Work stopped on Okanagan Falls cannabis facility

Sunniva says it has put construction of a massive cannabis facility in Okanagan Falls on hold. Submitted

It looks like an influx of cannabis jobs may not be coming to Okanagan Falls after all.

Cannabis company Sunniva says it has “suspended” all development plans for its Okanagan Falls location.

The business had proposed to eventually build a 759,000-square-foot cannabis production, manufacturing and processing building in the small town.

READ MORE: Could a mega marijuana production facility revive a small Okanagan town?

The project was slated for a long-vacant industrial lot that had previously been the Weyerhaeuser mill site, and proponents said it would bring 240 jobs to the community.

The project’s supporters said those new jobs would help to revitalize the area.

WATCH (June 2018): Extended interview with Sunniva’s founder about the proposed marijuana facility in Okanagan Falls
Click to play video 'Proposed Okanagan Falls marijuana facility' Proposed Okanagan Falls marijuana facility
Proposed Okanagan Falls marijuana facility – Jun 4, 2018

Now, those plans seem to have been at least stalled, if not outright cancelled.

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In a corporate update released this week, Sunniva said it has not only “suspended” the project but also ended its agreement with the construction project’s general contractor and sold off part of the building.

READ MORE: Massive pot production facility proposed near Oliver would be largest in B.C.

Instead, the company said it will “focus efforts on U.S. operations” as it continues to review its strategy in Canada.

The project was not without controversy.

Last June, Okanagan Falls area director Tom Siddon said some residents were concerned about traffic, odour, property values and the project’s potential impact on the water table.

However, the company said in its application to the regional district that it would implement odour control measures, employ 24-7 security, including 300 cameras, and follow a general “no nuisance” clause relating to noise, vibration, smoke, dust, odours, heat and glare.

—With files from Shelby Thom

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