Rudy Di Giovanni is developing 248th Street and Dewdney Trunk Road. (Phil Melnychuk/THE NEWS)

Rudy Di Giovanni is developing 248th Street and Dewdney Trunk Road. (Phil Melnychuk/THE NEWS)

Old high-school haunt soon will be no more

Making way for new rural-urban shopping complex

The old hangout for Garibaldi secondary students has a few more weeks to stand before it and its high-school memories are torn down to allow the second phase of a new commercial development on the corner the corner of 248th Street and Dewdney Trunk Road.

The mall and condo complex will be called Garibaldi Crossing and will have a mix of ground-level stores and second-storey condos.

“We’re trying to cross over, urban meeting rural,” said developer Rudy Di Giovanni. He and his brother Ed have created a unique mix that tries to capture the rural Maple Ridge, Websters Corners style.

Di Giovanni said he developed his own design for the buildings, after mixing architectural elements from buildings that he saw in Florida, Seattle and in Osprey Village, in Pitt Meadows.

He expects phase 1 of the complex to be complete by March, allowing the start of phase two to the north afterwards.

Past students from Garibaldi secondary were sentimental about the impending demolition of the old haunt which served as a refuge from the tense times of high school. At one point or another it was either a pizza place, cafe or convenience store.

“Another piece of Haney history gone … too many great memories at this store … 1960-1975. We grew up in the ‘hood … lol … all our mustang bikes parked out front, getting penny candy … sad day,” said David Leverrier on Facebook.

Di Giovanni says the building was built in the 1960s and renovated about three times, judging by the different types of drywall. But there is nothing else unusual about the building, he added.