The former Schneider’s meat plant in Kitchener is getting a massive redevelopment, thanks to a London builder.
Auburn Developments plans to bring more than 2,000 homes, and commercial development to the Courtland Avenue site. It is the third major core-area redevelopment project by Auburn in Kitchener-Waterloo.
“It is not too often you find a site like this close to downtown, it is an area of transition,” said Stephen Stapleton, vice-president of Auburn.
“It’s an area of opportunity, to build neighbourhoods and communities that are close to the core.”
The site has been vacant for three years and features 750,000 square feet of office and industrial buildings. Auburn will try to keep some of the original buildings, said Stapleton.
“It’s like a blank canvas, it can revive this area of the city. We are excited about it.”
The site is close to the city’s rapid transit line, and the downtown core.
“They are very welcoming,” Stapleton said of why Auburn builds there.
“They are not afraid of intensification, they realize their cities need to be intensified and support that and that attracts builders.”
Auburn is busy in London, too, with six subdivisions now being built in the city, and a proposed residential highrise development on Wellington Street, across from Victoria Park, that is now before the city.
“This has been a three-year journey,” said Peter Whatmore, vice-president of commercial realtor CBRE, who brokered the deal.
“It is a robust, innovative market and people there are receptive to these developments. This is a game-changer for that area.”