It has been almost nine years since demolition started on the buildings that used to occupy 11703 Fraser Street.
The former site of the notoriously troubled Northumberland Court has been lying unused for almost a decade, but Aterra Development took the first step towards bringing some life to the lot when they broke ground on two new five story condominium buildings Friday, July 17.
Former Maple Ridge Mayor Ernie Daykin was pleased to see progress on a project he began shortly after being elected for the first time.
“It’s really gratifying and satisfying,” he said.
“One of the first meetings I had during my first term as mayor in January of 2009 was with the city’s lawyer to see how we could deal with this challenging property in the Port Haney area.
“It had this huge, negative impact on the community… and it took us two-and-a-half years to deal with it appropriately.”
Daykin said he appreciated the call from Aterra Development to come to the ground-breaking ceremony.
“The focus is on the future now and I’m looking forward to the ribbon cutting on the first unit,” he said.
Maple Ridge’s current mayor, Mike Morden, is equally happy to see work started on the empty lot.
“It was great to be part of the groundbreaking event for this new development,” he said.
“This project is one of a number of active applications in the historic Port Haney neighbourhood. With financial support from the province in the new Callaghan intersection, along with the upcoming opening of Beckett Park, this area will see a dramatic transformation in the coming years.
“Council acknowledges the challenges of the past few years and are excited that residents will now be able to enjoy, and be proud, of their neighbourhood.”
Trish Firth, a director with Aterra Development said they have seen a lot of enthusiasm from the community for the Sierra Ridge project.
“We’ve gotten some fantastic support from the neighbours and they’re very much looking forward to the project we’ve got going in there.”
Sierra Ridge will be made up of 82 condos spread over two buildings.
Building one will have 25 suites, while building two will contain 57.
“We range from one bedroom condos to three-bedroom-and-a-den homes,” Firth said.
Construction is expected to start shortly, and Firth said Aterra Development is hoping to move people in by 2022.