Condominium subdivision project on vacant land for first-time buyers and retirees

If Chatham-Kent Council approves an Official Plan Amendment at Monday’s meeting, it will help pave the way for a local homebuilder to build homes and townhouses suitable for the first-time homeownership markets and retirements.

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If Chatham-Kent Council approves an Official Plan Amendment at Monday’s meeting, it will help pave the way for a local homebuilder to build homes and townhouses suitable for the first-time homeownership markets and retirements.

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Staff recommends that Council approve Maple City Homes Ltd.’s application. to redesignate a 7.13-hectare (17.6-acre) parcel of land on the north side of Park Avenue West for residential use rather than roadside commercial use.

Noting that there are still many steps to take before the project is built, Maple City Homes President Robb Nelson said the plan is to build a condominium development with homes ranging in size from approximately 83 square meters (900 square feet) to 102 square meters (1,100 square feet). square feet) which will include one to three bedroom units.

But instead of living in a traditional condominium-style building, he said the self-contained homes would include outdoor living space. He added that the plan is also to build a community center, swimming pool and walking paths in the housing estate.

He compares the size of the planned houses to the “wartime” houses built in Chatham which were about 92 square meters (1,000 square feet) with two or three bedrooms, a bathroom, a kitchen and a living room.

“We do, but we add garages or carports.”

He said some models will be bungalows while others will be two-story, with the living space on the second floor and the garage, laundry room and storage space on the ground floor.

The plan also includes the construction of 48 traditional-style townhouses.

“It’s just a little bit different from what Chatham was used to, (but) it will fill a lot of needs,” Nelson said.

He noted that smaller homes attract both first-time buyers and those looking to downsize.

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“The market he fills is that he sells time,” he said.

Nelson said his company has heard from many people who don’t want to deal with a big yard, but want outdoor living space to spend time with their family.

A staff report noted that this type of project supports a goal of Chatham-Kent’s official plan to “plan for a diverse range of housing choices to ensure the housing stock can accommodate an aging population, a variety of household types and sizes, a greater diversity of culture and the range of physical and mental disabilities, and that the housing stock can accommodate fluctuations in these needs.

Nelson said there are a lot of hurdles to overcome when planning a subdivision. But, he added, if everything falls into place, Maple City Homes would like to have subdivision services in place by mid-2022, with construction of new units beginning next fall.

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