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Council Approve Land Swap in Waterways

We have great news: We have acquired land for our next build, as Council approves our motion to exchange our land in Waterways.

After running into some issues that has rendered us unable to build on our lot in Waterways (purchased in 2010), we approached the RMWB last year to see if there was any opportunity to exchange land with the Municipality.

Yesterday, on July 7th Cameron Wilson, our Board Chair appealed in front of the council on behalf of Habitat Wood Buffalo. With a unanimous vote of 8-0, the council voted in favour of the land exchange.

“If there ever was a no-brainer, this is it. To me, let’s just exchange these pieces of land and look forward to a nice single family home on that lot and move on from there,” says Vinni.¹

Although the Municipality is not required to dispose of property for less than fair market value to a non-profit organization (Section 70, Municipal Government Act), the Council agreed to a straight land exchange, without any monetary transaction. This is despite the significant difference in the appraised value of the two lots.

“[Habitat for Humanity] had a part on a hill that didn’t seem too sufficient for them, it got swapped out for something else. We didn’t want to do what the MG [Municipal Government Act] commands us to do which is swap it at fair market value, we wanted to make sure that we were helping this non-profit,” said Mayor Melissa Blake.²

The existing building on our new land will be demolished by the RMWB. We are expecting to take possession in August.

“It’s a Great day for us. Land is always one of the biggest constraint for our organization, especially in our region. This is a win for Habitat Wood Buffalo–having a piece of land that we can build on and knowing that we can start working on building a home for our partner family soon. This is a big step forward. “On behalf of Habitat for Humanity Wood Buffalo, I would like to express our gratitude towards the council. I am very grateful for their decision. Thank you very much for your hard work and consideration.” – Cameron Wilson, HFH Wood Buffalo Board Chair


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1. “Habitat and the City to Swap Properties.” Mix1037.com 8 July 2015. Web. 8 July 2015. <http://mix1037fm.com/news/4424-habitat-and-the-city-to-swap-properties>. 
1. “Habitat and the City to Swap Properties.” Mix1037.com 8 July 2015. Web. 8 July 2015. <http://mix1037fm.com/news/4424-habitat-and-the-city-to-swap-properties>.

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