SoBow grows with the flow
Inglewood complex, named for area south of Bow River, enters next phase
The developer of an Inglewood condo complex is celebrating the topping off of a tower in the project, allowing construction to finish on the next tower by the end of January.
“We have proven building elements,” says Iain McCorkindale, president of M2I Development Corp., about the 1912Cross tower in the SoBow project.
“We have masonry, glass and metal cladding — all durable and weather resistant. Our envelope system, coupled with our HVAC system, is getting us a 30.2 per cent reduction in our energy model, which is why we’ve achieved BuiltGreen HD (high-0density building) and we’re on track for a silver rating.”
The 1912Cross building’s west tower now has its top slab poured, allowing construction to start on the east tower.
Named for its location south of the Bow River, SoBow will eventually contain up to 700 homes in a variety of buildings ranging from four to 12 storeys.
The Grande House, built by the development’s previous owners, is in place and features a large gym. A bistro will reopen in the spring.
Next door, 1912Cross is underway. The six-storey concrete building with 120 units has two wings flanking a courtyard. The west tower is about half sold, while the east tower will likely go up for sale in the spring.
Buyer Gordon Sinn enjoys the vibrancy of living downtown, but he knew he wanted his permanent home in a slightly quieter neighbourhood.
Sinn, 24, came to Calgary two years ago to work with a tax consultant company for the oil and gas industry. When it came time for the Toronto native to buy his first home, he explored downtown and other inner-city communities.
As his realtor was driving him back from a foray into another neighbourhood, they drove past SoBow and Sinn decided to check it out. “I really liked their floor plan, especially the onebedroom that I got,” he says.
“Normal one-bedrooms in the area did not have a dining room section divided up. That drew me in. I thought of how I can easily entertain friends and I can see myself living in it.”
Inglewood is an historic inner-city community just east of Fort Calgary near the Elbow and Bow rivers that has plenty to offer him — a quiet area next to nature and the rivers, along with quick access to the neighbourhood’s vibrant 9th Street retail, restaurant and nightclub strip.
“The reason I picked Inglewood was because I am in my mid-20s,” says Sinn.
“I think in the next year or two that the Beltline will be too busy and too loud for me. I want some quiet. Here, the park in the back is great and the little boutique shops are great.”
Sinn bought a one-bedroom unit that is slightly more than 700 square feet.
“For the price point, I don’t think you can find anything close to it,” he says. “It’s a relatively new build and the space is really well thought-out. The layout is awesome.”
SoBow’s prices are competitive, says McCorkindale.
“Our pricing is about 20 to 25 per cent under market right now,” he says.
“The market is about $550 to $600 a square foot and we’re $415 a square foot on average, so we’re priced to be very attractive in this phase.”
Sales director David Frid says there is a wide variety of homes — from studios and one-bedroom units to two-bedroomsplus-dens and townhomes.
The largest are three-bedroom units of 1,632 square feet. One-bedroom units start from $300,000, and two-bedroom units are from $370,000, not including tax.
The wide variety aims to attract a large spectrum of residents. “Our purchasers get Inglewood — that’s probably our primary selling feature,” says Frid. “The park and being on the river are also huge. It’s those three components and being in the inner city without being smack in the middle of rush hour and noise.”
One in four visitors to the sales centre have bought at the project since June, says Frid. “It proves that as soon as you come through, you get it.”
In 2011, a new partnership took SoBow out of receivership and spent a year redesigning and relaunching the development. Since May of this year, construction has picked up again.
The fact that the project is back on track is reassuring to Sinn. “They had the money to start on the construction before they sold out all the suites, so that made me feel a lot more confident that they had the money to start the construction before they sold out all the suites,” he says.
As Sinn spends more time in Calgary, the more he finds he’s getting into the outdoor groove the city is known for, including its proximity to the Rocky Mountains.
“I grew up in Toronto and it’s definitely a different lifestyle,” he says. “I feel like you get to do more outdoor activities here and you’re more out in nature here. I’m seeing a lot of opportunities in Calgary and I’m definitely going to stay here for the foreseeable future. That’s why I decided I really wanted to purchase a place.”
SoBow buyer Gordon Sinn, 24, a Toronto native who came to Calgary two years ago, knew he wanted his first home to be in a slightly quieter neighbourhood.
An artist’s rendering of the living area in a 1912Cross apartment condo unit in SoBow.
Buyer Gordon Sinn likes Inglewood’s proximity to the Bow River.