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Three separate projects could add hundreds of new homes, apartments in Point Edward

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Cathy Dobson 

Venetian Boulevard in Point Edward is positioned for a building boom next spring.

“There are very few good locations like this left in our area, that are close to the water, close to downtown, and within walking distance of golfing,” says local developer Alan Merrington.

He hopes to start construction next spring on 22 town homes and six semi-detached homes on five acres beside Venetian Boulevard, across from the federal Customs building.

Merrington says the upscale project features spacious, 2,000-square-foot, two-and-three bedroom units. Pricing isn’t confirmed, but they will be less than $800,000 per unit, he said.

“It will be a fenced community with a boardwalk along the canal and eight docks.”

Merrington purchased the land known as 1600 Venetian Blvd. three years ago and has been working his way through the planning process.

Work crews are already removing trees to make way for fencing, geotechnical work, and an archeology study.

“The plan is to replant as many as we can,” he said.

Merrington said he’s optimistic a number of studies can be completed by spring. A portion of the property is home to Butler’s garter snakes, a species-at-risk that will need to be relocated. More details can be found at www.venetian1600.com.

A separate housing development is planned almost immediately south of Merrington’s property.

Point Edward council recently reviewed artist concepts of a six-storey apartment building proposed for 1540 Venetian Blvd.

The developer wants to build 52 units on the 1.3-acre lot, for which a maximum 46 units are currently permitted, said planner Phil Rough.

That means applying for a minor variance, then completing traffic and noise studies, followed by the site plan application.

Mayor Bev Hand said the proposed apartment building appears to be large for the piece of land squeezed between the Mariner and Venetian Village buildings.

She noted neighbours will have an opportunity to weigh in before council considers the site plan.

The rendering shows a building with parking on the ground floor and five storeys of housing.

And those two developments aren’t the only ones working through the planning process in Point Edward.

As reported earlier, Sarnia developer Paul Wicks intends to build as many as 200 homes at the end of Exmouth Street overlooking the St. Clair River.

Village council backed him in agreeing the 23-acre property is not a protected woodlot, so Wicks is moving ahead on various studies and engineering he says could take two years to complete.

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