Belgrade boasts residential growth


BELGRADE, Mont. - There are 13 homes under construction right now in Belgrade.

Folks with the city tell us after a five-year lull, Belgrade has seen a real upswing in residential development. They say most of it is residential but they mention they're building a school and a motel is also under construction.

The city planner tells us those 13 new homes are largely split between two subdivisions -- Las Campanas and Meadowlark Ranch.

We stopped at Las Campanas. It's right next to the site of the new Belgrade I-90 interchange.

Builders there tell us it only takes them a couple of months to complete a home, from the time they break ground to when the home owner walks through the door. After they finish this one, they say they have four more to do, plus a duplex.

City planners tell us it's welcome growth that keeps them busy.

"It brings in revenues, it brings in building permit fees, impact fees, which will be beneficial short-term on the budget and long-term with the infrastructure that the impact fees will help pay for so, those are all positives," says Belgrade City Planner Jason Karp.

Karp says it's a balancing act -- more people means more traffic and more demand for services.

"You're either growing or you're dying, it seems and we're used to growing in Belgrade. We just have been. We've gotten so used to it since the early '90s. We've been on a pretty straight trajectory of going up. It's what we do," explains Karp.

He adds that ecologically Belgrade is great for building. It sits on rocks so developers aren't building on precious farmland.

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