Innovation in New Edmonton Communities

Posted by Jerad Cox on Saturday, April 14th, 2018 at 6:50am.

Prime Edmonton Real Estate - As Edmonton has seen developers build in the outskirts of the city, one of the complaints has been the lack of community space and space to enjoy the outdoors. In the past, communities were built with both larger lots for people to enjoy backyard space as well as the odd playground and community league for recreation and community based activities.

Through the late 1990's and into the 2000's, as developers stock more houses on smaller lots, the need for that communal recreation space has increased.

Summerside, in South Edmonton, responded by creating something special.

If you go through the community of Summerside today, you will see numerous lakes, walking paths, tons of small playground areas for small children and many other amazing facilities. Of these, the one that takes the cake, would have to be the beach club! Equipped with a lake that has fishing, a beach, tennis court and many other facilities.  These areas have been primarily used for recreation and community building. There are a variety of different groups and interests all sharing the same space which also provides the perfect time to become acquainted with their neighbors.

So how did they do it?

By requiring all homeowners to pay what's called a homeowners association fee (HOA fee).

This homeowners association fee is a mandated amount of money per year that each person who owns property in the community pays to go towards the community facility. In that sense, it's almost like a condo fee for the recreation facilities. By doing this, they not only have a strong base to build the facilities but also a built in maintenance budget that is stable. A lot of people feel that it's just the equivalent of an extra tax, while others feel that it is actually a much more direct and representative form of taxation that allows them to enjoy the benefits more directly.

Other neighboring communities, such as the Orchards at Ellerslie, have also chosen to go this route in recent years. The results in the Orchards is that they already have a community league and splash park built with tons of great amenities.  They house lots of different workshops, exercise programs, health initiatives and community building activities that many other communities cannot host due to a lack of space.

What do you think of having a homeowners association fee? Now knowing the benefits that could result for you and your neighbors, is this "Community Hall" something that you would want to see in your community?  Let me know in the comments below

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