Welcome to the future Community Radio station for Gabriola
- Highest existing tower on island currently servicing their cellular
traffic. Talked to Don Kennett they will want money (big money and
must be serviced by Telus) if they let us on at all. Their offer of free
rent vanished as fast as you can say "customer service".
Held a conference call with Don, Fire Chief Jackson and myself
Oct 6th, 2003. He
did say something about getting the landlord ( Mr Coats) to allow them
to subdivide. They can't, with out his permission. Access to site
by landlord, his property surrounds the site. He owns the only road to
Coats Road site
- Tower existing. owned by Zulu of Cercomm Electronics. Fire and 911
use this site. His original offer still stands (nothing in writing
free rent, we pay for power and leasehold improvements. Located near
a house, access is by their driveway. Agreements are in place to
Mt Benson -
Tower existing. owned by Zulu of Cercomm Electronics. This off island
site is located behind Nanaimo and offers a panoramic view of Gabriola.
His original offer still stands (nothing in writing yet) for free rent
we pay for power and leasehold improvements. Located on the top of Mt
Benson impossible to reach in event of an emergency, no way to park a
van there. Good view of island. Fire chief has agreed to support this
location if it gives complete coverage of the island.
- No tower existing. Serviced by a new
this location features the highest point on the island 160m. Power, cable,
telephone are all existing. Water may be a problem, but its a problem
on the whole island anyway. Area has some timbre standing at ~120 feet.
A property owner at the end of Chernoff Drive has been contacted
and will be approached for an agreement. Site pictures available.
Larrivee site (935
Clarendon Road) - No tower. Located at the top of the hill in Leboeuf
Bay at the north end of the island. Owner is supportive of a radio facility
at her location. Fire chief regularly calls her to see if she sees any
smoke on the island. Power, cable, telephone are all existing. Serviced
area with passable driveway. Area has standing timbre at ~ 90 feet
Fire Hall #1 (760
North Road) - Tower existing. Had a nice climb up today the view shows
the Telus Tower (between the trees 10 feet down from the top) to the south
east and Mt Benson to the west. No way to see Chernoff Drive as the tree
tops do look all the same. Suitable for a microwave transmission site
I thought we may want to run the STL on land lines from the Artworks to
the Fire Hall then microwave to the tx site.
Comments from the
national listserve have come in on this issue. Station managers state:
"Working with any of the big guys sucks - they're "damn bastards!" landlords. I'd take the better antenna and give it a good ol' install so there will be few/none emergencies. Then it's just about regular checks on the good travel days. I remember fondly when we owned our own tower. Control, no fees, flexibility for future growth needs. Be careful what you get the station into. Set things up now to be lowest maintenance, clearest title, longest lifespan. Err on the side of caution." - Tristis Ward, CHSR Station Manager
The location of the
studio should involve informed discussion by various segments of the community.
This is a major undertaking for this island and will impact on the community.
Having said that Kathy, Dick and I discussed the options that seem reasonable
to start with and determined the following:
is in low supply on Gabriola. Market rates range from $.80 to 1.00 per
square foot per month. New construction is ongoing and the outlook suggests
something will be available if we need it.
Mall - 575 North Road. The owner is planning an expansion soon. This
would be the most expensive, also the most desirable because of centrality,
accessibility, visibility, access to good coffee close by, walking to
ferry, good parking, Library located here. The Artworks is located at
the mall and a sublet could be a possibility, however, it would be at
market rate and lease hold improvement would be ours to bear. The highest
I could go in the ArtWorks very near the roof did not give any view of
any tx towers or Mt Benson. The trees surrounding the mall roof are at
least 30 - 50 feet higher.
Two other malls exist
across North Road from the Folklife Village. I know both owners they
nice and would be competitive on price if they have anything available
when we start looking, right now they don't. A few sparse commercial
exist in the "downtown" area. The pet feed store just sold
(winter 2003) for $388,000, 4,500 sq. ft. store, suite, office space,
147 x 145 foot lot
that works out to $86 bucks per square foot. The gas station was just
purchased by the Nanaimo Co-op and the 1,500 square feet garage area
available, they will build to suit. Wine making shop, lumber yard, medical
clinic, deli, fish monger, post office all in the two block area. The
ferry to Nanaimo is a comfortable 12 minute walk from here.
Local zoning permits
us at any location (except public park or ecological reserves) we are
thinking we could build or move into a house located near by the Folk
Life Village i.e. Lockinvar, The Museum (South Road and Lockinvar), however
as Kathy points out, the museum is having trouble keeping and getting
volunteers as it is located away from the village centre. It seems people
volunteer to obtain some social contact, so we do not want to be far from
the action, such as "the action" is on an island of 3,000 people.
We have a timbre
framing school on the island. They are always looking for school projects
we could, with donated timbre, build a studio, using volunteer labour
for ~ $50 per square foot. Our studio options for the future include:
1. Rented trailer on rented land behind the fire hall - least desirable, but good short term solution, cost effective.
2. Custom built timbre frame studio and offices on land we own near the village centre - expensive, but very suitable for volunteers.
3. We build timbre frame studio on rented residential land near village centre - do able but the issue of investing all the resources into something we can't sell or use as a mortgage seems not desirable. Having said that, a studio that you can't sell or mortgage makes sense from a stability argument. I guess down the road we could buy the lot on a lease to own thing.
4. Rent commercial space near village centre.
5. Rent residential suit near village centre. Basement radio?
6. Converted Volkswagen or Toyota van at tx site. cheap but not very stable, theft issues, dampness in winter, no CD library space.
Ken Zakreski, developer