Family partnership predicts growth for Calabogie

After 30 years, a two-family partnership has decided the time is right to sell about 60 hectares of land around the Madawaska River in Calabogie.

The Hall and Murphy families bought the land from Ontario Hydro in 1985. Since then, the Hall family had been using it for its forestry industry interests through its company, Opeongo Forestry Service.

Leo Hall, managing partner of the Hall-Murphy partnership called Barrett Chute Inc., said the move to sell now will mean good things for the area and its surrounding businesses.

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“The real thing that drove us to do it was we were hearing more and more from both private individuals and civic leaders was that the ability to grow population of people that were around and using these amenities was restricted by a lack of the kind of thing we’re offering,” Mr. Hall said.

The land is separated into 53 lots, with the first phase of 33 available for sale now.

In a release issued Wednesday, the families said the lots were “designed to preserve the local habitat and capture the area’s stunning views.”

While the idea of development and preserving local habitat don’t always go hand and hand, Mr. Hall said there are restrictions in place for what prospective buyers can and cannot do on their properties.

“We have some proposed restrictions on the amount of land that can be cleared, for example,” he said.

No more than half of the lot size can be cleared, according to the Barrett Chute website.

“What we noticed is the area seems to be passing a threshold whereby it has a certain critical mass of pretty attractive recreational and leisure activities that have gained in popularity gradually over time,” Mr. Hall said in reference to the nearby Calabogie Peaks ski resort, golf club and race track, not to mention hiking and cross-country skiing trails.

He said the lots offer an opportunity to attract people to the area one hour west of Ottawa.

“Our belief is that we’re right on the cusp of a pretty big expansion of interest in the area,” he said.

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