Here we grow again. The people who brought you the popular community of Drake Landing is creating another beautiful master-planned neighbourhood in Okotoks.
United Communities is turning 113 hectares (280 acres) on the edge of the D’Arcy Ranch Golf Course into an exciting new development to be named, simply, D’Arcy. The name comes from one of the original owners of the land where the golf course now lays, the D’Arcy Family. This area was first homesteaded by the Bain family and the land changed hands several times until the D’Arcys took hold of it. The first school was also located here in the late 19th Century.
When the D’Arcy family decided to sell the land, they stipulated that there had to be a positive vision for its future. The golf course has honoured that request as it’s a public course, accessible to everyone.
United Communities, which is also the driving force behind the Nolan Hill and Sage Hill neighbourhoods in Calgary and Strathmore’s “The Ranch”, took on the challenge and will devote the new community to quality.
Marketing director Steve LePan told the Okotoks Western Wheel that United Communities is looking forward to developing D’Arcy in Okotoks which is a town with rich history and a strong identity.
The new D’Arcy development has been approved by the Town of Okotoks. He said when the United team was creating initial designs for the development, the plan was to create more than just a neighbourhood. It had to be a community that would inspire people to connect with each other.
The future D’Arcy neighbourhood will border the golf course with Northridge Drive on the east side, Sandstone Gate on the south side and on the north, Northgate Circle.
As it stands, there will be room for about 2,000 new homes in D’Arcy. That includes entry level homes, move-up homes and executive detached residences, plus multi-family developments. LePan declared that United Communities and builder partners believe that this new community will attract potential buyers that might also be looking at some of the new developments on the far south end of Calgary. Okotoks is just 10 minutes away from many of Calgary’s newer neighbourhoods between 194 Ave and 201 Avenue on the south side.
United Communities is expected to announce participating builders and release the style of architecture and building standards for D’Arcy. Building should begin early next year with sales possibly starting in the Fall 2017.
Like most new suburban communities, there will be ample green space in D’Arcy – at least 12 hectares. Parks and pathways are part of the community design, part of United Communities’ mandate to create connections in the neighbourhood. With school reserves planned, the current renderings show a “safe route network”, a purpose-built pathway route for children to walk to school.
There is a commercial district planned, a “high street” concept which would be walkable and village-like according to LePan.
Okotoks town council has already weighed in for street names for the area which will be named after species of plants found in the Sheep River district. Another new neighbourhood, Wedderburn, will have streets named for Sheep River tributaries. The mayor of Okotoks, Bill Robertson, says the names will be educational for local residents. A precedent has already been set in the Tower Hill community where street names come from former mayors and early Okotoks families.