ERA at 22255 Dewdney Trunk Road Maple Ridge 143 condos in phase 1 by Johnston Meier and SwissReal Developments

Thursday, November 7th, 2019

A Master Plan Community In Maple Ridge

Kathleen Freimond
The Province

An enormous master-planned community called ERA is poised to transform downtown Maple Ridge, eventually becoming an amenity-rich neighbourhood with some 1,000 homes.

When complete, the project being established by Johnston Meier and SwissReal Developments will also include parks, amenities like an amphitheatre and retail and commercial units.The first phase includes 143 market condos and townhomes and 49 rental units.

Peter Hildebrand, principal at Iredale Architecture, says the city’s designation of the southeast corner of the site on the corner of Dewdney Trunk Road and 224 Street as the new civic centre of Maple Ridge is the impetus behind the seven-phase ERA development.

Hildebrand notes that Maple Ridge’s location between the dense urban environment in Vancouver and communities like Chilliwack and Hope in the Fraser Valley influenced the master plan and the architecture.

“We wanted to have a sensitive approach that touched down gently. The result is a less dense site, and that has allowed us to be more flexible in the outdoor space, introduce more space between the buildings themselves and create meeting areas in the landscaping to foster neighbourliness and create a truly livable community,” he says.

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There are condos in the six-storey north and five-storey south buildings, with 30 townhomes — the developers call them ‘city homes’ — in the centre of the first phase bounded by Plaza Street, Brown Avenue and Dewdney Trunk Road. The south building, on Dewdney Trunk Road and Plaza Street, will include retail units to provide residents with local amenities like shops and services.

The architecture in phase one speaks to the area’s agrarian past when buildings like barns would have been plentiful and this influence has softened the lines of the design, says Hildebrand.

Jeremy Towning, vice-president of SwissReal, says development of the entire community on the almost eight-acre site will take about 10 years and will eventually be home to between 1,500 and 1,700 people. Construction of the first phase of condos and townhomes is scheduled to start later this year with the first homeowners expected to move in after completion in two years.

Towning anticipates buyers of homes in the initial phase will be a mix of first-time buyers and downsizers. Amenities in this phase will include a playground and rooftop terraces on the north and south buildings, while the north building also features an indoor social space connected to the terrace with a kitchenette and dining area. The south building will include a gym.

For the interiors, Megan Bennett of Megan Bennett Design aimed for a timeless design and selected materials to endure both, in design intent and durability.

Buyers can choose from a light or dark colour palette. Countertops in both palettes are a marble-look quartz, while Italian-inspired kitchen cabinetry is white in the light scheme and grey in the darker option. Bennett notes that with the plethora of home design and improvement programming on television and social media sites like Pinterest, buyers are becoming more and more discerning.

She points to the Shaker-style kitchen cabinetry with one-and-a-half-inch rails (compared to the more usual two-and-a-half inches) designed to appeal to buyers with traditional and contemporary tastes. Finishes like the black matte faucets and hardware in the kitchen and bathrooms is a step-up from the chrome finishes in many new developments, adds Bennett.

“The interiors are designed to be universally appealing – when people move in they can decide on their own touches and furnishings to make the space their own,” she says.

Depending on the floor plan, kitchens have an island or peninsula with a double sink. In the two-bedroom, two-bathroom show suite (plan D2) at the sales centre at 22351 Dewdney Trunk Road, the white subway tile backsplash – with the tile laid vertically – adds an interesting element in the kitchen.

The slide-in gas range and a stainless steel hood fan creates a focal point in the kitchen, while the microwave is under-counter in the perimeter cabinetry. Open shelving enhances the airy ambience, while Lazy Susans ensure access to the two corner cupboards.

In the dining room in the display suite, a built-in hutch — an optional extra — makes best use of a nook and provides plenty of extra storage.

A vanity with double sinks, a bathtub and a separate shower with glass enclosure make for an elegant and practical ensuite bathroom, Bennett says, while the black border around the mirror complements the black matte plumbing fittings and hardware.

ERA is conveniently located close to city hall, the library and a leisure centre. Residents travelling to Vancouver can take the West Coast Express from Port Haney station, and the B-Line bus service connects commuters with the Coquitlam SkyTrain station.

The parks and landscaping in the first phase will set the precedent for the development’s central ‘green spine.’

 “It’s going to influence future phases and become a real community asset. It will encourage people – not just residents, but people from the entire community – to walk from the first phase through the other phases [to the civic core],” says Daniel Hawreluk, principal at Iredale Architecture.


Project address: 22255 Dewdney Trunk Rd. (224th and Dewdney), Maple Ridge

Developer: Johnston Meier and SwissReal Developments

Architect: Iredale Architecture

Interior designer: Megan Bennett Design

Project size: Phase 1: 143 condos and city homes with one to three bedrooms (approximately 1,000 homes in the master-planned community)

Unit size: Condos: 615 – 1,335 square feet; city homes: 1,400 – 1,500 square feet

Price: one bedroom from $350,900; one bedroom and den from $370,900; two bedroom from $416,900; two bedroom and den from $506,900; three bedroom from $616,900; three bedroom and den from $651,900; city homes from $626,900

Sales centre: 22351 Dewdney Trunk Rd.

Sales centre hours: noon to 5 p.m., Sat — Thurs

Phone: 604-239-1898


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