Courtesy Calgary Municipal Land Corp.
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The redevelopment of the East Village has brought new life to an area that was once a no man’s land of unsightly industrial buildings and decaying historic landmarks.

An influx of new residents has breathed life into the area, but as modern condo towers rose and filled up with buyers, one thing was lacking: rental options.

The Hat @ East Village will help fill that niche, as the community’s first purpose-built rental project, and it’s something the East Village Neighbourhood Association (EVNA) wholeheartedly supports.

“EVNA is supportive of developments and land-use changes within the community that enable mixed use, mixed income and increased diversity among its residents and businesses,” said Tom Jenson, director of the planning committee for EVNA.

“With the Hat nearing its completion, we are excited to have a rental tower in the area to help welcome new residents who may not otherwise have an opportunity to live in our exciting and growing community.”

Diverse housing options will help foster a sustainable community where residents can live, work and play.

“EVNA wants to ensure there are affordable places to live in our community for everyone, from the retail clerks in our local shops and cafes to the oil executives working in our neighbouring office towers.” – Tom Jensen, East Village Neighbourhood Association (EVNA)

The area has struggled to fill retail spaces, Jenson says, so new demographics would add more potential patrons and broaden the range of suitable business and employment opportunities.

The area currently has several seniors who pre-date the redevelopment, while new residents tend to be young professionals.

“EVNA wants to ensure there are affordable places to live in our community for everyone, from the retail clerks in our local shops and cafes to the oil executives working in our neighbouring office towers,” said Jenson.

Calgary Municipal Land Corp. (CMLC), the agency behind the East Village redevelopment, sold the land package at Fifth Street and Seventh Avenue S.E. to Cidex Developments, builder of other successful residential projects around the city.

The Hat is a 28-storey, mixed-use tower with 221 units, (66 studios and one-bedroom units, 123 two-bedroom units, and 32 three-bedroom units), a daycare and a retail component.

Jensen says a surprising number of families have moved into East Village, which was not expected when CMLC commissioned the Rivers District master plan. The community is now trying to add family infrastructure and the daycare will be a welcome addition.

CMLC’s ambition for residential in the area was to call for developers to provide varied multi-family offerings, says Clare LePan, CMLC’s vice-president of marketing and communications.

“We’re looking at partners with different price points and square footage to provide different opportunities for people at different stages in their life cycles,” she said.

The Hat @ East Village will have show suites and leasing information ready and available by this summer.