We are in the midst of a pandemic that has taken its toll on the health of thousands of Canadians and on the economy from coast to coast to coast.
The economic impact has been staggering, which is why it is remarkable to see cranes dotting the Kamloops skyline, while the city remains on pace to set a building-permit record for the fourth consecutive year.
Pandemic be damned — the hammers and nails and blueprints are as active today as they were before the novel coronavirus crossed international boundaries.
Many are waiting for this bubble to burst, but it does not appear that will happen any time soon. The people behind The Hive office park project downtown are not only carrying on, but the first building will be larger than originally planned.
And news this week of Kelson Group’s eye-popping $140-million vision for redeveloping the Nicola/Battle area between Fourth and Fifth avenues should serve as a confidence boost for others on the fence as they decide whether to proceed with development plans in the city.
When times are tough, governments tend to spend their way to better days, and that philosophy seems to have been embraced by the private sector in Kamloops.
Perhaps the thought is this crisis will end at some point, so why not try to accelerate its demise from one sector it is attacking?
Locally, at least, it seems to be working, based on the buzz of activity throughout the city and on a recent KTW online Question of the Week, in which the overwhelming majority of respondents indicated they have not yet been impacted, employment-wise, by the pandemic’s effects.
Of course, the situation can change on a dime, but seeing the landscape six months into this nightmare gives us reason to have confidence in what the future will bring to Kamloops.