Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 14/11/2013 (1198 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The only half-off sale at Fedoruk's Used Cars & Trucks involves the size of the Headingley car dealership.
That's because the province expropriated 50 per cent of the dealership's land for a roadway expansion.
'This has been a black cloud hanging over our heads'
Kyle Critchley, general manager of Fedoruk's Used Cars & Trucks, a mainstay to the west of Winnipeg for 43 years, said a number of possible relocation options weren't feasible due to their cost and less-than-desirable locations so they're going to remain at 4621 Portage Ave.
And to let their customers know, they've erected a sign: "We're not going anywhere." (He is quick to add the sign is purely informational and contains no subtle messages for the province.)
The expropriation is related to the Trans-Canada Highway in Headingley and the land will be used for a service road and highway expansion. It ties into the service road constructed as part of the John Blumberg Golf Course intersection improvements, which were built on the east side of Fedoruk's.
A spokesman for the province said work started two months ago and will continue through next summer, with an anticipated completion date in November. The land was needed to create an 11-metre-wide median separation between eastbound and westbound traffic. Both the median and the service road were designed to enhance safety along the highway, the spokesman said.
But they're not doing anything to enhance Fedoruk's sales. Critchley said the ordeal started about 10 years ago. The business used to sit on about 0.8 hectares of land, but when all is said and done, they'll be down to 0.4.
"This has been a black cloud hanging over our heads," he said. "The province barely informs us of anything. We just got a letter in the mail, 'here's an offer for your land.' "
Of course, expropriation doesn't happen without some money changing hands, but Critchley said the $60,000 he was offered by the province is about one-fifth of what he figured the land was worth.
"We've been dealing with a lawyer and the province for years. The compensation just doesn't allow for us to pick up and move to a similar location. We have to fight for what we can get and try and survive at half of our size," he said.
The first option was buying some undeveloped farmland less than one kilometres away, but Critchley said constructing a new building -- $2 million was the estimate -- was too expensive. Option B was to find an existing building and location but nothing that fit his needs was available. Option C was to stay on its longtime home, adapt to the smaller footprint and try to get a fair payout from the province.
"We're equating losing half of our land to losing half of the business. Our main display area used to be asphalt with gravel behind it. Now we're going to have no asphalt and only gravel. It's terrible for us. I wish we still had (0.8 hectares). We have to maintain a display of 100 vehicles. It's very tight," he said.
Fedoruk's has been in Critchley's family since 1982. It has 10 employees and sells about 50 vehicles per month.