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A Grand Opening for New Beginnings

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Ribbon Cutting at Grand Opening of North Glenora Townhomes with Right at Home Housing Society
An official ribbon cutting ceremony for the North Glenora Townhomes grand opening, celebrating with many politicians and supporters of the project.

Right At Home had a lot to celebrate on February 2nd when we gathered with friends and supporters to mark the grand opening of our North Glenora project. It was a wonderful moment to acknowledge the many people who helped take this development from dream to reality.

A Grand Opening, a Grand Celebration

In addition to a ribbon cutting  ceremony, we were also thrilled for Minister Lori Sigurdson to announce the Provincial Government’s commitment of $6 million dollars for new Right At Home developments. She thanked Right At Home for our enduring commitment to housing, and offered tribute to the people in North Glenora “who said yes to opening your neighborhood to new families and new possibilities.”

We were also joined by Mayor Don Iveson, who extended his congratulations to all the project partners for their exceptional collaboration.  “They say it takes a village,” he noted in his address. “But here’s the cool thing: the village here built another village.”

Some of the most poignant words came from Community League President, Ryan Young. Asked to give a formal welcome to the families, he shared that his new neighbours had already become a part of the community since moving in during December. He knew many of them by name, recognizing them as the parents of children who played soccer with his own kids, even in the snow, and those who came by the community skating rink. We were also honoured to have two families living in the townhomes share their stories with us, Hassan Assef and Hsar Kee Lar. Their strength and commitment to community was truly inspiring.

Right At Home is so grateful to everyone in attendance and all of our champions along the way. Read on to learn more about how we arrived at this momentous day.  

Team effort

Sixteen families moved into the townhomes in December 2017 and since then the project has been highlighted in several news stories . Like many successful projects, North Glenora was a result of exceptional collaboration between many people. The townhomes are part of a partnership with the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers, Habitat Studio, and the Westmount Presbyterian Church. We also had exceptional contributions from the philanthropic community, including generous donations from the Stollery Charitable Foundation, Edmonton Community Foundation, and the Southminster Steinhauer United Church.

We’re also grateful for the professional support and great advice of The Communitas Group,  John Toogood, and Heather Mackenzie Consulting.

North Glenora Grand Opening: President Anne Stevenson and room of supporters
Right at Home Housing Society President Anne Stevenson addresses a room full of supporters for the North Glenora project at its grand opening ceremony.

A YIMBY Neighbourhood

The project was very lucky to have great neighbours. North Glenora has been very receptive to our newest project in their neighbourhood. They have welcomed our tenants with open arms and hearts, encouraging other communities to join the ‘Yes, In My Back Yard’ (YIMBY) movement. Andrew Gregory, a community resident, wrote a thoughtful blog post about the groundbreaking for the project, stating the importance of YIMBYism. We are so elated to have wonderful neighbours in North Glenora to ensure our tenants feel at home.

 

We are pleased our project can help give back to this neighbourhood.In partnership with the Westmount Presbyterian Church, the project includes a worship and community space that can be used by community members. In addition, an on-site daycare will benefit families in the townhomes and residents in North Glenora. An incredible outcome of the townhome project was the sixteen new families with young children who moved into the building also enrolled approximately thirty five new students in Coronation School, which was previously slated for closure. This has helped the school flourish in an aging community.

Environmental Solutions

Peter Amerongen of Habitat Studio is known for his focus on renewable energy and sustainable construction. We were excited to work with Peter to build a multi-family complex producing net-zero energy. The design is the first of its kind on such a large scale in Canada, and has since become a pioneer for future affordable housing considerations. The net-zero aspect of the building allows operations of the townhomes to remain affordable for decades to come. Peter has spoken publicly about the way solar energy was incorporated to achieve an innovative solution. Peter has also credited the success of this project to the many people who were involved in the design and construction of the buildings. He highlighted how everyone’s commitment and passion led to exceptional problem solving that ultimately allowed this project to come in under budget.

North Glenora Townhomes and Community Centre
The North Glenora Townhomes and Community Centre have welcomed 16 new families since December 2017.

We hope our residents  are happy in  their new homes for  years to come, and that Right at Home Housing Society will continue to develop examples of affordable housing options that have a positive impact on the community and environment.

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