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Princeton to purchase downtown FortisBC building for $475K

Town staff has grown and more office space is needed
This building, owned by FortisBC, is relatively new and in good condition, says town staff. (Spotlight photo) The building, owned by Fortis, is relatively new and in good condition, says town staff. Spotlight photo

The Town of Princeton plans to purchase the FortisBC building on Bridge Street to accommodate increasing staff needs.

The move will cost $475,000.

“For the past few years the staff have been a bit cramped in the existing town office building,” said town chief administratie officer Lyle Thomas.

“The new building will allow us to spread out and even improve the service to the community.”

Building and bylaw departments, recreation and Firesmart will move to the new facility, leaving corporate services, finance, administration and infrastructure in the present municipal hall on Vermilion Avenue.

The second storey of town hall also serves as a provincial circuit court house at least once a month.

In addition to council chambers being used as a courtroom, that requires private space for sheriffs, lawyers, and sometimes prisoners.

In recent years the town has added a full time senior building official, which replaced a two-day per week contract service from the regional district, and a second building official, level one. “This is in response to growth and the flood recovery work,” said Thomas

A development coordinator was also added to meet the needs of growth and increased development applications, and a clerk was brought on board to support the finance department.

As well, a Firesmart coordinator was hired, with provincial government grant funds.

“All these positions need workspace,” Thomas added.

“Examples of growing pains include one person working in the basement, three people sharing one office, and one person working from a temporary desk in a corner.”

The new building requires few upgrades.

“The only renovations needed are interior walls to create new offices. The new building is fairly new and very structurally sound.”

Related: Princeton gets $750k in funding to revitalize downtown core

Related: Vacant and rundown storefronts create headaches for Princeton

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Andrea DeMeer

About the Author: Andrea DeMeer

Andrea is the publisher of the Similkameen Spotlight.
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