Construction Time!

August 16, 2017

To the people of Trinity United Church

On August 3rd, the tender process closed for our new church building.  Tender documents were received at Lorn Mann’s office here in Creston, reviewed by our architect Christine Ross, and the low bidder, Silverado Construction (Cranbrook) was selected by our insurance adjustor.

The low bid from Silverado Construction was $1,441,728; Silverado is committed to subcontracting locally and anticipates 42 weeks of construction to replace our previous building. Silverado is ready to start as soon as the building permit has been received from the town of Creston. The building permit was applied for on July 26th but could not be approved until the application to amalgamate our four building lots into one title was approved. Reverend Paula received that on August 14th, and hand delivered the new land title to the town office to accompany our building permit application.

It has taken us 23 long months to get to this point, and many of us wondered if we would ever get here.  The process has been long and slow.  One of the frustrations has been that because we are rebuilding through our insurance policy, the insurance adjustor has had full control over the timelines and the process, with our role being primarily one of compliance.  With his background in finance, trustee Eric Kutzner led our requirement to provide inventory lists and to substantiate our claim for business interruption payments based on the loss of Trinity Treasure’s revenue.  Once that was achieved, the focus moved to the planning and design of our new building within the constraints of our insurance policy.  We were successful in our request to hire a local architect who worked closely with the chair of Trustees, Arnold deBoon, to navigate that process.

It has also taken 20 months to amalgamate our land titles.  The church buildings were built on four separate lots; three of which were in the name of Trinity United, the fourth was a duplicate title held in the name of the Methodist minister of the congregation at the time of church union.  It took 18 months of research and paper work to transfer that fourth title into Trinity’s name; the BC Conference lawyer assisting us with that process named it as “the most difficult I have seen in 18 years of doing this work”.  Once all four titles were in Trinity’s name, we were then able to apply to have the four titles amalgamated into one; a requirement for receiving a building permit. Rev. Paula has worked closely with the lawyer’s office throughout this process.

Finally, those separate threads have come together, and we are ready to begin construction.

We are eternally grateful for the dedicated people of this congregation who have remained faithful, resilient and strong during this difficult time.  Within our governance model, our trustees have had primary responsibility for oversight of this reconstruction project; the trustees are accountable to Council, and Council chair Linda Price most capably kept us all on task and focused.  Within our governance model, council members are considered the spiritual elders of our congregation, each of whom have kept worship, Christian education, property needs, pastoral care and fellowship focused upon being church together even without a church building, and to whom we are also eternally grateful.

When we realized that the contractors would need access and space within Trinity Treasures to facilitate construction of our new church building, Jan Miller organized the sale and disposition of the contents.  We thank Jan for her leadership, and thank each and every volunteer who offered time and talent to sort, sell, and clear out the stock.  We realize that this was a difficult process, with so much loss having been experienced, emptying the thrift store felt like one more heavy blow. Standing together, and working side by side, we have now emptied the store, and look forward to the time when we can re-open Trinity Treasures.

Throughout the past 23 months, we have endeavoured to keep everyone informed through our weekly announcements which are distributed in printed form at worship each Sunday and sent by email to those on our email distribution list each Friday morning.  If you have not been receiving these updates, please email your contact information to our Administrative Assistant, Veronica and ask to be included in the email list.  As construction evolves, updates will continue to be shared in our weekly announcements.  You can also contact Rev Paula, council chair Linda Price or trustee chair Arnold deBoon directly with questions or comments.  We have had periodic information sessions after worship and will continue to do so in the weeks and months to come.

With gratitude for your support and care for our congregation,

Rev Paula Ashby

Linda Price, Council Chair

Arnold deBoon, Trustee Chair

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