East Village revitalization ramps up with new condo construction

Construction on an 18-storey condominium in the East Village officially broke ground on Thursday.

Construction in downtown area expected to heat up this spring

(Bryan Labby/CBC)

Construction on an 18-storey condominium tower in the East Village officially broke ground Thursday.

Officials are promising Calgarians will see a lot more construction this spring in the area where revitalization has been talked about for years.

"You'll see more holes in the ground than you've ever seen before, you'll see more trucks working, you'll see more cranes in the air, you'll see a community that's starting to come to life," said Michael Brown, president of the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation, which oversees development of the East Village.

Vince Truong, who has purchased one of the units, said he is excited about the changes he's seeing in the area.

"Just the development and how much they cleaned it up, I definitely saw the potential. In comparing a lot of other condos in the city along the Beltline, I thought this one had the most potential for growth," said Truong.

The condo developer, Slokker Canada Corp., has sold more than 70 per cent of the 200 units in the new building. 

Company spokesperson Bruce Kerr admits it has been a difficult sell to some buyers, as the

"There's a little bit of, 'Well, I can go over to the Beltline, I see restaurants, I feel in touch, I know it's coming, I'm buying a little bit on a promise.'"

Other developments

This is the second condominium development in the East Village.

The first one, owned by a Vancouver-based company, is well under construction.

There will be a groundbreaking later this month on the National Music Centre, which will also be located in the East Village.

Construction is already underway on a new pedestrian bridge to St. Patrick's Island and work on a Hilton hotel is expected to start later this year.