Business briefs – September 8

Red Deer’s municipal planning commission has voted to support an application by Scott Builders Inc. to erect a 20.7-metre (68-foot) telecommunication tower near the city’s northern boundary.

MPC approves north end telecommunication tower

Red Deer’s municipal planning commission has voted to support an application by Scott Builders Inc. to erect a 20.7-metre (68-foot) telecommunication tower near the city’s northern boundary.

Scott indicated to the city that it needs the tower at its 8105 49th Ave. Cl. premises to communicate with its other office. It said there are no other communication towers in the area that it can use, but that it would allow other companies to co-locate on its tower.

The application must still be OK’d by Industry Canada, but the commission did register its support and approve the tower as discretionary use for the industrial-zoned property. No public consultation is required, since the proposed tower is more than 200 metres from the nearest residential development.


Real estate activity still exceeding last year’s pace

Activity in the local residential real estate market continues to exceed last year’s pace.

The Central Alberta Realtors Association reports that 357 homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service in August: 137 in the city of Red Deer and 220 in the outlying area covered by the association. That’s an 18 per cent increase over the same month in 2010, when there were 94 city sales and 208 rural transactions, for a total of 302.

In July, there were a combined 359 residential sales.

From January to August, the Central Alberta market produced 2,656 home sales — consisting of 1,106 in Red Deer and 1,550 in the surrounding region. That represents a 21 per cent increase over the same eight months in 2010, when there were 2,194 sales, made up of 980 in the city and 1,214 outside.

The average price of the homes sold in Red Deer last month was $267,120, as compared with $291,229 in July and $316,845 in August 2010. In the rural area, the average last month was $242,945, down slightly from $244,101 in July but up from $171,421 a year ago.

These averages include homes of all types and sizes, the mix of which can vary significantly from month to month.


Ponoka grocer to be honoured

A Ponoka grocer will be honoured at an industry conference next month in Toronto.

Peggy Hamilton, who operates Hamilton’s IGA in Ponoka, is one of three people selected to be named life members of the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers this year. The others are Peter Knipfel, an independent retailer in Chesley, Ont.; and Steve van der Leest, president of The Overwaitea Food Group.

Hamilton was cited for her community activism and her perseverance in overcoming past obstacles, including the loss of her store to arson in 1998.

Hamilton and the other award recipients will be recognized at Grocery Innovations Canada 2011 on Oct. 24.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers is a trade association that represents more than 4,000 Canadian grocery retailers.