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City moves forward on Greig Ave development

With roadwork on the 4600-block starting in the summer, permits for new bar and museum moving forward while plans for new hotel still unknown
Much-needed roadwork on Greig Avenue is scheduled to start this summer. (Brittany Gervais photo)

Work on the multi-million dollar transformation of the 4600-block of Greig Avenue will begin this summer with a series of municipal and private sector developments, which include plans for a new bar.

On the street level, reconstruction will see new water, sanitary and storm mains, roadway gravel and paving, new curbs and paved sidewalks with additional landscaping of trees and street lights. The infrastructure improvement project is currently in a tendering process between potential contractors, but once awarded, crews are expected to start construction in mid-June. Replacing the old water main infrastructure and sewer pipes along Greig are the deepest in the city and difficult to reach, but a substantial completion date has been set for September.

The larger portion of the former Co-op property received a certificate of compliance (COC) on May 25, officially clearing the 2.79-acre site for sale. Originally purchased by the city in 2005 for $1 million, the land is currently under an $877,500 sales agreement with Calgary-based Superior Lodging for the development of a hotel. Once a point of contact has been made with the City of Terrace, Superior Lodging will have 30-days to decide whether or not to finalize the purchase of the site.

“To reach this milestone of a point where [the city] can actually sell it is huge for the city, especially at the time at which we are sitting economically. With what we’ve got going on with the Port in Prince Rupert and LNG Canada, that becomes a very lucrative piece of real estate downtown,” said the city’s Communications and Business Development Officer Karisa Petho, adding the city has received a lot of interest in commercial property in Terrace with recent economic developments.

A half-acre of land located on the site’s northeast portion along Kalum Street has also been carved out for a new museum, originally accepted by the Terrace and District Museum Society from the city in 2017. The multi-million dollar project is still very much in the beginning stages, but there is a commitment from the city to the BC Ministry of Environment that environmental works will be completed on the property, according to Petho.

Museum curator Lane McGarrity said the society is currently in the process of conducting a feasibility study and is actively seeking grants and funding opportunities for the construction of the project, which will house the new museum and archive space for stored documents and artifacts.

“We want to make sure that we’ve communicated with the community and all of our members in surrounding areas to get a good idea of what the museum would mean to them, and then from there we can move forward with more of the planning stages,” said McGarrity.

A new bar will also be added to the area. Proposed on the same property as Skeena Liquor Store on the corner of Greig and Atwood, ‘Darcy’s Bar’ received a development permit during the city council meeting on May 28 and started construction earlier this week. It is currently designed for 70 patrons and will give a ‘modern yet historical twist’ to the brewhouse, according to a news release sent by the city. Progressive Ventures Construction is now engaged for the design and build of the development, which is expected to become fully operational by December 2018.

With four different initiatives working together at once, the city said it is hoping the developments will increase pedestrian traffic and extend the Greig Avenue corridor of the downtown, turning what is currently a “very bumpy street with a very large empty lot” into a thriving place of business.

“The city is creating its own grassroots cultural mecca,” said Petho.

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