City council instructed staff to review a new development permit for a Tim Hortons restaurant to be built on Central Avenue.
Council’s resolution followed a delegation by franchise owners Paul Stawarz and daughter Nicole MacMillan to the Committee of the Whole Monday, Nov. 9.
Stawarz and family had planned to build a Tim’s in the parking lot at Save-on-Foods, near the intersection of Central Avenue and 5th Street, but MacMillan said the project fell through due to complications with a lease agreement. Stawarz and MacMillan told the committee they now hope to build at the old Chevron station at 1863 Central Ave.
Their family company, JAMM Properties (JAMM), has made an offer on the property, pending the council’s approval of the permit.
JAMM owns eight Tim Horton’s across the Southern Interior, Stawarz told the committee. JAMM owners Stawarz, MacMillan and her siblings live in Penticton.
The City of Grand Forks has heard proposals to build a Tim Hortons since 2016.
“Grand Forks has been on our radar for a few years,” MacMillan said, adding that JAMM owns a franchise in neighbouring Castlegar.
Stawarz and MacMillan told the committee their family business values small-town communities like Grand Forks.
“We’re not just coming in and building a big store for some big corporation,” Stawarz said.
Mayor Brian Taylor said building a Tim Horton’s at the new proposed location would better accommodate city traffic.
Councillor Chris Moslin congratulated the father-daughter duo but raised concerns about the environmental impacts that might arise from building on a former gas station.
Stawarz replied with, “everything we’ve done on-site so far has shown that it has a clean bill of health.”
He said JAMM would continue with environmental checkups to make sure the property was safe to build on.
MacMillan said her family hopes to hire between 20 and 30 Grand Forks employees to run the franchise. If the permit is approved, MacMillan said that JAMM would break ground at 1863 Central Ave. next spring.
She said she hoped to be “pouring coffee” by next fall.