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Meet Doug and Don, Developers of The Hotel McGibbon
Doug Pattison and Don Jackson are not your typical developers. This duo’s focus is as much on creating community as it is constructing a beautiful building. Doug’s artistic training and keen sense of architectural form is the starting point, and where their focus on artful development begins.
After 30 years developing commercial properties, the two are turning their attention and passions to creating the best mixed-use building possible in Georgetown. The two have lived and raised families in Georgetown for over three decades, and care deeply about the history and culture of the area. They want the location to remain recognizable, rooted in its past. More than that, the neighbourhood will be more vibrant and vital, ensuring it remains a community that thrives and grows.
When first considering the site, they thought, “This is a special place that can be a lot more, but what?” They realized that Georgetown had a lopsided housing mix. It has a lot of single family homes, but little of anything else. The McGibbon adds some much needed diversity to the housing stock for people with different lifestyle needs. There’s demand for a simpler, more manageable home that allows for a lock and leave lifestyle, without having to move out of Georgetown.
The building is evolving as a result of a community approach. Doug and Don report that the design has changed four times since starting several years ago. All of this change has been a result of community feedback. The massive terraces are a key amenity that emerged, affording owners the ability to connect to the outdoors and the neighbourhood. The neighbourhood itself is indeed an amenity with services, dining, medical, cultural, and entertainment options at residents’ doorsteps.
With an eye to making the building affordable and kind to the environment, Doug and Don decided that nothing less than geothermal technology was a priority. This allows for predictable energy costs for 30 years, saving energy and water, while eliminating noise pollution, respecting owners and the community.
Doug and Don insist on a truly collaborative effort. This doesn’t just mean the Town or designers and architects, but the community and potential buyers. They listen.
It has been a long but satisfying journey for Doug and Don. It’s so important to remember that the building has had many lives. We’re a long way from a time when a barn sat at the back of this site. Doug and Don want to celebrate the site and its history, and propel it forward with new purpose, giving the community something to love. We hope the community falls in love with this building again.
Photo Credit: Esquesing Historical Society