Fredericton / News / City stories
Cedar Valley Investment’s next project will be a two-building apartment complex at the corner of Rookwood Avenue and Waggoner’s Lane. The first phase of construction is due to begin in April 2021.

Cedar Valley Investments: Born from a love of building

Louie Youssef didn’t set out to be in the business of apartment buildings. His father operated an eight-unit building and when his parents started travelling back to Lebanon they needed one of their children to mind the building. His older brother had already started a career in another field, so the responsibility fell to Louie.

As he got more comfortable managing the property, Louie started thinking more and more about what it could become – not just an income property but part of a business that could help he and his family to retire comfortably someday. As he started expanding the business from eight apartment units to 35, he discovered a passion.

“What I do love is building – building new buildings and taking on projects,” says Youssef. With this focus, Youssef formed Cedar Valley Investments. And while it took a long time to build the business – “for 25 years, I always had to have another job,” he says – those long term efforts have paid off. Within the last decade, his business has rapidly expanded from 35 apartment units to 400.

“The last ten years have been really hectic,” he says. “In the last seven years, we’ve been crazy. And the last five years have been super crazy. And the next five years will be the busiest of the bunch.” One of the projects that will make the next several years so busy for Cedar Valley Investments is the new apartment complex set to be built at 264 Rookwood Avenue. The first phase of construction is due to begin in April 2021 with an eight-storey building with commercial office and retail space on the first floor and 11 residential units on each of the other floors. The second phase will be the construction of a slightly larger building with at least 91 residential units.

“The location of that building is pretty special,” says Youssef. “And the way that it’s going to be on the corner there, it’s going to have three faces facing the street – a face along Waggoner’s Lane, a face diagonal to the intersection and a face on Rookwood. The way that building is facing the street with a park in front of it and the exhibition grounds and the trail behind it is going to be a really unique development for the city.”

This is an important mixed-use building that will help ease the housing crunch currently facing thiscommunity,” said Coun. Bruce Grandy, Chair of the City’s Development Committee. “The project makes use of an underutilized lot in an area that already has many amenities in place for future residences, like ODell Park, shopping and schools."

Cedar Valley Investments operates entirely within Fredericton. Youssef says there are a couple of factors that make the city a very amenable place to develop new properties.

“Fredericton is still a pretty small-sized city, so you’re not dealing with a lot of different people at City Hall,” says Youssef. “The environment in Fredericton is very welcoming to development, especially since studies are showing that the population is in growth mode and there’s going to be dramatic growth over the next 20 to 30 years. We need housing if we’re going to accommodate that growth. It’s an exciting time to be a developer.”