Habitat for Humanity breaks ground on first-ever build in Sylvan Lake

By Sheldon Spackman
October 11, 2018 - 5:15pm

Habitat for Humanity Red Deer held a special ground breaking ceremony in Sylvan Lake on Thursday to celebrate the organization’s first-ever project in the community.

The new triplex along Ryder’s Ridge Blvd in the Melcor community of ‘The Vista at Ryder’s Ridge’ will be Habitat’s 25’th anniversary build and will house three local families to be announced in November.

Karen Vavrek, CEO, Habitat for Humanity Red Deer, says the build will be a community legacy project for Sylvan Lake and should be done by September of 2019.

“The other thing too is, having never done a Habitat home build in Sylvan Lake, we’re really looking forward to working with and serving families here who are in need of affordable homes,” states Vavrek. “No matter the community, whether it’s a smaller or larger community, urban or rural, affordable housing is an issue across the country and certainly here in central Alberta. So if we can make a difference for three families, then that’s just fulfilling our mission and what we’re here to do.”

Before construction gets fully underway later this year, Vavrek adds they will finish up their latest Red Deer build in the coming weeks.

“We’ve been very fortunate in that we’re finishing a project in Red Deer, two families will be moving into a duplex at the end of October,” she explains. “Then as we’re finishing that one, we’ll be starting this project here in Sylvan and serving three more families, so it’s the first year in our organization’s history where we’ve started or completed five units in one year.”

Vavrek describes the new triplex as walk-out townhomes with three bedrooms and two bathrooms but points out there are specific criteria that families have to meet.

“Families have to be able to demonstrate a stable employment history because they’ll be asked to repay a zero down payment, interest-free mortgage,” explains Vavrek. “They will also have to devote 500 hours of sweat equity on not only building their homes but in other volunteer efforts within the community of Sylvan Lake. Sylvan Lake is a great community for coming together for common causes and we expect really strong participation and involvement from volunteers, individuals and companies in Sylvan Lake.”

Meanwhile, Mayor Sean McIntyre says it’s an exciting day for the community.

“We’re really happy to see that this will kick-off an absolute change in the lives of three families that live here in Sylvan Lake, so it’s a wonderful day,” he exclaims. “It’s wonderful to be able to add to our inventory of affordable housing and ensure that three more families are able to not only have a roof over their heads but through their swear equity contributions, own that roof over their heads.”

McIntyre adds how grateful he is Habitat for Humanity chose Sylvan Lake for their 25th anniversary build in 2019.

“I hope that Sylvan Lakers will support Habitat for Humanity as well with the volunteer team builds that are coming up through the project,” states McIntyre. “Hopefully they’ll lend a hand to this project and make sure that it’s a success for our community and for the families that it will help.”

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