cgy-manchester-station

Work has stopped on the Manchester Station condo project in southeast Calgary. ((CBC))

The City of Calgary is cracking down on neglected construction projects, issuing orders to the owners of six stalled condominium projects to conduct remedial work to keep the sites safe and secure.

Kevin Griffiths, the city's chief building inspector, announced the orders on Friday.

"The city does not take the issue of abandoned construction sites lightly and will exercise its full authority to ensure public safety, protect public infrastructure and minimize the impact on the community," said Griffiths in a statement.

City workers were already dumping dirt Friday into a large, mucky hole dug for a 12-storey condo project called Manchester Station at 5320-2nd Street S.W.

Work stopped on the development in September. The city ordered the owner to put better fencing around the site and have a professional engineer make sure it was safe. Because the owner failed to comply, the city will do the work and send the owner the bill.

Todd Gow, the spokesman for the developer Condo Source, said the company intends to re-start construction next spring, Condo Source couldn't abide by the city's orders because it couldn't find a contractor, he said.

"It is actually much cheaper to have the city do the work," Gow said.

Sean Byron, who lives next door to the site, said he's glad the city is taking action.

"Kids do like to climb. It's not that big of a fence to climb and it's quite the deep hole."

Also facing orders from the city:

  • Gateway Midtown (517-10th Avenue S.W.)
  • Sky Tower (201-10th Avenue S.W.)
  • Grand Haras (1215-5th Street S.W.)
  • Grand Park (101-29th Avenue N.E.)
  • Grand Riviera (1505-23rd Avenue S.W.)

Market analyst Lai Sing Louie said in September that developers were caught with too many projects and not enough buyers.

"The market right now is very competitive," he said. "If you look around, there's lots of supply out there, not as many buying as in the past."

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation says it could be 2010 before the excess condo supply is sold off in Calgary.