‘It’s crazy’: Oliver hotel up in 10 days

Though it will be another couple of months before the hotel is completely ready to go

The 10th and last day of the process to set the hotel up. From here, the job is to make the 66 pre-made units look like a hotel.                                Photo courtesy Mundi Hotels

The 10th and last day of the process to set the hotel up. From here, the job is to make the 66 pre-made units look like a hotel. Photo courtesy Mundi Hotels

From the dirt in the ground to four storeys tall, an Oliver hotel went up in just 10 days.

“That’s the beauty of modular (construction),” Ron Mundi, owner of an 83-suite hotel currently being built in the South Okanagan community.

That 10 days is just part of the eight-or-so months from start to finish expected at the Coast Oliver hotel, with shovels first in the ground in the first week of November 2017. Between then and now, Mundi said crews got to work before the winter freeze to lay the foundation of the hotel.

Meanwhile, the building blocks of the hotel were being built elsewhere. The Coast Oliver is one of a growing number of capital projects being constructed through modular design — effectively, creating 66 pre-made units to piece together, not unlike Lego blocks.

That type of construction saves time and costs, and it negates any weather concerns with the construction, because the hotel isn’t being built from the ground up. Instead of having to transport materials up a floor each time crews are ready to move up, everything is done at ground level in units inside a factory, then transported in by truck and put in place by a crane.

There’s still a couple of months of work to do to finish the product, but for Mayor Ron Hovanes, the progress so far was astounding.

“This is crazy, because I’m just driving by right now and there is a four-storey, 85-room hotel that is built,” Hovanes said in a recent interview. “It’s crazy. They told me three weeks, and I was going ‘yeah right, this is Oliver. We don’t believe anything until we see a shovel in the ground.’”

Between now and completion, the hotel will be prepared for service — mechanical equipment, decorations and more set up in the building to make it look like a hotel. Mundi said he was concerned at first that the compartmentalized construction could make an awkward look for the hotel.

“If you’re walking in the property, you’re not even going to notice this is the modular construction,” he said.

But while the entire project won’t be open likely until at the latest June 23, making a total of eight months, even that time span is significantly faster than the 15 months projected for Mundi’s hotel in Penticton.

That hotel will be built using conventional methods when the building permits are all approved, and will be a total of 95 guest rooms, compared with the 83 in Oliver.

But the Oliver hotel isn’t the only project being built in the area using modular methods — Ken Kunka, building permit manager with the City of Penticton, said a single-family housing project on Penticton Avenue has already been built using modular construction.

As well, an eight-storey mixed-use building on Backstreet Boulevard, a proposed daycare from the YMCA and a B.C. Housing temporary housing project have all been proposed to the city with modular construction in the proposal.

Report a typo or send us your tips, photos and video.

Dustin Godfrey | Reporter

@dustinrgodfrey

Send Dustin an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Interior Health reported two more COVID-19 deaths at Sunnybank Retirement Center in Oliver Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (File photo)
COVID-19 claims two more lives of Sunnybank Retirement Centre residents

Five residents of the Oliver care home have died since the outbreak was first declared

A sign indicating a COVID-19 testing site is displayed inside a parking garage in West Nyack, N.Y., Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. The site was only open to students and staff of Rockland County schools in an effort to test enough people to keep the schools open for in-person learning. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
4 more deaths, 54 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

This brings the total to 66 deaths in the region

Okanagan Clinical Trials is looking at gut bacteria as a way of slowing down the development of Alzheimer’s. (Alzheimer Society of B.C. photo)
Okanagan study looking for volunteers of people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s

The study is looking at how gut bacteria may help slow the disease

Penticton City Hall. (File photo)
City of Penticton seeking grants to fund public washroom improvements

The grant would fund washrooms at Gyro Park and Riverside Park

Oliver Elementary School
Former Oliver PAC treasurer charged with fraud returns to court

Belinda Yorke will be in court to fix a date for trial in February

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

Vernon Fire Rescue Services responded to reports of a structure fire on Valleyview Place Jan. 26, 2021. (Brendan Shykora - Vernon Morning Star)
Fire snuffed in Vernon home

No visible smoke, flames from area of reported structure fire

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Kevin Lee Barrett pleaded guilty to the aggravated assault of his mother Eleanor Holmes on Tuesday, Jan. 26. (File)
West Kelowna man who beat his mom could be sentenced up to 9 years

Kevin Barrett entered a surprise guilty plea to the lesser charge of aggravated assault on Tuesday morning

Vernon now has an approved 13 cannabis shops in town. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Vernon, the ‘Pot capital of B.C.’ greenlights two new stores downtown

Two more shops, within 240 metres, approved, despite neighbouring businesses opposition

11 more cases of COVID-19 have been linked to a cluster on Big White Mountain. Pictured above is TELUS park at Big White Ski Resort, Jan. 26. (Big White Ski Resort)
11 more cases of COVID-19 linked to Big White cluster

This brings the total case count to 225, according to health authorities in a Tuesday update

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

Two fibreglass bees were stolen from Vernon’s Planet Bee Honey Farm Nov. 22, 2020. (Facebook)
Stolen bee returned to Vernon honey farm

Two months after thieves buzzed off with two bee sculptures, public tips led police one of them

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Most Read