November 7, 2014

Waterfront condo development launching new phase with Parkside

302 units in four buildings on Eau Claire site along Bow River.

CALGARY – A growing appetite for the condo lifestyle in Calgary has a major development launching its next phase of construction in the Eau Claire neighbourhood along the Bow River.

Anthem Properties Group will open sales to the public on November 15 for its Parkside project, encompassing four buildings and 302 units, in the Waterfront development, the Herald has learned.

“The biggest thing is obviously location. That’s a huge help. You look around us and we’re set right against a vibrant downtown, with plenty of successful people seeing the value of living and working close by. And you continue to see more amenities show up in the neighbourhood,” said Greg Zayadi, vice-president of sales and marketing for Anthem Properties Group based out of Vancouver, with properties and operations throughout Western Canada, and sister company to United Communities.

He said a growing number of restaurants, coffee shops and grocery stores coming to the downtown of Calgary will support that growing condo lifestyle in the heart of the city.

The Parkside phase will be directly adjacent to Sien Lok Park and consist of four buildings of 17, nine, nine and six storeys. Prices range from $289,900 to $2.3 million.

The company bought the current land just east of the Eau Claire Market in 2004 and started construction on the first building in 2007.

The first two buildings of Waterfront, 22 and 24 storeys, brought to the market 450 condo units. All are sold and occupied today with the exception of five penthouses still for sale.

“We fought through what was the tough market in the downturn and got it completed,” said Zayadi.

“Because of the amount of inventory we’ve already sold, the amount of owners we have in the buildings, we have huge demand from our existing owners.”

He said construction on Parkside will begin in the spring 2015 and all four buildings will be built at once with spring/summer 2018 completion.

Waterfront is also building its Outlook phase of 175 condo units in two buildings of 16 and four storeys. All units have been sold with completion expected in April 2015.

Zayadi said the final phase of the overall Waterfront project will probably launch next year. It will be located directly at the entrance to Prince’s Island Park, on the north side of the site, and consist of a nine and a four storey building with another 77 units.

A coffee shop and liquor store have opened on the site and a new Brazilian steakhouse is under construction.

When fully complete by 2018, Waterfront will have just over 1,000 condo units.

Zayadi said the market for condos is getting more robust in Calgary and that is evident in both the resale and new condo sectors this year.

According to the Calgary Real Estate Board, year-to-date until Wednesday, there have been 4,248 MLS condo apartment sales in the city, up 20.14 per cent from the same period a year ago. The median price has risen by 9.09 per cent to $285,000 while the average sale price is up by 8.37 per cent to $324,405.

In the Eau Claire neighbourhood, there have been 64 condo apartment sales this year until the end of October with the median price of $519,950 and the average sale price of $724,886. Last year, for the entire year, there were 81 condo apartment sales in the neighbourhood with a median price of $561,750 and an average sale price of $738,906.

“Parkside is the newest addition to the hugely successful Waterfront project which is located in one of the best locations in Calgary,” said Cody Battershill, a realtor with RE/MAX House of Real Estate in Calgary. “Sales in the previous towers have been strong, a testament to the desirability of the location and the overall strong demand for condominiums in Eau Claire and downtown Calgary.

“This new project has a variety of floor plans and price points for all buyers. This is another exciting new addition to the skyline and I’m very excited for my clients that are purchasing in the building. The Eau Claire area commands a lot of interest along with some of the highest priced condo sales in Calgary.”

A report by the Altus Group said standing inventories of condo apartment units have been low in Calgary for some time, in both the new and existing stock. This has resulted in buoyant pre-sales of new condo apartment starts here in the first nine months of this year which were almost 3.5 times that of last year and 2014 is on track to surpass the previous record set in 2008. While apartment sales are expected to moderate only slightly next year, starts are expected to post a more significant decline after the heady 2014 level.

Condo starts from January to September of 5,250 were up from 1,537 a year ago. Those under construction of 6,986 are up from 4,237 and sales of 2,225 have increased from 1,939.

By Mario Toneguzzi, Calgary Herald November 6, 2014

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