The proposed business park in Bay Roberts that has been on the drawing board for several years appears one step closer to construction this week.
This comes following a meeting between Pennecon Limited senior vice-president Ed Murphy and senior town officials on July 9 at the council offices in Bay Roberts.
In that meeting, Murphy detailed some of the plans the international real estate company has for the 60-acres of town land situated off L.T. Stick Drive, near Veterans Memorial Highway.
These plans include a conceptual plan for the park, having worked with an engineering firm on some aspects, and going as far as to hire a consulting firm that will approach clients in hopes of attracting tenants.
The plan features 15 building lots of various sizes with entrance from L.T. Stick Drive, which would run parallel to the park.
“They laid out exactly what they’ve done,” said Bay Roberts Mayor Philip Wood. “I think they’ve put a substantial amount of money into it.”
Although things seem to progressing between the town and Pennecon, there is still no deal in place between the two parties. That is contingent on Pennecon being able to attract an anchor tenant that will help bring other tenants on board. Wood and chief administrative officer Nigel Black could not offer insight into who that might be.
“They won’t sign a deal, and we won’t sign a deal, until they have at least one anchor tenant in place,” said Black.
One thing that may catch the eye of tenants is the new Tim Hortons, opening just a short distance from the entrance to the proposed park.
“Everybody loves Tim Hortons,” said Black.
Long time coming
The business park and Bay Roberts have a long relationship. The idea first popped up a decade ago and has passed through three mayors – Wood, Wilbur Sparkes and Glenn Littlejohn.
Loblaw Properties Ltd., which operates the Dominion store on Conception Bay Highway, had originally signed a letter of intent on May 14, 2012.
However, that deal fell apart in July 2013.
“We’ve had some ups and downs, needless to say,” said Wood.
But, the news brought to them by Pennecon has municipal leaders excited for the future as the company accelerates its plans.
“The bottom line is Bay Roberts is open for business and councillors … are very aggressive in promoting the town,” said Wood.