Whistle Bend lots on track for fall lottery

The next phase of Whistle Bend lots are on schedule to go to lottery this fall. Nearly 130 lots, most of them single-family, will be up for grabs.

The next phase of Whistle Bend lots are on schedule to go to lottery this fall. Nearly 130 lots, most of them single-family, will be up for grabs. More details should be released soon, said Jesse Devost, spokesperson for territory’s lands branch.

But there’s still a lot of property from phase one left over-the-counter for people to buy.

As of late last month, there were 67 single-family and four multi-family lots still available. Another lot has been put on hold because construction still needs to be done on it, said Rick Gorczyca with the lands branch.

Over 100 lots were released last September. Ninety were single-family lots and seven were multi-family.

Sales of the lots may seem slow, but they’re not terrible, said Gorczyca.

“It’s not as good as we would want it to be, but it’s not as bad as it could be,” he said.

The 250-hectare subdivision is envisioned to house 8,000 people. It will include parks, stores and a transportation system. The eight-phase subdivision is the largest in the Yukon’s history. It’s estimated to cost $270 million. The government has already spent around $60 million on the project.

It hasn’t been without controversy. There have been ongoing disputes between the government and Norcope Enterprises Ltd., the company hired to install water and sewage pipes in the first two phases of the subdivision, about work on the site. A lengthy trial was scheduled to take place this coming spring, but the two sides reached a confidential settlement in May.

Despite the legal battles, construction continues. Much of the area resembles a desert with piles of sand on vacant lots. And not many trees are there to offer shade for workers toiling under the sun.

Ben McPherson considers himself lucky. He and his wife snatched a duplex lot on Bailey Crescent in last fall’s lottery, one of the few lots along the greenbelt. “That’s why we picked it,” he said, pausing from his work.

Both he and his wife put their names into the fall lottery. They were looking to move to Marsh Lake. But they figured it’d cost the same to build a new house as it would to buy one, he said. And living in Whistle Bend would spare them the nearly hour commute into Whitehorse.

They got their first choice. They purchased the duplex with another couple. McPherson hopes to have the family moved in to the three-bedroom, storey-and-a-half unit by Christmas. He’s been working on the site all summer. Most of the time it’s been good, except for some “crazy rains” and a windy day that made the site feel more like Abu Dhabi, he said.

But he’s confident it could be a nice place to raise his two kids. Whistle Bend is a short drive from downtown, but with so few people living there now, it still feels out of the way, he said.

“I think it’s going to be a nice little spot,” said McPherson.

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