Kamloops residents want unfinished Sahali development dealt with

By Chad Klassen
January 25, 2017 - 5:12pm

KAMLOOPS — You've probably seen it driving on the Summit Connector. The second phase of the Mission Hill development has been sitting unfinished for nearly six years.

After many financial roadblocks, the project has remained stagnant with any progress, and Kamloops residents living near what they call an "eyesore" are again bringing attention to it, wanting something done.

"It's a nuisance," says Enrico Leone. "You get up in the morning to this steel building full of pigeons."

Enrico Leone has lived in Sahali near the development since 1969 and wants it either torn down or finished. 

"They should do something," he says. "You can't just leave it there. It's a nightmare, sticking out like a sore thumb."

Leone's neighbour on Fernie, Peter Thornhill, brought the issue back to City Council on Tuesday, tired of seeing the abandoned building every day. 

"When I drive that corridor into town, I see and it looks awful," he says. "We had a small tourist business on the edge of town this summer and dealth with a lot of people from out of country. Everybody said the same thing: 'what a beautiful city you have, expect for that ugly eyesore at the bottom of the hill.'"

But the city, which contacted the company, Brentwood Developments out of Edmonton, after council on Tuesday, says there are plans in place to move ahead with construction sometime this summer. 

"We've been dealing with the development group for a couple years," says director of Development and Engineering Services Marvin Kwiatkowski. "They've been waiting for the market to improve. Of course, the market has been pretty solid in the last year and looks pretty solid going forward this year for multi-family development. So there's full intention to move forward with that project this year."

The city says most of the construction material is still in good shape and usable. The complex would add another 40 units to the Kamloops housing market.  

But for people in the neighbourhood, it's just a relief the eyesore will soon be patched up. 

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