A prominent Edmonton homebuilder and developer is launching a unique competition with a $125,000 prize for one lucky business to set up shop at the new Stadium Yards development located next to Commonwealth Stadium and the Stadium LRT Station.
The Cut competition, by the Rohit Group of Companies, is open to creative businesses, restaurants and startup entrepreneurs with the winner receiving the grand prize in inducements designed to help elevate a business idea into a neighbourhood amenity in the mixed-use development.
“For a community like Stadium Yards to be successful, residents need to love the businesses and amenities surrounding where they live,” said Rohit Gupta, President of Rohit Group of Companies. “This couldn’t be possible without business owners who share our goals and want to be a part of this great community.”
The seven-acre urban village will eventually include more than 720 residential units and some commercial space. There will be access to dog parks and recreation along with retail amenities. The site is located on 84th Street just off of Jasper Avenue. It’s directly adjacent to the River Valley.
Marty Pawlina, the company’s Marketing Manager, said the development is located directly across the tracks from the Commonwealth Recreation Centre “which is just a stunning architectural feat of a building. Just a beautiful building with top notch facilities.”
He said Stadium Yards will have 7,500 square feet of commercial space.
“Our first phase of development is 243 residential units and the first commercial building which is the first thing that will come online is a 2,500-square-foot really high architectural, beautiful, standalone commercial building. So mixed-use is typically underneath the residential. In this case the mixed-use is a building that’s sort of nestled in the residential,” said Pawlina. “It’s a really neat concept. There’s two brand new urban parks . . . and this commercial building, the reason why it’s so special, it faces right onto the park.”
There are six residential buildings planned for the overall project with a commercial main street as well. The seventh building is the commercial one.
Pawlina said the commercial building will be the first to come online. It will be ready for occupancy in November. The first 96 suites for a residential building will be available for occupancy in November as well. The second building with the rest of the 243 units will be ready for the summer of next year.
The next phase will begin shortly after.
Pawlina said he can’t say how long it will be for the full build out of the project.
“If we have great leasing momentum and we see the right tenants coming in obviously we will prioritize the commercial main street and we’ll see that first. If we see better leasing momentum in the residential area – because they’re all rentals – then that will trigger us moving our next phase of residential. So we’re really closely watching what’s happening right now and we’re scaling our development to match demand that way,” he said.
Applications for The Cut competition can be submitted at www.stadiumyards.com/thecut and they close February 9.
The top five businesses short-listed will be invited to present their business plans to a panel of expert judges for the chance at being included in the new development.
The final event will be held on February 20 at Triffo Theatre at MacEwan University. The public is invited to attend, with free tickets available in advance through Eventbrite.
“We wanted to do something really unique. When you look at the culture of the area, when you have seven acres of core community, seven acres is a massive site. You can really define what’s going to operate there, how it’s going to connect, what that community looks like,” said Pawlina.
“We talk a lot about community connections. The word connections is really strong in this project . . . These residential buildings are going to be unique because they’re going to have all these shared use spaces.
“When it comes to this panel for the commercial businesses we bring it’s just as important. So we’re having this competition. A lot of people compare it to something like Dragons Den. We call it The Cut. Basically instead of putting a bunch of ads on billboards around the city saying ‘hey this is Stadium Yards’ or waiting for a typical commercial lease to occur, we’re taking all of that money and we’re making it a giant sort of boost to launch a really creative business and help it be sustainable within Stadium Yards.
“The first commercial building, this is our community hub as everything else is getting built and we really want to have that local flavour, that really unique concept that helps set us apart as a core community. So every piece of this development from the connection between neighbourhoods, the connection to the River Valley, the rec centre, the community connections with these shared spaces where people can meet each other and reduce urban isolation and really unique businesses, the culture of this area will be different than Edmonton has seen.”