WRITTEN BY DEBRA LYNN
The building at 1053 Maquinna in Port Alice is undergoing a major transformation, making it almost unrecognizable from its previous incarnation.
The building was formerly part of Forest Grove Apartments that was built in 1966 and then converted into condominiums in 2007. Each building in the complex, except for two that became the Alice Anglers Inn and the Forest Grove Condo Rentals, became its own strata association. The building at 1053 has only seven apartment units but demonstrates that you can really go big by being small.
Renovations were started when it was discovered that the siding was rotting and working its way through to the inner framing. The carports were also rotting and getting ready to fall down. According to strata owner and career builder who took on the project, Tim Peligren, they “caught it just in time.”
Peligren, for whom the Port Alice condo is his “beautiful getaway,” has been working as a builder out of Nanaimo since 1976. The crews working on the Port Alice structure are employed by him on a full-time basis. Friends, family and other owners also provided a helping hand with painting, clean up and additional labour, and by offering their units to house the out-of-town workers.
Another major issue that made renovations pressing was the boiler. A relic that tended to break down often—and usually at the coldest times of the year—was costing them $10,000 a year in propane bills, not to mention the cost of…