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A groundbreaking ceremony took place Tuesday for a housing development in Verdun.

But anyone hoping to get in on the ground floor of home ownership is already too late.

"We have sold out our project in a couple of weeks only," said District Atwater developer Alexandre Forgues.

Borough Mayor Jean-Francois Parenteau hopes the six-storey building, with commercial and residential tenants at De L'Eglise Ave. and LaSalle Blvd., will be good for one of the busiest street corners in Verdun.

"This corner is really important now. The area changed a lot with the new renovation at the Verdun Auditorium. Behind we have a beach now," said Parenteau.

Forgues admits it's a prime location.

"There are nice stores that are on Wellington St. as well, that offer you very good quality of life. You can just walk by everything here," said Forgues.

But the units in the building do not come cheap.

Three-bedroom condos sold for around $500,000, while four-bedroom units went for more than $800,000 each.

With those price points the project fails to address the concerns of those who were hoping for affordable, low-income housing.

But others, including the MNA for Verdun, say the project has its highlights.

With an emphasis on being sustainable, the building is supposed to include environmentally-friendly architecture and be surrounded by greenery.

"We need a green project, and this project is green," said Verdun MNA Isabelle Melancon.

Construction begins in earnest later this week and the building should be ready to hand keys to homeowners in November 2020.

With reporting from Julian McKenzie