The City of Breda is offering 25 lots in a new housing tract that includes electrical, water and sewer hook-ups for $5,000. The housing project is located on the northwest side of the city. <span style="font-size: xx-small;"><em>Photo courtesy Paige Godden</em></span>
The City of Breda is offering 25 lots in a new housing tract that includes electrical, water and sewer hook-ups for $5,000. The housing project is located on the northwest side of the city. Photo courtesy Paige Godden
Wednesday, January 11, 2012

BREDA — City officials finished recently a new residential development on Breda’s northwest side.

Now, they need people to build houses there.

The $820,000 project comprises 25 lots with electricity, sewer and water hookups and streets that have curbs and gutters. The city will sell the lots for $5,000 apiece.

City Councilman Mike Schwabe said the city didn’t intend to compete with private developers — the city just needed room to grow.

Mayor Jim Ulveling said similar projects have been done in Glidden and Arcadia.

However, the two listed several reasons why Breda’s housing development could be more appealing: The lots vary in size and, for now, potential buyers can pick what direction they would like their home to face. There’s enough space for three-car garages, gardens, swing sets and anything else that people could want, Schwabe said.

Chris Shires, the development planning and inspection manager for West Des Moines, said city-created developments are rare in larger metro areas, but that “small towns, when they have a recognized need for housing that’s not being filled by the private sector, the towns step in.”

West Des Moines’ last such project was in 1998, when the city helped make a small townhouse development for people ages 55 and older.

Schwabe said that if a young family moves to Breda — a town of 475 residents — the city needs to show positive growth to get them to stay.

“If you can’t tell, we care a lot about our community, everyone does,” Ulveling said. “Not a lawn goes un-mowed.”

He said Breda hopes to have Western Iowa Network’s fiber-optic Internet and high-definition television available to its residents by next year.