Condo tower may still rise on skyline Friday, 13 July 2012 02:00 Steve MacNaull
GARY NYLANDER/The Daily Courier
The 1.4-acre Lucaya highrise site on Sunset Drive has
finally been sold out of receivership to a B.C. numbered company for the â€˜bargain' price of $3.8 million
A tower could yet rise from the Lucaya site on Sunset Drive. The 1.4 acre property, across the road from Prospera Place, has sat abandoned since 2008, but has now been sold to a mysterious B.C. numbered company for $3.8 million.
"I think there is still a plan to build a condominium tower, maybe a little shorter than the original 21-storey proposal and probably with more units," said realtor Eric Drouin of Coldwell Banker, whcih handled the deal.
"After all, the foundation is already poured."
Construction abruptly stopped in 2008 when financing ran out after a massive concrete pour put in the underground parking, foundation and first floor.
Since then the plot, complete with crane and controversial nesting ospreys a top it, has been an eyesore of overgrown weeds.
Drouin declined to give details of the B.C. numbered company, saying he didn't have permission to release it.
However, there is speculation that while the company is Vancouver-based, it is owned by an Asian group that plans to pre-sell condos to Asian clients meeting immigration
The previous owners were a general partnership from Calgary, called Lucaya Redux Corp., which originally planned a 93-unit luxury tower, with condos priced from $489,000 to $1.9 million.
Apparently, the $2.8-million penthouse at one point was pre-sold to a Calgary businessman.
With the recession arriving shortly after the foundation and underground parking was poured in 2008, work on the project stalled.
Lucaya Redux Corp. was forced into receivership earlier this year, with Kelowna-based Mission Creek Mortgage, a
division of Paradigm Mortgage, as the receiver.
Murray Wills from DTZ Barnicke Kelowna was the listing realtor both for Lucaya Redux and later the receiver.
Lucaya Redux had the property, which it originally paid $5 million for, up for sale for $5.5 million.
There were two interested buyers, but both opportunities fell through.
The receiver listed the site for sale for $4.2 million and eventually took the $3.8 million from the B.C. numbered company in a court-approved sale.
"Personally, I think the buyers got a good deal, especially if they can use the existing infrastructure (underground parking and foundation)," said Wills.
"In the end, a property is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it.
"Because this was a court-ordered sale it is not really an indication of the market heating up or anything. Basically, it's cleaning up a mess and moving forward. The real benefit will be when construction starts again and the economy is positively affected that way with materials being bought and people working."
By the way, the crane on the property can't be moved until the end of November because osprey have built a nest on it.
That matter came before city council recently, with people upset in neighbouring condos that bird poop was falling on their patios and balconies.