Tumbler Ridge’s New Housing Construction

As you drive along the sleepy streets of Tumbler Ridge when it is dark at night, you can see it commanding the horizon. But to see it by daylight you certainly get a better idea of the exceptional detailing that will be the newest and most elaborate house in town.

J & E Home Builders residential Tumbler Ridge Inc. is a business partnership between Eric Antkowiak and Joe Feirro. You can tell from the two that they are good friends and dispel the myth that many believe, that they are father and son. Antkowiak fondly calls Joe ?Pa?, but truth be known, they were once two strangers.

Antkowiak came to Tumbler Ridge after hearing of the low price housing and was taken with its obvious appeal. He saw the potential for a good lifestyle for adults and kids and also the recreational aspect. Prior to his arrival here in 2001, Antkowiak spent 10 years in Ontario as a subcontractor before heading to Calgary and then finally to this community. He has 20 years experience in the construction business and so J & E was born.

His partner, Joe Fierro, was a shipwright (boat builder) years ago. He came from Vancouver in 2002 and arrived here for many of the same reasons and favoured retirement. No luck there, as the two are very busy and take on a few projects a year to dedicate themselves to their current jobs. Before the building of this new house, the usual contracts they busied themselves with were renovations.

Antkowiak and Fierro are building a large home along the top area in the upper bench, overlooking the streets and houses below. The house itself is 1588 square feet, with 9-foot vaulted ceilings and 16-foot in the great room. The great room, which will have hardwood floors, meets up with the kitchen via an eating bar/island, which promises to entice anyone who loves a nice kitchen. The countertops throughout the kitchen will be done in granite. Also in the kitchen is a bay window with a large sill suitable for growing herbs or plants. The corner pantry is a prerequisite for new home construction.

The main floor has three bedrooms. Antkowiak and Fierro affirm that certain elements can be customized to the individual in the early stages of building. This particular house will be a show home and the design has more or less been set. The choices left would be things like paint color, etc.

The entrance foyer will be finished with marble heated flooring. Ahhh, can?t you just imagine padding around in the winter on the floor barefoot? By far one of the most spectacular features of this home is the wall of full-size windows that create a nearly panoramic view. The windows are all e-argon glass, which keeps the heat out during summertime and the warmth in during winter. A French door on either side of the windows leads out to the sundeck, which sits high above the ground and overlooks a view of the town as well as clear view of the mountains beyond. The basement has very large windows and is very spacious, meant for a home office or central family space. There are several bathrooms throughout.

The exterior of the house will be finished in stucco with stone columns that connect in an archway in the front. The roof is made of shale and there is a double garage attached to the front. J & E is hoping to have an open house, possibly in May. The house is a higher-end class of home and therefore will be considered in the high-end market.