The City of Cranbrook purchased 100 acres of industrial land formerly owned by Tembec in 2018. Photo courtesy City of Cranbrook.

City of Cranbrook proposing sale of former Tembec Lands for $6M

The City of Cranbrook is proposing to sell the former Tembec industrial lands for $6 million.

The proposed sale — to Peak Cranbrook Properties Ltd — includes 100 acres of industrial property and all associated buildings, structures and assets with the land, which the city acquired two years ago.

Brian Fehr is listed as a director with Peak Cranbrook Properties Ltd, which was incorporated this past August and has a registered address in Canal Flats. He is the founder of Peak Renewables, a company that converts wood fibre into industrial wood pellets for use in power plants and international markets.

Fehr is also the chairman of the board for Smartlam, which manufactures Cross Laminated Timber for sustainable green buildings, according to the company website.

He has spent a lifetime in the forestry sector, building up a billion dollar group of companies through BID Group, which pursued innovative concepts such as applying artificial intelligence to manufacturing and transforming maintenance practices.

Fehr was involved in the purchase of the former Canfor facility in Canal Flats, which was transformed from a forestry saw mill into the Columbia Lake Technology Centre. The centre has partnered with PodTech — a company that manufactures specialized and highly efficient data servers — and has a number of other ongoing investment opportunities.

The former Tembec lands in Cranbrook were purchased by the city in 2018 for $3 million, after sitting empty and unused for many years. The property formerly housed a Tembec sawmill operation.

At the time of the city’s purchase, Mayor Lee Pratt touted the move a way to generate economic activity, with plans to subdivide the property and leasing out sections to interested parties in order to generate income in perpetuity.

City will pay $3 million for Tembec land: Mayor

Two years ago, C&C Wood Products leased a section of property, taking over and retrofitting a former Tembec finger-joint plant that remained on site and producing wood trim and siding that created 40 local jobs.

C&C Wood Products was first incorporated in 1977, and became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Callidus Capital Corporation on January 31, 2019.

However, C&C Wood Products, along with Westside Logging Ltd — a wholly-owned subsidiary of C&C Wood Products — filed for bankruptcy on June 2, 2020, with PricewaterhouseCoopers Inc. appointed the trustee of all assets by the BC Supreme Court three days later.

Despite an attempt to restructure and pursuing strategic alternatives, efforts to create a cash-flow positive operation were unsuccessful, according to the bankruptcy filings.

The Cranbrook facility was put on care and maintenance as part of wind-down operations in January, while another facility in Quesnel was shut down in May.

The BC Supreme Court approved the sale of C&C Wood Product assets to Peak Renewables Ltd. in September.

Since the city’s purchase of the former Tembec Lands two years ago, a number of efforts have been underway to get the property ‘investment-ready’ for prospective companies and entrepreneurs.

For example, a trio of contracts were awarded last summer to undertake a site investigation that would produce a plan to address environmental issues on the land, while other contracts involved a transportation network study, as well as a geotechnical and hydrological assessment.

Those three contracts came out to approximately $529,000.

During budget deliberations last year, the city approved a plan to install deep and shallow utilities on the property budgeted at $5.25 million. However, those plans were shelved as a response to mitigating financial impacts stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons. File photo.
MP Morrison calls Keystone XL permit cancellation ‘devastating news’

Kootenay-Columbia MP reacts to the Conservative Party’s removal of a controversial Ontario MP

Interior Health reported 91 new COVID-19 cases in the region Jan. 20, 2021 and three additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
95 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, two deaths

Another member of Vernon’s Noric House has passed

Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP was called to a report of a fight at an Okanagan Landing Halloween party Saturday, Oct. 31, but issued the homeowner a ticket  under the COVID-19 Related Measures Act for having too many people at the party. (Black Press file photo)
Police investigating after woman dragged, run over by truck in Jimsmith area

A woman sustained severe injuries after being allegedly pushed out a truck,… Continue reading

letter
LETTERS: Travel to Kimberley

A second home owner appreciates Mayor’s comments; a resident doesn’t agree

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

Most Read