Owners of a derelict building on Third Avenue have stopped its possible demolition by agreeing to repair it and clean up the debris around the property.
Owner Chris Procter, speaking on behalf of himself and fellow owner Richard Thomas McNeil, told City Council they are willing to spend up to $25,000 to improve the building, which is located at 1001 3rd Avenue West.
“I think it’s easily worth saving. I drive by it three or four times a day and it is rather unsightly place, but with a bit of effort it can be cleaned up,” Procter said, admitting that it’s been one of those situations where he’s told himself he’ll deal with it tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes.
Recently McNeil returned to town after working away for the last five years and Procter said the two are determined to clean the place up.
Mayor Jack Mussallem asked if the building is structurally sound and heard the back portion needs work, but the main structure is in good shape.
“It’s sitting on piles of about two and half feet in diameter so the building is good. When we bought it it was good and we’ve done work to it. It looks like it’s leaning a bit, but it was that way when we purchased it and it hasn’t dropped any further, except at the back,” Procter replied.
Building inspector Allan Scott presented Council with two options – to give an extension to repair the building or order its demolition.
In the end council unanimously passed a motion to grant an extension.
Councillor Nelson Kinney said he preferred repairs being done.
“I’m sure Mr. Procter will do what he said he is going to do because it would be a shame to see another empty hole, which we have enough of now. If it can be fixed up that would be great,” Kinney said.
Councillor Sheila Gordon-Payne agreed and told Procter when Council brings attention to property owners under the nuisance bylaw the goal is see work done so buildings are brought up to code, rather than demolition.
“I think it’s a good outcome for the owner and the City and maybe even Communities in Bloom,” she added, referring to a program in place for 2011 to help beautify Prince Rupert.
After saying she was prepared to support the motion to give the extension, Councillor Kathy Bedard told Procter she would like him to make it a priority to clean up debris around the
“I understand the financing has to be in place to get the other work done, but I think a major step would be to remove the stuff in the back of the building. I think that would help a lot and perhaps remove the staircases that are in disrepair,” Bedard said.