Condominium community for River Heights
Centennial Park will be home to tidy, mid-sized bungalows
FOR the longest time, Myles Kraut and Marc Kipnes had visualized an idea: an infill condominium community comprised of tidy, midsized bungalows.
Problem was, they couldn’t find the right piece of land for the project. Then, they saw it — a strip of land in River Heights (between Corydon Avenue and Academy Road) that matched their vision. In that instance, Centennial Park was born.
“This project didn’t come together overnight,” said Kipnes, who along with Kraut conceived the successful Mosaic Condominiums project in the Fort Richmond area. “We looked long and hard for a place to build. Then, when this property came up for sale, we acted very quickly. We saw it as an affordable place to put in some pretty cool condominiums.”
The idea, said Kipnes, was to keep the tradition of River Heights, yet bring in new construction to meet increasing housing needs.
“With this project coming on stream, people who live in the area won’t have to leave the area (when they sell their house). This type of housing will enable them to stay in an area they love, but in a condominium that requires little or no maintenance. We’ve worked very closely with the city to come up with a community that both they and the local residents approved of.”
Newman, Greenberg and Associates co-owner Barry Greenberg said the locals made it clear what they wanted — and didn’t want.
“They immediately made it clear they didn’t want a highrise project,” said Greenberg. “The project, in their mind, had to fit the area.”
Kraut said he and Kipnes met with residents repeatedly to refine project blueprints.
“We actually met four times with folks from the neighbouring community to get feedback on what they wanted,” said Kraut. “We also relied on the input of (the city’s) Michael Robinson. Without him, we wouldn’t have come up with such a quality plan.”
The result of all the planning is a bungalow condominium community — built by Pre-Con Builders and designed by architect Ernie Walter — that will be situated between Corydon Avenue (with units set back well from the street) and Academy Road, running between Centennial Street and Lockwood Street.
“There will be 62 units in total, with the first 28 (phase one) going up in spring 2011,” said Kipnes. “They will be two-and three-bedroom attached bungalows ranging in size from 1,080 sq. ft. to 1,254 sq. ft., with full basements, attached garages and private yards with decks. Most importantly, each home will have a different look. They won’t be row houses.”
Once complete, he added, the community will have a paved walking/bike path running through it from start to finish and will seamlessly merge Corydon and Academy together. To add to the community’s inherent beauty, over 600 trees and shurbs will be planted along the path, which will be planted prior to actual construction to provide a preview of how the community will wind through the area.
Kraut said prospective owners will not only enjoy the area’s visual appeal, but the quality with which the attached units will be constructed.
“First of all, ICF (insulated concrete forms) will comprise the separation walls between each unit to provide a high level of sound proofing and fire retardency,” he said, adding main floor ceilings will be nine feet. “Each unit will feature an open-concept design with triple-pane windows, stainless steel energy smart appliances, granite kitchens and laminate floors. And those interior features are standard.”
The quality doesn’t end there, added Kipnes.
“Of course, each and every unit will be built on piles, and will come with an exterior that features acrylic stucco and masonry and hardiboard siding. Each condominium will come with central air conditioning and forced-air heating, as well as a finished basement option. All basements will come insulated and polyed.”
Greenberg said Centennial Park will be a welcome addition to the area for several reasons.
“It’s one of the best locations in the city, and will provide the best of both worlds — old character, but new construction,” he said. “It will also be a welcome relief to the area — new construction, with no bidding wars. Ultimately, it will offer ease of living at an affordable price in a wonderful area, and won’t be limited to one age group. The units will also be priced low enough so anyone can afford to get into River Heights.”
The Centennial Park condos are an innovative solution to a difficult lot.