by Andru McCracken

Valemount’s newest subdivision officially opened on Wednesday, October 4.

Mayor Jeannette Townsend, Chief Administrative Officer Adam Davey brought sparkling wine to the event and the Fowler family, Shawn, Diane, their son Tyler and daughter in law Felecia were in attendance to unveil the street sign.

If you are thinking of purchasing one of the lots in the scenic cul de sac, you are out of luck: all 21 lots have been sold. However, the Fowlers have a second 36-lot subdivision paralleling 17th Avenue under development and a third subdivision will contain 44 lots. The marketing was done by word of mouth and a sign at the end of the road.

Diane said the new subdivision is connected to downtown Valemount with trails already popular with local joggers.

Shawn guesses that two or three of the lots have sold to housing developers. “Competition is good, I guess,” he said, eliciting a laugh from those gathered.

“We even have a foundation in already. We’re starting one this year and we’ll have two more next year,” said Shawn.

There are restrictions on the kind of buildings that can be built which are laid out in a building scheme. They must be timber frame and meet a mountain theme, said Tyler.

“We just don’t want trailers or vinyl siding,” said Shawn.

Shawn said that they built the subdivision with partners, three brothers based in Saskatchewan, Allan, Perry and Mark Rumpf.

The partners Allan Rumpf said he and his brothers started coming to Valemount about 10 years ago for snowmobiling.

“We liked the community and liked the sledding,” said Allan. “We met Shawn and Diane and it just sort grew. We became friends and he was looking for a partner. We were looking for something else to do.”

The Rumpf brothers are grain farmers from Battleford, Saskatchewan. They farm 14,500 acres.

“We’re quite excited about the ski hill coming,” said Allan. “We’re all skiers. We plan on spending a lot of time in Valemount.”

Allan said the subdivision has been popular with out-of-town buyers.

“It’s all out-of-town people; it’s an out-of-province kind of thing,” said Allan.

Allan, Perry and Mark are building a house together, and this winter Allan said he will bring his two eldest kids along to snowmobile.

Townsend, herself a native of Saskatchewan, appreciated the connection.

“If they’re from Saskatchewan, they have a strong work ethic. Let’s put it that way,” she said.

Higher cost development

Shawn said the project was over budget.

“It’s a little bit more to develop here than the big cities,” he said.

“It is what it is; it will create a lot of taxpayer money I’m hoping.”

Townsend said that Valemount is a great option for people.

“Look what’s going on in the big cities right now,” said Townsend. “It’s not safe to be there anymore.”

On average the lots sold for $150,000.

Tyler said that, on average, lots are 100 feet by 215 feet. A typical town lot is 65 feet by 115 feet.

Shawn said they will service the lots along 17th Avenue in the spring.

He managed to plan the subdivision without lift stations, using gravity to get waste to the sewer treatment plant.

The Fowler family is already looking toward a new project on 20 acres they own.

“We might do a resort just outside of town here,” he said.