The Calgary Herald’s Josh Skapin explores cSpace and its transformation from historic school site to burgeoning mixed-use community in south Calgary with the groundbreaking of The Edward by Section23 Developments.

An iconic sandstone building on 29th Avenue S.W., which operated as King Edward School from 1912 to 2001, was acquired by social enterprise cSpace, and redeveloped as a multi-tenant incubator for artists.

With more than 45,000 square feet of multi-disciplinary creative work spaces, the development dubbed cSpace King Edward will be flanked by buildings with full-time residents.

Land that once served as the west and east school yards of the King Edward were sold by cSpace to Rockwood Custom Homes and Section23 Developments, respectively.

Rockwood’s development called the Residences of King Edward is under construction, and Section23 turned shovels on the Edward earlier this month.  The Edward will offer independent seniors living with suites that will be available for lease.

“The mother of my long-time friend, Lynden Gill, once suggested that we should develop friendships in every generation to stay current on what is important in their lives,” says Robert Ollerenshaw, founder and executive chairman of Section23 Developments.

Section23’s recent residential work includes executive townhouses in inner-city Hillhurst and executive paired homes in the southeast Calgary community of Mahogany.

“With Section23’s construction of the Edward, the cSpace King Edward arts hub redevelopment plan will become a multi-generational community where people of all ages will interact with each other and be engaged,” says Ollerenshaw. “Instead of aging in place, residents of the Edward will be aging in community.”

The upscale Edward development will contain 95 residential suites ranging from 390 to 917 square feet. This five-level concrete building will also boast amenities such as an upscale restaurant, casual bistro, private dining room, piano bar, theatre fitness and wellness space, spa, creative arts centre, theatre, and rooftop garden.

It’s expected to offer pre-leasing in 2019 and occupancies in 2020.

The Residences of King Edward, composed of 19 single-level flats ranging from 1,415 to 3,700 square feet, experienced early success. With possessions expected in July 2019, the development that started in price from $1.1 million is now sold out.

“With the Residences of King Edward, we launched a new and truly unique way of living in Calgary,” says Allison Grafton, president of Rockwood Custom Homes, “and the market spoke — loudly. The luxurious, and original, fully custom single-level flats sold out in just over a year since our groundbreaking ceremony last June.

“Our homeowners are thrilled to make their new homes amidst art, theatre and culture in Calgary’s inner-city — a true legacy address.”

Reid Henry, president and CEO of cSpace Projects, says the site is poised to be something special.

“I’ve worked internationally, I’ve worked across Canada on regeneration projects and things like this in the past,” he adds. “This is one of, if not the leading project, in mixed-use development that (I’ve found), around an arts vision, globally.

“Many champions have helped us over the last few years to achieve our collective vision for transforming the school and the site,” Henry said during the ground-breaking event for the Edward.

“This is about the legacy that we are, collectively, building together as a partnership for future generations,” he adds.

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