Town development grows despite economic recession

New development and building activity in the Town of Stettler in 2009 was up significantly over the previous year.

Celebrate a new partnership – The new joint administrative building of the Town of Stettler and Clearview School Division at the northeast corner of Main Street and 51 Avenue (Highway 56) was one of the major building projects in the Town of Stettler completed in 2009

Celebrate a new partnership – The new joint administrative building of the Town of Stettler and Clearview School Division at the northeast corner of Main Street and 51 Avenue (Highway 56) was one of the major building projects in the Town of Stettler completed in 2009

New development and building activity in the Town of Stettler in 2009 was up significantly over the previous year.

Building permits in the town totaled $18,155,246, up from $15,140,858 in 2008 and $15,970,374 in 2007, according to figures released from Leann Bateman, planning and development clerk.

“Institutional, commercial and industrial development was definitely up,” said Bateman.

‘When we look at last year and the previous year, we project a strong year ahead of us.”

By category, building permits totaled:

• Institutional – $8,109,175 ($4,815,678 in 2008).

• Commercial – $5,499,806 ($1,267,218 in 2008 and $662,034 in 2007).

• Residential – $3,922,304 ($8,996,362 in 2008 and $13,186,096 in 2007).

• Industrial – $623,960 ($61,600 in 2008 and $4,887,582 in 2007).

Major renovations to William E. Hay Composite High School valued at $6.49 million and Christ-King Catholic School valued at $1.6 million and the new Canadian Tire building at $3.45 million account for the largest building activity.

“We had several commercial businesses who renovated their premises, trying to beat the economic downturn,” said Bateman.

Residential development was slow for the second successive year during the economic downturn although permits were issued for 19 new residential units, said Dave Dittrick, contract development and planning officer with ZAP Municipal Consulting Services Inc.

“We are pleased with this residential development and the town has a number of different residential projects planned for 2010.”

That includes plans to add mobile home units and a project in the Meadowlands area by a developer to build several homes with funding available for people to make a down payment.

“If the mobile home subdivision starts and the attainable housing project in Meadowlands takes off, then we will see residential numbers increase,” said Bateman.

Also, if ATCO Electric builds on the 10 acres of land they purchased in the industrial subdivision in the northeast part of town, development values could rise higher, she said.

Watch next week for a story about development in the County of Stettler.