When it comes to explaining the merits of The Landing at Wood Lake, it’s hard to know where to begin, given that Troika Developments CEO Renee Wasylyk believes the project hits the sweet spot for proximity, pricing and popular things to do.
To begin with, she estimates the location in Lake Country to be about 3.5 hours drive from Chilliwack, 4.5 from downtown Vancouver, 6.5 hours from Calgary and 9.5 hours from Edmonton, all doable journeys within a day or two for those wanting a short holiday. Of course, there is also interest from people who are local already — or intend to be.
“(You’ve got) young professionals who want a modern townhouse, but don’t want the busy-ness or price of Kelowna or Vernon,” Wasylyk says. “Some of them are in the tech community, where they can work remote. It’s going to appeal to young families, too, whether they’re on vacation or living permanently here.”
She also believes those wanting to head into retirement in the Okanagan will give Lake Country some special consideration, particularly since the region is not subject to B.C.’s speculation tax, where additional tax is levied on homes left empty for significant periods. Pre-retirees may choose to spend longer vacations at The Landing before being ready to move permanently; the cost of holding on to a pre-retirement home could be a major factor in their purchasing decisions.
In addition to Wood Lake itself, Wasylyk says there are lots of amenities available to residents. The Okanagan Rail trail and Beasley Park are a 10-minute walk away. The latter includes a children’s playground, a beach complete with volleyball courts and soccer fields. Two golf courses are within 20 minutes drive, as is Kelowna International Airport, for those who might fly in and out of town.
Restaurants and wineries are in proximity for those who want to have a night out, while grocery stores, a mall and a pet food shop are nearby for supply runs. A general store is a four-minute walk away.
The commute to school is also fairly brief. Two elementary schools and a high school are just minutes away, while Okanagan College Vernon and the Okanagan campus of the University of British Columbia are estimated at a 15-minute drive.
Wasylyk and the team at Troika had a specific vision; they wanted the townhomes to be ‘square’ inside, rather than the typical long and skinny shoebox shape often used at other developments to squeeze out as much square footage as possible.
“These homes are bright and light, airy and spacious with a real open-concept feel; people underestimate what that looks and feels like,” she says. “To start with the floor plan and floor plate first and think through every inch and design based on that, that’s very different from the normal process. The architect evolved that forward in a very modern way.”
Wasylyk was drawn to the contrast of modern, urban homes in a quiet residential area, while still balancing true life needs of residents; she didn’t want the concept of clean lines to dominate over the real need for tucking in storage whenever appropriate. The team used wood accents and various textures to introduce homey, warm elements into the homes.
Purchasers can choose between different configurations: either a family-friendly three-bedroom home or a double master suite two-bedroom. They can also decide whether they would prefer to have a home spread over two or three storeys. All of the townhomes come standard with massive roof decks and two-car garages.
Wasylyk says Lake Country is doing a good job of preserving the best parts of existing neighbourhoods, while embracing an influx of people in the fast-growing community. Troika wanted to incorporate all of that with the design of The Landing.
“There’s always pressure between the old and new. We could have done a four-storey apartment building on this site,” she points out. “We went with two and three storeys fitted into the landscaping, maximizing livability instead of density. The flat roofs also mean lower sightlines and preserving views. The driveways and side-by-side garages offer lots of parking to minimize congestion – it’s about respectfully fitting in.”
Approximately 40 per cent of the homes have already been snapped up, and with construction set to begin soon, Wasylyk says purchasers could be moving in either late this year or early next year. She’s confident they’ll fully embrace the ‘small town’ feel of Lake Country, while enjoying all of the amenities and ‘big city’ conveniences they might want.
This article first appeared in the Vancouver Sun on July 6, 2019.