THE first show home is going up in the new subdivision of La Seigneury in Lorette, the first fully serviced development to be opened in the rural community 19 kilometres southeast of Winnipeg.
Stefan Home Builders was the first to begin work on a display home that was well underway in mid-October, but the builder is expected to be joined before year's end by Ventura Custom Homes Ltd., a Winnipeg company that will be building four new homes in the subdivision, said developer Peter Thiessen, who owns the development under the corporate name of Adler Properties Inc.
"I expect there will be a show home up before the end of the year," said Thiessen, a former teacher in the community and a brand-new developer. By mid-October, 25 of the 45 available lots had been sold, a result that Thiessen said had exceeded his expectations.
"I feel that I am greatly blessed; I have sold many more than I expected to sell by this time."
Randy Douglas, president of Stefan Home Builders, said he responded to the opportunity to build in Lorette partly because of the large lots -- lots average 21 metres by 52 metres, according to Thiessen -- the development's proximity to Winnipeg, the country atmosphere, and its water and sewer services, a first for the rural area.
"Up until September (of this year), no development was allowed because the sewer could not accommodate the extra users," said Douglas. Then the town decided to invest in the new sewer system, paving the way for the new subdivision. Water will be supplied to the new development from wells.
Thiessen said there was some question whether buyers would be willing to spend $26,000 to $34,000 for a lot, a price that reflects the town's investment in servicing the area, but is satisfied the enthusiastic response of buyers will help set a new standard for subdivision development in Lorette.
At the same time, the tax base of the town should increase by $100,000 when the development is fully complete, he said. "This area can boom."
Community amenities include schools, a golf course, a sports complex, shopping facilities, doctor and other professional services.
Thiessen, a former history and geography teacher, said the Lorette area is also rife with historical significance in the settlement of Manitoba. "Main Street or Highway 207 is the main street of Lorette, but for me it is the Dawson Trail," said Thiessen.
"The Dawson Trail is named after Dawson who came to assess Western Canada in the late 1850s... Dawson was the engineer who was sent out to determine if there was really life in the western Prairies."
As a result, Thiessen said he has approached Manitoba Hydro in hope that the Crown utility would put up a wall mural that marks the Dawson Trail or Lorette's main street, a mural that would also border one edge of the new subdivision.