Phase II begins for Drayton Reach lots

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Drayton Reach has been a project years in the making. Sectioned off into 39 lots, the 10-acre parcel that lay untouched for years is now for sale. Real estate broker Grant Dalgliesh is handling the sale of the lots with Skyline Properties.

In 2015, developer Jim Wong acquired the parcel of land from Whatcom-Skagit Housing, a non-profit organization similar to Habitat for Humanity that offers an affordable option for families to build their own homes. The non-profit had previously built the existing homes off Runge Avenue, known as Phase I of Drayton Reach. Phase I saw construction on 54 lots starting in 2008.

Phase II of the project began in September, when storm lines were installed on the remainder of the property. Utilities, including a sewer system and electrical lines, will be installed next. Roads will be paved once it warms up next spring.

The lots range in size from 7,000 to 18,000 square feet, and they range in price from $99,000 to $399,000. Six of the lots face the waterfront. Lots can be reserved with a refundable deposit.

“For people who are interested, it’s a no-brainer,” Dalgliesh said. “Someone can reserve one of these lots for $5,000 and that money is still theirs. If they don’t want it, then they can walk away.”

The lots are being sold to individuals instead of companies. The individuals will build their own custom homes on the land. The building process is intended to be owner-friendly.

Buyers must build their homes in accordance with city code standards. According to Blaine community development director Alex Wenger, 40 percent of the lots cannot be covered by homes, driveways, walkways or other structures, due to an “open air requirement.” Houses can be up to 30 feet tall, allowing for two stories.

“I welcome the diversity,” Dalgliesh said. “It won’t be cookie-cutter, because individual people will have their own designs. We will have some guidelines, like a homeowners association.”

Homeowners association (HOA) guidelines may include rules about fence heights, exterior paint colors and the location of parked boats and RVs. According to Dalgliesh, these guidelines will be liberal compared to the “draconian” rules of other HOAs.

“The kinds of things that we will have will be designed to increase the quality and value of the homes,” Dalgliesh said. “We’re not controlling the design standards. We’re not saying you need to have a certain kind of roof. You can do whatever fits within the city code for the zoning, which is single-family residence.”

Dalgliesh expects the homes to be around 2,000 to 3,000 square feet. Manufactured homes and tiny homes are not permitted. He said they are still working to determine a minimum size of the homes.

An up-to-date interactive map of the lots can be found at draytonreachlots.com. As of October 30, 13 of the 39 lots had been reserved.

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