Interior work starts at Elements

The focus at Elements @ Rivers Edge is shifting from exterior work to interior finishing.

North hill apartment buildings across the Red Deer River valley provide a backdrop for a River City Developments worker attaching granite blocks to a fifth-floor residential balcony in the Element’s @ River’s Edge building Tuesday. Work on the $32-million project

North hill apartment buildings across the Red Deer River valley provide a backdrop for a River City Developments worker attaching granite blocks to a fifth-floor residential balcony in the Element’s @ River’s Edge building Tuesday. Work on the $32-million project

The focus at Elements @ Rivers Edge is shifting from exterior work to interior finishing.

Purchasers of space in the commercial-residential complex on the west side of Gaetz Avenue near 55th Street have begun work on improvements to their premises, said Ken Wessel, a partner in River City Developments Ltd.

“A number of the clients already have their building permits in place for doing the interior work.”

He expects the three buildings, which are connected, to be ready for base occupancy by the end of April. That’s when components like fire alarms and sprinklers, and mechanical systems, should be operational and certified for use.

Elements @ Rivers Edge includes a five-storey building on the southern bank of the Red Deer River, with the top three floors containing 12 residential condominiums. These range in size from about 2,275 to 3,125 square feet, with seven purchased to date — including one by Wessel.

He’s started the finishing work on his unit, and expects to use it as a show suite. Members of the public will be able to view the other units as well.

“In the middle of March we’re going to start doing open houses on Saturdays and Sundays,” said Wessel.

Although the elevators will not yet be functioning, he thinks visitors will find the lofty view well worth the effort to get there.

“I think that’s what sells them, is once people get up there and have a look at things.”

The 26,000 square feet of space in the bottom two floors of the five-storey building will be leased to commercial users.

The other two buildings along Gaetz Avenue consist of about 40,000 square feet spread over two floors. They’re being marketed as condominiumized commercial space, with only about 13,000 square feet still to be sold.

Buyers to date are Summit Strategies, All Service Insurance Brokers Ltd., Riverside Dental Centre, South Hill Denture Clinic and Grande Prairie ophthalmologist Dr. Mila Bozdech. Two other deals are pending, said Wessel.

“They’re going through their financing and some of their due diligence,” he said, describing the proposed uses of these prospective buyers as being office- and medical-focused.

Now that Elements @ Rivers Edge is transforming from a construction site to an eye-catching development, Wessel is getting lots of feedback.

“In all honesty, we’ve never had a negative comment.”

He estimated the cost of the three buildings, including occupant improvements, at between $32 million and $34 million. That doesn’t include a proposed three-storey, circular building that would house a restaurant on its bottom two floors and a lounge on its third.

“We won’t start it this year,” said Wessel, “but it’s definitely on the radar to go next year.”

Additional information about Elements @ Rivers Edge can be found online at www.elementsatriversedge.com.

hrichards@bprda.wpengine.com