Owner Keith Starling shows off some specialty milled lumber at his Westside Road operation

Take to Heart earns nod at Wood WORKS! BC Wood Design Awards

BUSINESS BEAT: Revelstoke mill earns B.C. nod for fab local home; Chamber addresses taxation issue; new restaurant; Poppi's anniversary

Business Beat, By Aaron Orlando

Revelstoke specialty sawmill Take to Heart was honoured with a special mention at the 2013 Wood WORKS! BC Wood Design Awards earlier this month. Owner Keith Starling noted they were up against serious competition – many of the recipients were honoured for large public or private buildings.

Starling’s Westside Road mill won for their work building the Pallas Residence in Revelstoke. The panel cited Take to Heart and the home, “as an exemplary example of a truly green building. Constructed of solid-wood-wall panels and assembled with wood screws, the result is a highly-efficient building with little impact to the environment.”

I had the privilege of touring the mill last week where I learned about the process to create the post and beam timber-framed home.

Starling explained the unique solid-wood walls are a sandwich of three cross-laminated layers of Douglas fir held together using wooden screws that go most of the way through the wall. The result is an interior wall with a tongue and groove look without any visible fasteners. On the outside, the wall is finished with a special wood-based insulation, paper wrap and shingles, allowing enhanced breathe-ability for the building.

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PHOTO: The Pallas Residence showcased the Take to Heart sawmill’s unique new all-wood wall panelling. Photo contributed by Take To Heart

The resulting toxin-free frame creates a breathable, energy efficient home.

Much of the home was pre-fabricated at Take to Heart, drastically cutting the construction time and reducing costs. Starling said the home is competitive with traditional stick frames.

Back at the mill, Starling is exploring ways to refine the process and market the product – and he’s received lots of interest since the awards gala in Vancouver. He envisions it as an alternative to log home construction – an industry he’s experienced in; the mill owner started out manually stripping logs for log homes when he was in grade 8.

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PHOTO:  The Pallas Residence in Revelstoke from the south side. Photo contributed by Take To Heart

I’ll share more about Take to Heart in an upcoming series in the Times Review exploring the local forest industry that should start in a few weeks.

Chamber hosts property tax open house

The Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce hosted a property tax open house last week where they gathered feedback and suggestions they’ll send to city council.

Executive Director Judy Goodman said participants created a good discussion about city services and gave their input on the Chamber’s efforts to help shape city taxation policy.

“We want to know how people really feel,” Goodman said. “I think we learned that people really do care. I think people want more information.”

A feedback panel had lots of suggestions. They included:

– ending make-work projects

– eliminating unnecessary bylaw enforcement

– contracting out city services

– staff reductions

– reducing the number of paid consultants

Following the open house, the Chamber held a social at , where Agnes Kowalczuk hosted, serving up free cotton candy martini teasers. Did you know that The Cabin’s cocktails have earned a mention in GQ Magazine? Snowboard superstar Travis Rice gave them an endorsement dating back to his time filming The Art of Flight here in town.

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PHOTO: CHAMBER MIXER From right: The Cabin’s Agnes Kowalckuk earned the business a mention in GQ Magazine for their exceptional cocktails. She’s joined by Revelstoke Chamber of Commerce president and RMR Director of Skier Services Steve Bailey, centre, and Peter Nielsen, general manager of the Sutton Place Hotel.

At the mixer, the chamber board and membership were again focused on the city tax issue. Nathan Weston served on both the city budget focus group and the Chamber of Commerce’s committee looking into the tax issue; their final report should be an interesting read.

Another topic of discussion included a challenge of the city numbers; some feel the way the city is reporting the taxation increase actually underplays the actual tax increases year over year.

The chamber is hosting Katrina LaNoury from BC Assessment at an April 23, 5 p.m. Business After Business event, where she’ll speak about the assessment process and delve into the vacation home

The Last Tee

Powder Springs general manager Emma Kirkland has announced The Last Drop will be operating the restaurant at the Revelstoke Golf Club this season. The restaurant will be named The Last Tee and will be managed by current Last Drop server Sarah Kokerus. Open daily during the golf season from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., the restaurant will partner with the Last Drop, including cross-staffing and cross-buying in order to keep products and hours competitive.

Poppi’s Guest House marks fifth anniversary

In a side conversation at the chamber mixer, Poppi’s Guest House owner Poppi Reiner noted she’d about to mark her fifth anniversary, that critical attrition point that marks small business survival. She’s hosting a private anniversary party on the theme of ‘I’m Still Standing’ very soon. In a way, Reiner’s story parallels business development since the opening of the resort. She’s taken a hit on commercial property value, had a tax assessment scrape with the city, worked hard to develop a niche and even waited tables to supplement her business. The lifestyle migrant (skier) is happy to be on her feet and is looking forward to the future. Congratulations Poppi!

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Do you have a Revelstoke business story you’d like to see covered? Give Aaron a call at 250-837-4667 or email him at editor@revelstoketimesreview.com.

 

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