News

Northumberland to come down in a few weeks

Gary McRae removes debris from units at Northumberland in preparation for asbestos removal and the eventual demolition of the buildings along Fraser St. by North Ave. Tuesday morning. - Colleen Flanagan/The News
Gary McRae removes debris from units at Northumberland in preparation for asbestos removal and the eventual demolition of the buildings along Fraser St. by North Ave. Tuesday morning.
— image credit: Colleen Flanagan/The News

The owner of Northumberland Court has begun gutting the notorious Maple Ridge townhouse complex as the clock ticks towards the district’s deadline for demolition.

Council ordered the action in July against the dilapidated Fraser Street property after an inspection found the buildings had been broken into and wiring wrecked.

Vancouver developer Ghalib Rawji has the required permits to tear down the battered buildings and crews started ripping out drywall from the property on Monday.

Rawji expects the complex to be levelled in four to six weeks.

Rawji bought the complex last year, after years of municipal and police frustration at controlling the drug haven.

He later bought the lot immediately to the west, with access to 224th Street, so he could build more apartments, as well as office space.

Rawji is currently working on final drawings for 29 townhouses and a 24-unit apartment building to submit to the district.

He assures neighbours who are concerned the property will languish undeveloped that he won’t walk away from it.

“I know we are the catalyst for change in the neighbourhood,” said Rawji on Monday as he watched workers dismantle the innards of one building.

“So far, everything looks good and viable.”

Rawji is still fighting with a lawsuit launched by the previous majority owner of the townhouse complex, Jagdev ‘Jack’ Athwal.

Athwal filed the lawsuit in January, alleging Rawji’s company, Northumberland Fraser Street Holdings Inc., reneged on conditions agreed to when it lent Athwal more than $300,000 to clear title on the townhouse complex.

In a response to Athwal’s claim filed in New Westminster Supreme Court, Rawji states that it is Athwal who has defaulted on the mortgage, a promissory note and is in breach of the agreement.

He has asked the court to dismiss Athwal’s lawsuit and said it has been “temporarily” settled.

<script src="http://storify.com/mapleridgenews/demolition-looms-for-northumberland.js"></script><noscript><a href="http://storify.com/mapleridgenews/demolition-looms-for-northumberland" target="_blank">View "Demolition looms for Northumberland" on Storify</a></noscript>

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

ICBC blocking record 25,000 drivers for Port Mann toll evasion
 
Renewed interest in Kwantlen Band’s land
 
Fentanyl taking a deadly toll
Legendary skater Toller Cranston dead at 65
 
Hyacks’ Seymour secures scholarship to Ohio University
 
More than $10K run up on stolen debit card
Theft at White Rock liquor store investigated
 
Door-to-door mail in Chilliwack set to end mid-November
 
Locking up their love for New West, and each other

Community Events, January 2015

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Jan 23 edition online now. Browse the archives.