Highlands on Hold
The City of Vernon says they've had so many inquiries about the status of the Highlands of East Hill Development, they issued a statement to clarify the City's understanding of the situation.
"The development is proposed to be built on the site of the former McMechan Water Reservoir. The development lands are currently owned by the City. The City has a contract to sell the lands to Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited. The City and Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited have a disagreement over the interpretation of the contract.
As with all other developers, the City has full intention to treat Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited fairly and equitably, within the scope of the City's legislative authority.
The development lands have been rezoned and the development permit (conditional on purchase of the lands) for phases 1-6 and phase 8 of the project has been issued. The City has advised Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited on all applicable processes once the sale has completed, and has discussed with Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited the means to address construction and permit processes in an expeditious manner.
The City has also advised Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited that the City is ready and willing to complete the sale of the development lands, and has delivered to Vernon Reservoir Developments Limited's lawyers (in trust) the documents necessary to do so. "
The Developer posted this message for homeowners on their website earlier this week:Dear Homeowner,
It is with a great deal of disappointment that we must advise you The Highlands project is put on hold with no clear commencement date. As a result, this morning our Team has issued instructions to the trust agents of your deposits (Baillie Law, Porter Ramsay, 3% Realty and Remax Vernon) to immediately issue deposit refunds to all our 46 Pre-Sale Homeowners.
Decisions of this magnitude do not come lightly but the impact on you as a future Homeowner is the most important area of concern for us.
The question that we are all asking is, why would a new community with over $24,000,000 in Pre-Sales be put on hold indefinitely? The answer is that at 3:21 PM August 1st, the City of Vernon through its Legal Council informed the Developer, that the Developer could no longer rely on the commitments made by the city. Most of those commitments are related specifically to permits or city-controlled costs.
This means that the cities commitments regarding the timing of providing building permits, engineering approvals, site access agreements were also rescinded.
The increased risk of these actions directly impacts the timing and as the city would be in a position to make changes to previously approved draft agreements or impose further project costs or even change the project as they had threatened to do on May 27th by raising the issue of the 43rd Ave entrance.
Again, for context and as a single example, if we continued forward, but the city missed any commitment or permit deadline that resulted in a delay of the project by 3 weeks or more, we would not be able to complete the installation of asphalt which would restrict us from legally being able to transfer home title’s on completed homes until approximately June of 2020 regardless of the completion of the construction of the homes
The Highlands of East Hill Team will be contacting all Homeowners on Wednesday, August 7, to provide additional information and specific answers to your questions.
We welcome any of our Homeowners or Clients to feel free to email or call to arrange an appointment for an in-person meeting.
On behalf of all of us at Vernon Reservoir Development we apologize for the inconvenience and stress this has caused your family.
Vernon Reservoir Development Ltd.