House Design Considerations at Galena Shores

Walk Outs

49 of the 60 lots at Galena Shores are specifically sited and designed to have walk out basements. We did this to take advantage of the natural ~ 10% grade that is found consistently throughout the Galena Shores development. The other 11 lots (9-13 and 55-60) that are not natural walk out lots, could still be utilized as such providing the owner was prepared to curve the driveway to the back of the property. All of these lots are over 110' (33 meters) in width and 250'- 400' deep (90 - 130 meters) in depth. Walk outs also work well with secondary suites (lock-offs), which is our next topic.

Secondary Suites (Lock-Offs)

The zoning on Galena Shores allows accessory buildings and secondary suites (lock-offs). This has the following advantages:

  • If you rent a portion of the home as a secondary suite, this will cover the utilities, taxes, strata fees, and potentially mortgage costs. This also provides the advantage of increased security while you personally are not using the property.
  • It is great to have company, but at some point it is nice for everybody to have their own space. Designing your home at Galena Shores with a secondary suite that has a separate kitchen, laundry, etc. for your guests, is a smart idea. You might rent the secondary suite now, but in the future, you have the flexibility to accommodate everybody and still give them their own space.
  • Sometimes you want to say to guests, just go use the lake, be our guests. However, what you are really saying is look, use the place but PLEASE stay out of my personal stuff. Including the concepts of a secondary suite (lock-off) in the house design accomplishes this goal nicely. You simply give them access to the lock-off but your private area remains sacrosanct.

You can have a lock-off within your main house or you could have that secondary suite in an accessory building. Since waterfront properties have a large need for "toy storage", it is common for people to build a separate garage and to put a secondary suite above the garage. Since the lots at Galena Shores are very large (.5 - 1 acre/.2 - .4 Ha) an attached and a detached garage are easily accommodated.


This is big snow country. Peaked roof dormers placed close together that cause snow to be wedged between the two proximate dormers are a really bad idea in this part of the world. The weight and force of the snow will literally rip the dormer off the roof. Shed roofed dormers are not a problem. The snow load on the waterfront homes will be less than on the view properties at Galena Shores. The reason is that lake does not freeze. As a result the snow does not stay close to the water. However, away from the water at Galena Shores, in a typical year, you will get 4' - 8' (1.2 - 2.5 meters) of snow. A big snow year (e.g. 2011) will be 8' - 15' (2.5 - 4.4 meters).


We advise that you put a roof over most if not all of your decks. Again, big snow country, and the snow can be quite heavy. This will lower the maintenance issues for the deck considerably. Sun decks without a roof are great, however, you will need to construct them to withstand a large snow load. We also advise at least one outdoor screened area. Nine out of ten days, the bugs are not a problem at Galena Shores. However, on the 10th day, it is nice to have a screened area. Whomsoever tells you that there are no bugs on their lakefront property has had a few too many margaritas. All lake properties benefit from a screened, shaded outdoor area.

These are just a few suggestions.  For full details of the Building Design Guidelines at Galena Shores, click here.  Whatever you decide, we believe that your waterfront or view property at Galena Shores will be where you and your family experience the best times of your lives!