Toronto—In 2014, the stacked townhome is making its big debut. As housing forms go, they are a great way to get the comfort and community feeling families like. In addition, efficient use of land makes these homes affordable and also creates density, which urban planners know makes for greater access to local services and transit.
Lindvest is building modern stacked townhome projects in several communities around the GTA. Previously known as H&R, over the past 60 years the company has built thousands of homes in Ontario. Today, they build everything from two-storey lane homes at B. Streets in the Annex—a 2012 BILD Project of the Year Award winner—to single family detached homes in Newcastle’s Gracefields community.
Lindvest’s long-term projects in Westown and Cornell feature a variety of housing types including detached and semi-detached, but this year, stacked townhomes are what future residents of Westown and Cornell are buying.
Lindvest began building Westown at Sheppard Ave. and Weston Rd. in 2007. The community is nestled between two golf courses and surrounded by the many pristine trails along the Humber River Valley.
A five-minute drive from Hwy 401, Hwy 400, and Hwy 409, and 15 minutes by bus to Downsview Station(and by 2015 the Union Pearson Express), the location will continue to improve as our transit system matures.
With the detached and semi-detached homes (some of which are still available) mostly built, the final phase is called The Brownstones at Westown. Modeled after Manhattan’s famous brownstones, these 2-bedroom suites are all well over 900 sq. ft., starting at $329,000.
“The space for the price is incredible,” said Joseph Alberga, director of sales and marketing for Lindvest.
The Cornell community in Markham is one of Canada’s most talked about and studied New Urbanist communities. Master planned by famous American architect and planner Andres Duany, the community stretches between Hwy 407 to 16th Ave, 9th Line and Hwy 407.
“It’s meant to be a self-contained community,” said Alberga.
Construction in Cornell began in 1997, but upon completion it is expected to be home to a possible 40,000 people— its own vibrant little town.
Features of New Urbanism include great pedestrian connectivity throughout the community. More house sizes and style choices allow for greater density. This supports access to a wider variety of commercial, retail, and institutional destinations, all within walking or biking distance.
Cornell was one of four New Urbanist communities studied by the CMHC in 2010. Their research showed that when compared with traditional suburbs, people living in communities like Cornell are far more likely to be satisfied with their neighbourhood (70 percent versus 47 percent) because they found it more convenient to walk or bike to parks, stores, and other facilities.
Respondents in the study reported being more attached to their neighbourhoods, and greet and socialize with neighbours more often.
Lindvest will be building commercial and employment-ready property that will be tenanted around the time new buyers take possession.
“Everything is close by, including your services,” said Alberga.
He expects to make announcements for confirmed retail tenants this year. Aside from close proximity to the Markham-Stoufville Hospital, residents can anticipate a community facility with dental and medical services.
At the heart of Cornell is a 40-acre wood lot that will remain a public green space. “It will become the heart of the community,” Alberga said.
As Cornell matures, it will only get better. The transit corridor along Hwy 7 will come to fruition, and land is reserved for a school inside Cornell when the community becomes mature.
“We’re in a 15 to 20-year plan for the entire vision to be complete,” said Alberga, who feels Lindvest is only in years 4 to 6 at present.
If you are set on a single-family detached home, Aurora Glenn in Aurora will soon be on sale from the low $700s. Townhouses are in the plans, but not until phase 3 of the project which sits along Leslie in the neighbourhood between Wellington St. E. and St. John’s Side Rd. Surrounded by the Aurora highlands with its protected green spaces and nature trails, the 34 ft, 38 ft, and 44 ft homes are minutes away from Hwy 404.
For more information: www.linvest.com