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At Weavers Way, Minto steps out into Almonte

Ottawa-area community targets first-time buyers and downsizers; to offer 530 towns and single-detached homes

Minto expects pricing at its Weavers Way community in the Ottawa-area town of Almonte to be about $100,000 lower than many developments within the city itself. (Courtesy Minto)
Minto expects pricing at its Weavers Way community in the Ottawa-area town of Almonte to be about $100,000 lower than many developments within the city itself. (Courtesy Minto)

Minto Communities Ottawa is taking a step outside of its traditional stomping grounds to the nearby town of Almonte, where it plans to build a single-family and townhome community tailored to first-time buyers.

Weavers Way, sitting on a 33-hectare parcel of land at 1218 Old Almonte Rd., is a two-phase project planned for 530 lots. The first phase will consist of 210 single-detached houses and townhouses, followed by a second phase of 320 units.

“(We) never ventured outside the City of Ottawa to build. It’s our first venture outside,” Anthony Minchella, vice-president of sales and marketing for Minto Communities Ottawa, told RENX Homes.

Prices are aiming to be “attainable” at Weavers Way - considerably lower than Minto’s communities in Ottawa's west-end Kanata neighbourhoods such as Brookline and Parkside at Arcadia.

The developer opted for Almonte, a town of approximately 6,000 residents about a 40-minute drive from downtown Ottawa, because it offered more opportunity to build and a welcoming local government.

“Almonte was very receptive to having us come to town. They wanted a different product brought to market — smaller towns, smaller price points, which was not available. It was a bit of a gap in the marketplace.”

The name Weavers Way is a tip of the hat to the town's history - its early development was in large part due to the textiles industry.

The first phase of Weavers Way

Phase 1 of Weavers Way is planned to have 100 single-detached houses and 110 townhouses.

The single-detached houses will range from 30-foot, 36-foot and 43-foot lot variants. Floor space will range from under 1,800 square feet to approximately 3,450 square feet, with three-bedroom to six-bedroom offerings.

The townhouses will be comprised of 38 avenue towns - three-storey, back-to-back units - and 72 two-storey traditional townhouses which Minto also refers to as executive townhouses.

Sizes for the three-storey back-to-back townhouses will range from 1,200 square feet to just under 1,400 square feet, with choices of two- to three-bedroom units.

The two-storey executive townhouses will range from 1,650 square feet to as much as 2,300 square feet. The number of bedrooms will span three to six. A flexible plan means the dens and basements can also be transformed into additional bedrooms.

With recent increases in intergenerational living and work-from-home arrangements, Minchella said the adaptable design meets those two emerging needs.

Pricing is expected to be approximately $100,000 lower than Minto’s Kanata communities within Ottawa's urban boundary. For example, a two-storey executive townhouse in Kanata is currently priced in the low-$600,000 to $700,000 range; Weavers Way will be priced from the low $500,000s to high $500,000s.

A single-detached unit in Minto's Kanata communities costs from the mid-$750,000s to $1.1 million, but Weavers Way will have similar housing from the mid-$600,000s to just over $1 million.

The pricing reflects Minto’s customer expectations: young, first-time buyers priced out of larger cities, or downsizers who want a quieter lifestyle, Minchella explained. First-time buyers, Minto expects, will make up 60 per cent to 70 per cent of its customer base.

Sales for Phase 1 are planned to launch in late September or early October, with construction starting in 2025. Sixty to 80 homes are planned to be built per year. Minto is targeting first closing or occupancy in Q1 2026, with closings taking place from 2026 to 2028.

Looking ahead to Phase 2

Phase 2 of Weavers Way is planned to add another 320 units to the community, with a starting date dependent on the marketing and sales of Phase 1.

A seven- to eight-year construction and sales cycle is expected for Phase 2. If the sales volume is higher than anticipated, Minto may close up to 90 to 100 units per year, Minchella said.

While the development will not include any retail or commercial space, Weavers Way will be a three-minute drive to Almonte’s commercial spaces, and within driving distance to neighbouring communities Carleton Place and Kanata.

As part of Weavers Way, a 2.4-acre park with a play area is planned for Phase 1 and a smaller, secondary park for Phase 2.

Adding a new product to Almonte

Though he could not speak in depth about the development process, Minchella said gaining approval for Weavers Way went smoothly, as Almonte was receptive to the project.

“The city was really willing to work with us to get this community, bring it up to market. They want additional people living in Almonte,” he said.

Minto identified Almonte's assets as a town with history and a quiet atmosphere that is close to larger retail options in Carleton Place and Kanata. Minto had also sought a location to compete with its peers in the housing markets surrounding Ottawa.

“We were really looking at periphery communities . . . We do not want to go into markets that are saturated by other builders who already set shop in those municipalities,” he added.

Joining Minto’s Ottawa area developments

In Ottawa, Minto launched sales at its Anthem community last fall with sales expected to continue for another three years. Phase 3 of Riverbend at Harmony was announced in the spring, which is expected to go to market in August or September, Minchella said.

Minto’s Avalon community is likely to sell out this fall, he said, and then Phase 2 is expected to add another 600 lots over the next seven to eight years.

Closer to Almonte, Minto is also developing the communities of Brookline, Parkside at Arcadia and Abbott’s Run. The builder expects that inventory to take about five to seven years to fully build out.

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