July 19, 2017 | Marty Hope
Course community milestoneLooking back at 25 years of Heritage Pointe
"Lots of people thought we were crazy to build way out here in the boonies," said Carolina Oxtoby about her company's decision to develop a golf-course community on farmland south of Calgary.
It was 27 years ago when the land on Dunbow Road was purchased, and only two years later, the Heritage Pointe Golf Club was born, with big plans in the works for an upscale, country-residential community to complement it.
"Now, here we are celebrating our 25th birthday, and a lot has changed over that time," said Oxtoby, president and CEO of Heritage Pointe Properties, which has overseen every element of the development.
Heritage Pointe has twice been named winner of the Community of the Year Awards, and in 2013 received the distinction of Best New Community for its Artesia development from BILD Calgary Region, which represents the housing and development industries.
The community is made up of four neighbourhoods: Heritage Pointe, The Lake at Heritage Pointe, The Ranche at Heritage Pointe, and Artesia at Heritage Pointe.
The community has changed in some ways over the years, but what hasn't changed is the original plan for the golf club and the residential areas that have wrapped themselves around its three nine-hole tracks.
"We have not deviated one bit from the original vision," said Oxtoby. "It was made possible because of patient shareholders and the can-do attitude of our builder groups.
"The pioneering years were tough, no doubt, but there were a couple of events that have helped solidify Heritage Pointe's success."
"We have not deviated one bit from the original vision. It was made possible because of patient shareholders and the can-do attitude of our builder groups." - Carolina Oxtoby, president and CEO of Heritage Pointe Properties
The first occurred in 1997, when the community hosted the Street of Dreams, giving builders the opportunity to show off their wares with an impressive show-home parade.
The second event came in 2005, when Deerfoot Trail's southern expansion was completed, including an exit onto Dunbow Road that brought potential homebuyers – and more golfers – to the community entranceway.
Golf was, and still is, an important cog in the popularity of Heritage Pointe, Oxtoby says.
The golf course's 27 holes – split into three 9-hole tracks called Pointe, Desert, and Heritage – all offer challenging but enjoyable opportunities.
From the white tees, the Pointe course covers 2,752 yards, while Desert is 3,001 yards long and Heritage stretches 2,926 yards. From the gold tees, the distances are 3,318, 3,550, and 3,593 yards, respectively.
While golf was crucial to Heritage Pointe's success, so, too, was the decision to create a manmade lake for the community. "The lake was a huge marketing element for us – an important amenity in attracting buyers," said Oxtoby.
It will take another five years to reach final build-out in Artesia, which will mark Heritage Pointe's completion. Because of the lack of water resources available, there will be no further development or expansion of the community beyond that point, says Oxtoby.
"You know what I'm most proud of? I can drive through the community and look at what we've created," she said. "We have always thought our most important responsibility was to protect and enhance the land we were given to work with."
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