Though the earth was a bit frozen on Oct. 11, representatives from Melcor Development, the Town of Sylvan Lake and Habitat for Humanity dig in to break ground on the first ever Habitat for Humanity build in Sylvan Lake. Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News

Sylvan Lake’s first Habitat for Humanity project breaks ground

The ground breaking ceremony was held Thursday morning at the build site.

Dignitaries, community members, local businesses and members of Habitat for Humanity Red Deer gathered Thursday for the ground breaking of Sylvan Lake’s first project.

Habitat for Humanity Red Deer has chosen its next project, and it will be a triplex in the Vista at Rider Ridge. Not only will this project be the first Habitat for Humanity build in Sylvan Lake but it will also mark the organization’s 25th year.

“We are so excited to be here in Sylvan Lake and to bring this project to your community,” said Karen Vavrek, CEO of Habitat for Humanity Red Deer. “Our 25th anniversary is in 2019, so this build will also be our anniversary build.”

According to Vavrek, the charitable organization chose Sylvan Lake after looking around the area to see where it would be in the greatest need.

Habitat for Humanity Red Deer has worked with the Town as well as the affordable housing committee to find a suitable location to help the most families possible.

With the ground breaking on Oct. 11, it will take roughly 10 months to build the structure, and many volunteer days will be planned throughout the build.

“One day that was especially well received with our most recent build in Red Deer was a women’s build,” said Vavrek. “We will be looking to host one of those with this build as well as other themed building days such as youth build, Father’s Day build and Indigenous build.”

The location for the triplex is at the top of The Vista overlooking the Town. The lands acquired through a partnership with Melcor Development, with whom Habitat for Humanity Red Deer has worked with multiple times in the past.

Along with building homes for three families in need in Sylvan Lake, Vavrek said the organization will be utilizing as many local companies as possible.

“Along with helping families create a home, we also think it is just as important to help the community grow and that is something we will be doing by working with businesses, developers and trades all found in Sylvan Lake,” said Vavrek.

Mayor Sean McIntyre was on hand to say a few words and give thanks to Habitat for Humanity for choosing Sylvan Lake for this build.

He said he looks forward to the partnership the build will create as well as the lives it will change.

“This build will not only better the lives of the families who will soon live here, but also those of our community,” said McIntyre.

Habitat for Humanity Red Deer is currently going through the applications received for this project. Verve says the new home owners will be announced by the end of November.

Each family chosen must meet the minimum conditions which include a willingness to put in 500 hours of sweat equity into the build, the ability to repay the mortgage, demonstrate a stable working condition as well as having at least one child under rate age of 18 who will reside in the dwelling.

“It is a big commitment these families are giving, not only to the building of the house but also to their community,” said Vavrek.

The current plan is to have shovels in the ground and get the project rolling as soon as November of this year. If everything goes on schedule, the new home owners will receive their keys late summer or early fall next year.

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