We are struggling at this time as are all forest industry companies. We were on reduced work schedules last Summer – early Fall but are back to almost full time hours. The market has picked up a little lately but we are still concerned about the outlook for the next year or two. We employ over 160 people full time. Our market is the Pacific Northwest area of the US and Western Canada.
The energy system has been working well for a long time now. We have had excellent test results that last few times – well below our permit level.
The combination of operator experience and knowing our variation in fuel moisture and operating parameters has made life a lot easier for us all.
Thanks to Jack Stephens from Coastland for providing.
In the News
Milton Street Fire Deemed Suspicious by Nanaimo Fire Rescue Investigators. City memo to the press.
City Log: Project will help house homeless. CMHA announces new project on Wesley Street, city will help fund sprinkler system at the Balmoral.
Port vision includes transportation hub. From the Feb 17 Nanaimo News Bulletin.
What’s Up with Building Developments?
The Condo development planned for 253 Victoria Road is tentatively scheduled to go before council for approval in March.
The Good Samaritan House add-on that was presented at the February SECA meeting has been to the design panel. The builder is now dealing with some building code issues.
Approval for the apartment building planned for 275 Nicol Street was passed a few weeks ago. No word on starting date.
The condo planned for the MGM Restaurant site is on hold for now.
Some interesting info on the planned Robins’ Gardens development. This will, apparently be a fairly cutting-edge development from an environmental standpoint. The developer has committed to saving as many of the trees as possible. The triangle at the end of the parcel will become a “visual amenity space” (hey, I don’t make the terms up, I just report them…J), which basically means the trees will remain, along with a see-through wrought iron fence with interpretation signs. I asked about a park space, but the problem is that the roots of the trees can’t withhold a lot of trampling and since the trees are rare, it makes sense to maintain them.
And if you are green at all, you will love this feature: storm water management (leftover water that would normally go back into the system) will be used to water the trees in the area. (Chris LoS. your grin is lighting up the neighbourhood…J) According to Gary Noble: “considerable money and attention has been paid to this project.”
The units will be 3 storey buildings with a Victorian look. Planned to be built one at a time. Building units were originally planned to be bigger i.e. 1400 SF, but the current demand in our area is for smaller units (starters/singles/retirees), so the unit size is being reduced, but will still be larger than some of the developments that have been presented to us recently.
The 6-plex planned for 13 Haliburton Street, a creative use of space that was presented at our January meeting. Gary relayed that the developer really valued the input from residents. They are working on solutions specifically related to parking: for cars, scooters, and bicycles.
Thanks so MUCH to Gary Noble, the Development Approval Planner for the City of Nanaimo. Both for taking the time to provide updates for us, and for helping developers understand how to “fit into” the South End.
Port Place Mall Update
We get a tremendous number of people searching for information on Port Place mall updates on our site. So your intrepid reporter is doing a little digging and will attempt to provide ongoing updates. We’ll speak mostly to the needs of residents i.e. store openings/closings etc. and a little more generally to what is happening.
According to the city, the development process is still in progress, constantly changing, nothing firm at the moment, ongoing negotiation.
The overall design is still basically what was shown at the open house, the city says. To the best of my knowledge, that is a street running though from Nicol to the Gabriola ferry, with casino, 8 story residence and retail on one side and strictly retail on the other. According to the original plan, the 4 outlets that will be moving to the new development are Thrifty Foods, London Drugs, Medical Arts, and CIBC.
Recent news about a possible transportation hub at the Assembly Lands may impact the overall development. Cruise ship, accessibility, traffic studies are all playing a role in the process.
Stores now closed are ones from the south entrance to around Falconer Books. Some have moved to the north end of the Mall i.e. Charlie Brown’s, clothing, shoe store. (Intrepid reporter forgets pen and paper to write down business names. Decides against applying for a job at the Daily News.)
- The Green Store is now located outside the mall near the casino.
- Canada Post and Liquor Store still operational.
- Coast Capital Insurance is now located in the new Conference Centre building, between Serious Coffee and Iris.
- The food court contains the Japanese stall and the coffee place.
- The Dollar store will remain open until they receive notice to leave.
- Fields is still open
- The inkjet cartridge people have moved to near Canada Post.
No word from remaining retailers on when they will be asked to vacate, they have not received notice from mall owners.
We’ll keep updating, so please, if you have anything to share with the rest of the world, post below.
Social Planning Update
The Balmoral has made an application to CMHC for renovation of the rooms.
The next round of renovations at the Balmoral include new exterior windows, completely new plumbing, new interior tenant suite doors, and some enhanced fire safety renovations.
CMHA has been selected to manage and build the social housing project on Wesley St. They have started looking for and architect and contractor. The RFP (Request for Proposal) will go shortly. The CMHA expects timelines of 9 to 12 months to design and 9 to 12 months to build.
A free dental clinic downtown, above the Rendezvous, is planned to open in about 6 weeks. It will provide emergency pain relief for people who are on income assistance or without any funds to pay. (People who can afford to pay will be directed elsewhere.)
Behind this initiative are Dr Jim Guild, a dentist in Ladysmith, Dr Frances Walsh from the Harewood Dental Clinic in Harewood, and Paul Manhas, the owner of the building who has provided the space for minimum rent. SPAC (Social Planning Action Committee) has provided $35,000 for start-up costs.
The clinic will begin on a drop-in basis a few days/month.
Thanks so much to John Horn, Social Planner for the updates. And to Cris Martens from the CMHA.
New Book Published In South End
Who would have known that 100 years ago Nanaimo was the most rad place in North America! – something you will conclude after reading South End resident and SECA member Larry Gambone’s book, “The Impossibilists.” This little book is both an historical overview of Western Canadian radicalism, and a collection of articles taken from early socialist and labour newspapers. There are some surprises here for sure.
One section is devoted to the writings of labour martyr Ginger Goodwin, out of print since about 1917.
Hot off the press, this 90 pager goes for only $10.00 Copies can be picked up from the author at the next SECA meeting or ordered from email@example.com