It’s a bit early but James Gordon has his Christmas present already picked out.
Gordon, his wife, and their two young Dachshunds will be relocating to McConachie Heights, a 77.5 acre community inside the larger more established McConachie quadrant in the city’s northeast sector. Having made their new home purchase early in July, sort of Christmas in July if you might, they’ll likely take possession just after the holidays.
“What a great gift,” said Gordon, of the timing of when they’ll move into the two-storey, front-attached garage home they’re building. “We’re moving out, moving up and we’ve bought a house.”
The Gordons had been actively house hunting. Currently renting and living in Allard in the southwest, Gordon faces a one-and-a-half hour commute to work. Once they’re in McConachie Heights, this will drop dramatically to just 22 minutes.
“I was honestly looking everywhere, more so north of the Yellowhead just because I work north of the city,” said Gordon. “But I didn’t rule anything out. I also looked in the west end. I looked at some properties in the south.”
It was McConachie Heights though and builder Park Royal Homes that made him seal the deal.
“It’s a new neighbourhood but with established roots,” said Gordon about McConachie Heights from developer Anthem United. There’s convenient access to Anthony Henday Drive, the Clareview LRT station, shopping (both newer developments and short distances to Londonderry Mall and Manning Town Centre), while the McConachie Tree Stand, in the centre of the neighbourhood, provides a sustainable natural area.
Being a new family just starting out, price was an important consideration for Gordon.
“With the current market, the current interest rates, it’s really the time to buy,” he said, noting they were looking at a laned home with a detached garage as that’s what they thought they could afford. That changed when they talked to Park Royal. It also wasn’t the only reason they selected them.
“Their slogan says it all, it says ‘live like royalty’,’’ said Gordon. “You definitely do. The finishings, the build itself … it’s like the sprinkles on the donut. You get that little extra. When you walk into the home it’s the razzle dazzle, it really takes your breath away and it feels like a home the second you walk through the door.”
The Gordons are going for a traditional style for their home with a modern flair for the three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom house that will come in at about 1,700 square feet. There will be a chef’s kitchen, and a bonus room, but they’re a bit short on some of the details as they haven’t yet picked colours, finishes, cabinetry and flooring.
Park Royal, said Gordon, swept them off their feet and gave them more bang for their buck than they expected. Also factoring into the purchase were the awards Park Royal won including sharing in Canada’s first ever Triple Crown in the home building industry — it’s a part of the Milestone Group of Companies, which recently won the top builder award at the local, provincial and national levels for the same year.
“McConachie Heights is a vibrant young community,” said Colin Wilson, Milestone’s general manager. “There’s lots of construction going on and it’s a sought-after location. Our recent award wins (including the Triple Crown) are bringing in more traffic and people are excited to build with us.”
Park Royal has been in McConachie Heights since the community launched.
“One of the things we’re looking for in a new community is livability — that people have access to the things they need,” added Wilson. “It’s a very well-planned community in a great location.”
Park Royal is building both front-garage and laned homes in McConachie Heights. Front-garage homes start at 1,410 square feet and pricing, including tax, begins at $395,000. For laned homes, they start at 1,096 square feet and pricing begins at under $320,000, tax included.
The neighbourhood is named after Grant McConachie, a pioneering Canadian bush pilot and aviation entrepreneur who lived in Calder (now a part of west-central Edmonton). Anthem’s website notes that McConachie’s aviation work allowed Edmonton to become a hub for flights throughout western North America and, eventually, to Europe, Asia and South America.
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