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REPORTING · 22nd May 2013
Walter McFarlane
NEW DEVELOPMENT LOOKS AT KITIMAT

Kitimat City Council saw a presentation from Stuart Ramsey of Bryton Group on the development of #28, highway 37. He introduced himself and stated he has been working on this project with the District of Kitimat for the last 7 months. He introduced his project as: The Crossroads.

“Our development strategically combines full service hospitality with value and contemporary commercial opportunities,” said Ramsey. “Like many developers, we have been scouring the region looking for great opportunities.”

He expressed the Crossroads will be a ‘vibrant hospitality destination.’ It will include a full service hotel, 150 guest rooms and 150 long term stay units. It will accommodate business travelers and tourists. It will include meeting rooms, full service restaurant and a lounge, which will provide space for training, special events and catering.

They are looking at building on the land on the highway between Kitimat Village Road and the Chamber of Commerse.

“The complex will additionally incorporate modern landscaped retail shopping extremis, including anchored grocery store and other much needed amenities which will further service the area. The architecture will set the stage for the new contemporary Kitimat with the intent that the structures will harmonize with the sites natural surroundings. The materials, green building strategies root in this nature, while the contemporary design reflect the bold new direction of Kitimat” said Ramsey.

He estimated there was 80-100 thousand feet of retail including a gas station. He broke down how they envisioned the site using the slide and showed Council what the project could look like. He expressed the hotel was originally supposed to be 100 rooms, but then the community gave them feedback which said the community is in need of more than a basic hotel, as there are no meeting spaces and facilities, pointing out Kitimat loses out on opportunities by not being able to host conferences.

Ramsey stated there would be over 125 employees in the Hotel and over 100 jobs employed in the commercial area, and these jobs were well needed in the community. He asked Council if there were any questions about the vision he shared.

Mayor Joanne Monaghan said it was a very interesting vision. Councillor Mary Murphy asked what extended stay units were. She was told it was for people who rented a room for a week to a month. These suites had kitchenettes and were built like condos.

Monaghan asked when he was starting. Ramsey expressed he loved that approach: “We’ve been working quite diligent with administration to date and we’re still working over some servicing aspects to the site. While it is a fantastic site, there are some infrastructure issues which we are finding challenging but we’ve been working really diligently fixing it. We’d love to see this start this year.”

Ramsey expressed the vision was going to change and evolve as the project progressed. There would be some re-zoning applications as the project progressed. He added he looks forward to the start date.

There were no further questions so Ramsey sat down and the meeting progressed.
Great project, wrong layout
Comment by S on 2nd June 2013
Has anyone ever seen what strip malls look like in Vancouver or any developed area? The structure is never directly next to the road/highway. Instead, it's on the other side of the parking lot. The last thing Kitimat needs upon entrance is a wall of a strip mall's backside (cargo/unsightly/etc). They should build the strip mall where the "retail" structure is, opposite of that parkade. Also, what kind of grocery store is that long and thin?
And while someone's mentioned the old hospital land, it should be the location of a new city hall/museum on the corner of Lahakas and Haisla. Imagine a giant glass "teepee" like structure that housed both, like a futuristic nod to Kitimat's heritage. Also, there is room for another hotel complex there as well.
none of my business, but
Comment by Bryan on 27th May 2013
I worked in Kitimat and had relatives in town for years but have little connection now. Having said that, I think this is a bad idea. City Center has struggled for years and needs a major overhaul and we won't even mention Nechako. Spreading the retail base will only harm what is already there. It has been proven in countless BC towns. Concentrate on what you have until its full and vibrant.
Though that is an excellent and logical spot for a gas bar, convenience store, maybe hotel & restaurant.
And be careful not to overbuild, as that'll just cause more issues when the construction boom ends.
location location
Comment by outdoorsman on 25th May 2013
ya location um this is not the spot for this 1 there is no way i would want this in my back yard as its close to houses you think the camp is in a bad spot how about this in your back yard 2 there is a better spot for this try mountian view sqaure well thats if you can get it pass the one who seems to think she owns this town Qwen the town planer who when asked about this area has saus its NOT avaliable 3 the area is light industrial as far as i know whit a log yard ,storage area,bc hydro, and there is no way that area is big enough tes im for change but theres a better place for this and being on the other side of town isnt it make it part of the downtown core yes it may get some traffic as you come into town but i think it would be better in the heart of kitimat
Finally and long overdue !
Comment by CEM on 24th May 2013
I hope this new endeavavour takes advantage of the beautiful scenery of Douglas Channel. There isn't a restaurant in downtown Kitimat where one can sit and view the mountains and the channel. Too bad something couldn't be built on the old hospital grounds, perhaps a Senior's Residence. Sure doesn't do anything for the town, that old pink wall. The least that could be done by Northern Health or whoever owns this land, is to have it painted green so we can't see it.
Build it!!
Comment by Wolverine #2 on 23rd May 2013
This is a great idea! In a great location. Hotel with restaurant, and retail. What's not to like? Nechako needs something like this. And this development will bring more jobs to Kitimat than Enbridge. Hope council doesn't mess this up...