Highrise construction on abandoned downtown site to begin in January

A 24-storey apartment building will soon begin to rise out of the gaping hole in the ground at the corner of 95th Street and Jasper Avenue in downtown Edmonton.

Calgary-based Cidex Group to begin work on 24-storey Edmonton apartment building after the holidays

It will take about 18 months to complete the building, with a target of mid-2019 for the opening. (Min Dhariwal/CBC)

A 24-storey apartment building will begin to rise out of the gaping hole in the ground at the corner of 95th Street and Jasper Avenue in downtown Edmonton in January.

"I think that hole has sat open with a lot of questions and we're excited to bring it out of the ground," said Sarah Itani, business development manager with Cidex.

This is the first project in Edmonton for the Calgary-based company, which developed Giroux Estates in St. Albert and several developments in Calgary and its surrounding communities.

Cidex develops residential and mixed-use buildings, including highrise apartments.

Set to open in 2019

The building planned for Edmonton will contain 199 rental units, including studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, Itani said Wednesday.

There will be the potential for retail on the ground level, with parking underground, she added.

Construction will begin in January, with "activity on site" becoming obvious the first week after the holidays, she said.

It will take about 18 months to complete the building, with a target of mid-2019 for the opening.

Rental rates will be set a few months before the building opens, said Itani. "We want it to be competitive with what's going on."
The lot at 95th Street and Jasper Avenue was abandoned by a previous developer. (CBC)

The property is part of the City of Edmonton's plan for The Quarters, the long-neglected neighbourhood in east downtown dotted with abandoned buildings and gravel parking lots.

Two marquee residential towers were planned for the site, but the developer pulled out after failing to meet conditions before a 2015 deadline.

The site was being prepared for a 28-storey glass highrise that was to be the first of The Corners Towers, when work stopped. The site has been sitting abandoned ever since.

"We are part of the East Village movement here in Calgary," said Itani. "We've seen what positive development can do."
The same potential exists in The Quarters, she said.

"There's really great access to transport, beautiful views overlooking the river," said Itani. "We see this area as being an accessible hub with a lot of great amenities in the area."

The building will be named the Hat at Five Corners. "We're really excited about this project," she said.
This sketch is all that is currently available depicting the building Cidex Group plans to put up on Jasper Avenue and 95th Street. (Cidex Group)