WILLISTON, N.D. -An onslaught of housing is set to hit the booming Williston housing market with more than 2,126 units coming online this year. Amid that crush, the principal investors behind Eagle Crest Apartments are hoping to make not just an entrance, but a grand one.
For their opening ceremonies from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, the Paul Sawtell Quartet, a professional jazz ensemble being flown in from Seattle performs, and organizers are bringing in vintage automobiles and tractors from a couple of car clubs in Canada.
They’re also offering free burgers to what they hope will be 2,000 participants each day. Not only that, they’ve got a passport game that qualifies people for a chance to win either a trip for two to Seattle, a trip for two to Wyoming’s famous Snake River Lodge & Spa, a two-day golf outing for two at The Links of North Dakota, a $250 gift certificate to Menards, or $750 for a special evening at The Williston.
Parking will be free for the event and the public is welcome to attend. The development is at 3710 26th Street West.
“We’re not aware of an event like this in Williston yet,” said John Sessions, one of the Eagle Crest principals. “That could be our ignorance, but we are doing an invitation to all residents of Williston to participate.”
Eagle Crest includes 168 units in five buildings, 20 percent of which are affordable units for families with an income cap of about $35,000 for a family of four.
The low-income family units are already filled, but, as Sessions pointed out, residents come and go. “It’s still worthwhile to establish a relationship with us, even if we cannot get them a unit today,” he said. “My partner and I are both inclined toward a balanced development for a variety of needs, not just the top end of the market.”
The units, which feature high ceilings, bay windows and framed construction, represent an investment in the Williston community of more than $30 million.
They are 80 percent two-bedroom, 10 percent three-bedroom and 10 percent one-bedroom apartments. The one-bedrooms are also rented out already or $1,950 per month each.
The other units - mostly the two-bedroom apartments -- are at 50 percent occupancy.
The principals of this development will turn next to the Hawkeye Village project, Sessions said, a 160-acre development that includes 168 single-family dwellings as well as 57 duplexes.
“We’re building the roads now and expect to have the first single-family lots and sales center done by the end of the summer,” Sessions said. “Our first phase is 60 lots.”
Session said the housing market has continued to be strong for multi-family dwellings and single-family homes, despite the downturn in oil prices.
“We get calls all the time about how things are going,” he said. “Things are going well. We leased 29 apartments in April, almost one a day. If this is a bust, I’m not sure we could survive a boom. I’m exhausted as it is.”
While acknowledging the pain for oil-related workers who have been laid off, Sessions said the downturn has allowed some catchup work for others.
“We’ve gone from white to merely red hot,” he said. “It allows for some sorting and for business to become more efficient.”