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After years of designing other people’s homes, interior designer Kim Cameron is finally planning her own, and having a blast.
The single mom is building a duplex with Shane Homes in Calgary’s Glacier Ridge community. It’s not the fanciest house she’s ever lived it, but she’s making it her own and loving it.
“I don’t think you need the biggest most attractive home. A small modest home can still be very beautiful and lovely to live in,” she says.
Cameron is downsizing from a large home in an estate community west of the city. When she set out to find her next, and most likely her retirement home, she had specific criteria. Her daughter is in university and her son is away playing junior hockey, so she still needed space for them. She needed a double garage and it had to be in a new but accessible community.
“I needed to keep it under $600,000, too,” she says.
Her city-wide tour of builder show homes and new communities helped to narrow the field. For a west end girl who’s always behind the wheel on her way to somewhere, the northwest felt the easiest to get in and out of. Glacier Ridge on the north side of Stoney Trail, a community by Anthem and Ronmor Developments, was geologically interesting and with a creek running through the neighbourhood, it had a wonderful natural feel to it. It was voted Best New Community in the 2022 Building Industry and Land Development (BILD) Calgary Region Awards.
“When you weigh everything, it is far north but I’ve been timing things, and because it’s right off Stoney it’s close to everything for me. There’s established retail close by. With my budget it’s a good location. I could afford everything I wanted in a house,” Cameron says.
Shane Homes, Cedarglen Homes, Morrison Homes and Trico Homes are the paired home builders in Glacier Ridge. Shane’s Cascade two-storey attached model at 1,632 square feet felt the most spacious.
“The layout is open. I love the main floor, which is prime real estate because it’s where you live. There’s corner kitchen with a window over the sink — it’s pretty and bright. It feels like a single-family home,” she says.
The Cascade has three bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, nine-foot ceilings in the basement and a front veranda. The builder was able to add in a double garage off the rear lane and work with Cameron’s upgrade requests while staying on budget.
“When I say upgrade, I didn’t do top of the line but I changed just about everything. I did black plumbing fixtures instead of chrome. As a designer, I have a critical eye about those things,” Cameron says.
She describes her experience in Shane’s selection centre, as one interior designer working with another, as fun. The builder’s customizable approach to interior selections was another reason by she wanted to work with them.
“When I’m designing with people, it’s all about the owner. It’s not about what anybody else thinks. It’s about what speaks to you. With Shane, I went to the lighting store and I had so much fun. I knew exactly what I wanted. And it’s the same way with any other buyer — I didn’t get special treatment,” she says.
Cameron is working with the builder on a series of YouTube videos documenting her buying journey and selection process to be hosted on her channel called Design Behind the Scenes.
Paired homes were so popular in Glacier Ridge that the current phase is sold out with another phase, which will include green space lots, expected to be released this fall.
Plans are in the works for the Glacier Ridge Resident’s Association amenity building and six-acre park which will include an outdoor skating rink, barbecue and firepit area and basketball court.
COMMUNITY: Glacier Ridge
DEVELOPER: Anthem and Ronmor Developments
BUILDER: Shane Homes
HOME MODEL: The Cascade Paired Home
SIZE: 1,632 square feet, three bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, option for rear garage
PRICE: Prices for new phase is being determined.
INFORMATION: The show homes are located at 81 Edith Gate N.W. or visit shanehomes.com/communities/glacier-ridge