Port Alberni’s city hall has a new, more modern look courtesy of $100,000 worth of cedar panelling donated by the Coulson Group.
“It provides an opportunity to show what we can produce locally in the Alberni Valley with local wood, local effort, local ingenuity. It’s very much a cooperative effort in terms of how much it came together,” said Mayor Mike Ruttan on Monday.
The new cedar panelling cost the city $35,000 for 400 hours of installation and was helped along by the donation of cedar panelling by the Coulson Group.
Cedar cladding for the entrance way support poles was donated by Western Forest Products.
According to director of finance Cathy Rothwell, J Robbins Construction installed the panels; Dolan’s provided sheet metal for the corners and Levelton Consultants provided engineering services.
The panelling has been manufactured at Coulson Forest Products sawmill for the past three years.
“The idea was to take one board, slice it into thin pieces and then glue it to a backing to try to extend that board to seven times the volume. That’s been the idea, to take a species that’s just about gone now and extend it seven times its life,” said CEO Wayne Coulson.
“We’re very proud that this new council stood up and embraced the whole idea of being a cedar leader in the world with our community. It’s great that we’re able to showcase our wood products on these buildings.”
According to Ruttan, it’s only the beginning of city hall renovations.
“This is part of the renewal of city hall and over the next 4-5 years we will renew the things we need to renew, whether it be old carpets or painting walls or what have you.”
Coulson Group CEO Wayne Coulson said that it was a much needed facelift.
“We’re pleased because at the end of the day, in a community, leadership starts at the top. We’ve always seen city hall as being the leader of the community,” said Coulson. “I remember meetings in here where we had broken chairs up in the lobby and then we’d walk into the mayor’s lobby and it would have water stains on the ceiling, the chairs were ripped… so it’s great to see that the new council has picked up on setting the standard and the expectation within the community that all of us on the corporate side are here to follow.”