Williams Lake Slumber Lodge demolition out for tender

After five years of extensions, several fires and RCMP calls the downtown motel could be torn down

Despite an 11th hour attempt by the owner to halt it, Williams Lake city council has approved tendering the demolition and removal of buildings at the Slumber Lodge site.

At its regular meeting Tuesday, April 25, city council voted unanimously for staff to put the work out for tender and report back to council with the bids.

Although he was not on the agenda, Mayor Walt Cobb did allow Slumber Lodge owner John Carhoun to address council in person during the meeting.

“I don’t think it’s a good plan to demolish it,” Carhoun told council. “Right now it is not doing anybody any harm. We are doing work slowly and have spent a considerable amount of money.”

Carhoun said he has the funds to finish the work and requested one more extension, saying he thought council would be happy with the work, and if he did not meet the deadline then they could complain.

Responding Cobb said the city has heard the same story repeatedly from Carhoun during the last five years.

“We will proceed with the process of finding someone to demolish the site,” Cobb said.

Coun. Ivan Bonnell said even though council supported the resolution for the work to go out to tender, it still gives the owner time to meet the requirements of the bylaw enforcement to bring the property into compliance.

“If those actions aren’t undertaken by the time council receives tenders then at that point we will consider the next step that will be taken,” Bonnell added.

In a report to council, senior bylaw officer Brendan Foote said the first remedial action order placed on the Slumber Lodge was in July of 2012.

Since that time there have been a number of fires and RCMP calls for service including for mischief, causing a disturbance, suspicious persons and vehicles and insecure premises.

Foote said based on the environmentally hazardous conditions that have presented at the site, the demolition would have to be done to comply with all B.C. Worksafe and provincial regulations.

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