Courtesy Mount Pleasant Community Association
March 05, 2021 | Andrea Cox
Golf course connections: for residents of Valley Ridge, all paths lead to the linksThe soft summer breeze rustles through the tall stands of mature Aspen trees and prairie grasses in the lush valley on the northwest edge of the city. Here nature sits untouched, a picture perfect backdrop for the homes that grace the ridge above. Nearby, the voices of happy children ring out, as they ride their bikes in the cul-de-sacs connecting the homes. And anchoring it all is a beautiful 18-hole golf course. This is Valley Ridge, home to almost 6,000 residents. Most live in single-family homes (93 per cent) and the area is almost entirely owner-occupied, leading to a connected community with a vibrant and engaged feel.
Curtis Robertson, director of golf at the Valley Ridge Golf Club, says the semi-private club located on the northern edge of the community acts as a social connector. "Our membership is comprised of over 40 per cent of residents in the community and they all know each other through leagues and member events," he said.
The community is situated next to the rural community of Springbank and is bordered by the Bow River on the southern perimeter and the Trans-Canada Highway to the north. Many know it as the former site of the Happy Valley Campground, a vacation mecca that was closed in the late 1980s when the lands were annexed by the City of Calgary. The golf course was eventually carved out from the campground lands.
"The piece of property is outstanding. The front nine is along the river and the views are beautiful, and the back nine is a totally different layout – there are houses along the back of the course and then it weaves up top through the community," said Robertson.
Valley Ridge Golf Club's semi-private model seems to be working in an age when many millennials are choosing recreation activities that require less of a time commitment. "We have nine-hole options and also a five-hole loop aimed at families. It's a great price – $89 for a family of four and that includes a meal and tee-times," said Robertson.
"The piece of property is outstanding. The front nine is along the river and the views are beautiful, and the back nine is a totally different layout – there are houses along the back of the course and then it weaves up top through the community." Curtis Robertson, director of golf at Valley Ridge Golf Course
But the club is about more than just golf – it has undergone several renovations over the years. The 20,000-square-foot clubhouse offers banquet rooms, a restaurant, a lounge overlooking the course and a pro-shop. The deck offers a great place to sit and relax while enjoying the tranquil and beautiful scenery.
Valley Ridge is a mature community with all of the standard amenities, but for those wanting to create a new-build home, Valley Ridge Estates, which is nestled onto the ridge overlooking the Bow River Valley, has a few lots available, including some that back on to a large environmental reserve.
Because of its location and amenities, Valley Ridge seems to have weathered the recession well.
Certainly, there are opportunities to purchase a single-family home or townhome. According to CREB®'s monthly housing statistics for June, benchmark single-family home resale prices in the west region of the city, which includes Valley Ridge, were up 1.06 per cent over the previous month and 6.79 per cent year over year, sitting at $734,000.
Perhaps it's the draw of the age-old and timeless sport of golf that has cushioned the area from the effects of the recent financial storm. "It's a great game and the Valley Ridge course is challenging with lots of water and sand, and it's so beautiful," said Robertson.