Nanaimo takes next step to demolish unsafe building

NANAIMO – The city will demolish an unsafe building downtown because no action was taken by the owner.

The city will demolish an unsafe building downtown because no action was taken by the owner.

Under a remedial action order issued by city council June 10, the owner of the old Bay Theatre at 91 Chapel St., which has suffered at least two major roof collapses since early May, had until Thursday to either make the building structurally sound and safe or demolish the building before the city stepped in to do the work.

In early June, an engineering study deemed the building unsafe – due to the roof collapse, the study determined the walls are in danger of falling onto Chapel and Skinner streets – and to protect the public, the city has set up barricades around the building and closed a portion of Skinner Street and a section of sidewalk and adjacent parkade on Chapel Street.

A report that went before council last week recommended that if the city is required to take action, the safety issue should be addressed by removing the building because staff believe it is not feasible to stabilize the remaining structure.

Dale Lindsay, the city’s building inspections manager, said the building’s owner, Langley-based Loft Ministries, has not taken any action and on Monday (July 22), council will pick a contractor to proceed with demolition work.

“The 30 days passed without them doing anything on the property,” he said.

The tender for demolition, issued last month, closed Friday and the city received four bids, ranging in price from $181,111 from Don Saywell Developments Ltd. to $577,500 from Stone Pacific Contracting Ltd. These tender bid results still must be verified by city staff.

In the tender, the city asked that certain parts of the demolition be completed by Aug. 2, Lindsay said.

“Our priority is to open Skinner Street as soon as possible,” he said.

The cost of the demolition will be put on the taxes of the site if the owner does not pay the bill and if the taxes are not paid, eventually the property would go to tax sale.

Loft Ministries bought the building in 2007 with the intention of using it as a church, but according to a city report, it sat mostly unused since that time.

Neglect, mould and mildew were cited as reasons for the structural decay.

Calls to Loft Ministries for comment on the building’s state of repair went unreturned by deadline.

Just Posted

Opposition to 388 Machleary proposal over-extends public hearing

Nanaimo residents 10-1 against development plan in Old City Quarter, public hearing to be continued

Nanaimo beekeepers take down nest of giant hornets

One nest eradicated at Robins Park, but there are still Asian giant hornets around

Nanaimo athletes earn gold, silver, bronze at 55-Plus B.C. Games

Huge contingent of local participants competed in largest-ever 55-Plus B.C. Games in Kelowna

Beefs & Bouquets, Sept. 19

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail

Nanaimo Art Gallery exhibit explores German faux First Nations subculture

Artist Krista Belle Stewart shows photos, videos and items from east German ‘Indianers’

VIDEO: Trudeau asks Canada to look to current, not past, actions on race

Liberal leader says he never spoke about the racist photo because he was embarrassed

Horvat paces Canucks to 6-1 pre-season win over Oilers

Vancouver improves to 3-1 in NHL exhibition action

Legislature gifts, clothing, travel need better control, B.C. auditor says

Audit follows suspensions of managers by Speaker Darryl Plecas

‘Unacceptable’: What politicians have to say about Trudeau in blackface

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi: ‘When I saw that picture last night, certainly it was a sucker-punch’

‘He’s trying to kill me’: Victoria police commandeer boats to reach screaming woman

No charges laid and civilians to be awarded honours after incident on Gorge Waterway

Island contestant competes on Great Canadian Baking Show

Andrea Nauta auditioned for the show before but was lucky second time around

VIDEO: B.C. man accused of assaulting sex worker loses temper in interrogation

Defence lawyer says statements made by accused Curtis Sagmoen should be deemed inadmissible

John Horgan promises action after fatal mid-Island bus crash

Premier cites students, local Indigneous community as reason to repair the road

Most Read