Look for more cranes in the sky and tool boxes at townhome sites this year compared to 2013, says a federal agency.
While construction of multi-family developments in the Calgary area in 2014 is expected to fall short of 2012’s totals, the new year should leave 2013 in its dust, says Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.
It expects there will be shovels in the ground on 6,600 multi-family units in the Calgary area in 2014 — up 20 per cent from the 5,500 construction starts expected for 2013. Last year’s results are still being tallied.
“Low rental vacancies, record migration inflows and rising prices in the (singlefamily home) market will increase the demand for multi-family units,” says market analyst Felicia Mutheardy of CMHC.
“As well, lower inventory levels for multi-family units, specifically for apartment units, will prompt more multi-family construction next year.”
The biggest decline in multifamily construction last year came in the condo apartment sector.
From Jan. 1, 2013, to the end of November, there were 2,612 construction starts for apartments, down almost 50 per cent from 3,899 starts during the same period a year earlier.
However, the stack of city building permit applications suggest apartments could pick up again in 2014, says Mutheardy.
“We saw significant increases (in permits), especially for apartments,” she says.
From the start of last January to the end of October, permits for apartments were up about 79 per cent.
“We definitely use permits as one of the leading indicators of new home construction, so looking at the data, it poses some indication of more multi-family starts forthcoming,” says Mutheardy.
One of the apartment projects that may contribute to that upswing in 2014 is the second half of the Guardian skyscraper. The 42-storey complex is under construction within Victoria Park in the inner-city Beltline area.
“The project was conceived to be a two-tower development from Day 1 and will be integrated into the same podium that is reaching completion on the site,” says Ernest Hon, marketing manager with developer Hon Towers.
“We’re still working on the details of the second phase, but we can (say) that it will be coming quite soon.
“I think it’s safe to say that many of the things that made our first phase so successful — lay-
Corner suite offers double the view outs, views and kitchens — will also play an important part in phase two.”
Hon expects sales to launch on the second tower in early 2014.
Another developer looking to repeat its success in downtown Calgary is Qualex-Landmark, the company behind the Mark on 10th, Calla, Luna, Nova and Stella projects.
It has its sights set on a new two-tower project. The first tower will front on 12th Avenue S.W., overlooking Central Memorial Park.
“The design of the two buildings will reinforce the landmark nature of the architecture in the immediate neighbourhood,” says Parham Mahboubi, vicepresident of marketing and new developments for Qualex-Landmark. A tentative public launch for the project is expected in late 2014.
Outside of downtown, townhomes had a busy year in 2013. There were 1,801 construction starts from the beginning of last year to the end of November, up 13 per cent from 1,589 during the same period in 2012.
A major multi-family developer that builds condo apartments and townhomes has a bright outlook for the coming year.
“2014 is shaping up to be another busy year for Avi Urban,” says sales and marketing manager Chris Pollen.
The company is slated to launch a number of projects in the coming year, including townhomes in both Currie Barracks and Sherwood, along with condo apartments in Auburn Bay.
Overall, Pollen says “2014 will pick up where 2013 left off.
“Multi-family will continue to evolve and innovate as existing developments sell out and new ones come online — and buyers will reap the rewards of this. It is a good time to be building multi-family homes in Calgary, but I think it is even a better time to be buying a new multi-family home in Calgary.”
Like Avi Urban, Cardel Lifestyles’ plans for 2014 will include both the northwest and southeast ends of the city.
The builder ended 2013 by launching Sage Place in Sage Hill and Cranston Ridge in Cranston. In 2014, Cardel Lifestyles will bring on Nolan Park in Nolan Hill and Auburn Walk in Auburn Bay.
The Cranston Ridge and Sage Hill developments are expected to have sales centres and show suites ready this year. Cardel Lifestyles will also wrap up two of its most successful projects, Cranston Place and Panorama West, this year.
Meanwhile, Streetside Development Corp. has a few projects slated to come on stream in 2014, says sales and marketing manager Ashley Carcasole.
A major development is Hunter House, which will open its sales centre in mid-January and is expected to have show homes ready in March.
Hunter House won a SAM Sales and Marketing Award at last year’s competition and helped Streetside earn MultiFamily Builder of the Year.
One of the busiest multi-family builders last year was Truman Homes, which launched four projects in 2013. These include Savoy in the inner city, SkyMills in SkyView Ranch, 51 Oak in Mahogany and Westbury Park in West Springs.
“Wait for 2014 — even more exciting new projects are coming down the pipe,” says Tony Trutina of Truman Homes.
Brookfield Residential was another busy builder last year, launching Muskoka in Auburn Bay, Mosaic Riverstone in Cranston and Mosaic Bridgeland.
Muskoka and Mosaic Riverstone will have show homes this year. Mosaic Riverstone’s should be ready in February.
“I think those are going to be spectacular,” says general manager Doug Owens, adding two other projects will break ground in Calgary later in 2014. Streetside Development Corp. was named Multi-Family Builder of the Year at last year’s Calgary Region SAM (Sales and Marketing) Awards. The builder is part of Qualico, which includes singlefamily home builders Sterling Homes, NuVista Homes and Broadview Homes. Streetside recently sold out its Evanston Square project in the community of Evanston, and its RedHaus project in Royal Oak. Its current projects include Kintalla in Redstone and Hunter House in Silverado in Calgary, and The Edge in Airdrie. For more information, visit streetside homes.com
Truman Homes launched four projects in 2013, including Savoy, an inner-city development. The company expects 2014 will be even stronger.
The Guardian condo complex by Hon Towers, left, as seen against the downtown Calgary skyline, was conceived as a two-tower structure.
The second phase of the Guardian is expected “quite soon.”
An artist’s rendering of the Mark on 10th project.
The Sage Place was launched in 2013 in Sage Hills.