Coulter Berry officially opens in Fort Langley (with video)

Builder Eric Woodward unveils plaque to recognize supporters of controversy plagued project




“It’s kind of crazy that its actually almost over now,” Eric Woodward said.

The builder was speaking at the official opening of the Coulter Berry building in Fort Langley Saturday morning.

The event comes more than four years after work on the three-storey mixed-use building began.

Woodward said planning for the corner site began in January of 2012, and the project was

first proposed in May of 2012.

The development became mired in controversy, with some Fort Langley residents complaining it was too big.

Construction was halted in 2013 after critics convinced a judge that Township council had violated its own rules by approving a building that was bigger than the maximum size allowed in the heritage conservation area of downtown Fort Langley.

For several months, there was only the fenced-off excavation site, something Woodward described as the “heritage hole.”

The B.C. Court of Appeal later overturned the B.C. Supreme Court decision.

“You know what they say about Fort Langley real estate, it’s impossible to lose money, but I managed to find a way” Woodward told a crowd of about 200 people.

Following the ribbon-cutting, Woodward unveiled a plaque in the breezeway of the building that lists over 1200 names, all of them people whose support helped the project get built, he beleives.

“I don’t know where we would have ended up (without their support)” Woodward said.

Plaque

Fort Langley businessman Robert Mauris looks at the plaque for Coulter Berry supporters.

Dan Ferguson/Langley Times