Old Western Star plant could soon meet the wrecker's ball

The old Western Star Truck plant on Enterprise Way in Kelowna.
Image Credit: Google Street View

KELOWNA - The last vestiges of Western Star Trucks, a manufacturing success story in Kelowna, could soon be meeting the wreckers ball.

Owner of the site on Enterprise Way, 3752 Investments Ltd., has applied for a permit to raze the former Western Star truck and replace it with a Lowes home improvement store and garden centre.

Western Star Trucks began life as a division of White Motor Company in 1967 making semi-trailer tractors. By 1980, White Motor had gone bankrupt but the Western Star brand continued under new ownership, two oil-patch companies from Calgary.

In 1990, Australian businessman Terry Peabody bought Western Star and turned the struggling company around. In 2000, Daimler AG acquired the company but just two years later, moved the entire manufacturing plant to Portland, Oregon, where production continues.

Plans are to raze the old Western Star building, subdivide the site and build the Lowes store on the north end of the site, beside Mill Creek. The southern portion of the site will be sold.

Because of its proximity to Highway 97, the building design must also be approved by Ministry of Transportation.

City council will consider the development permit application at its regular council meeting, 1:30 p.m. on Monday, June 29 at Kelowna City Hall.

To contact the reporter for this story, email John McDonald at jmcdonald@infonews.ca or call 250-808-0143. To contact the editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

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