Downtown condo building subject to financial challenges

A Red Deer downtown condominium building focused on green power is taking longer than anticipated to get built due to problems getting financing during slower economic times, says one of the project partners.

A Red Deer downtown condominium building focused on green power is taking longer than anticipated to get built due to problems getting financing during slower economic times, says one of the project partners.

The six-storey building to be known as Swerve Living is still on tap for 5201 50th Ave. after it first acquired municipal planning commission approval in November 2006.

Paul Harris said no construction date has been set for the estimated $9.5-million project, but added the project is steadily moving forward.

“It’s just all about the economy right now,” said Harris. “We’re trying to put the financing in place, making sure the costs are under control. . . there is nobody lending right now.”

The financing companies don’t want to take any risk, he added.

He expects once financing is in place, the project will get off the ground quickly. Everything else is in place, including building permits and contractors.

“I’m like a dog with a bone — I’m going to make this work,” Harris added.

Harris and his three project partners — Terry Warke, Adéle Poratto Mullen and Darrel Mullen — have designed a building that features no natural gas connections. It will rely entirely on purchased energy produced through wind and solar generation.

Solar panels and possibly a windmill will be installed on site.

The development would contain five ground-floor commercial bays offering food-related retail, such as wine and cheese or a coffee shop.

ltester@bprda.wpengine.com

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