Kingma Brothers sell all Harrison properties

"We were not made to feel welcome in Harrison" says co-owner Peter Kingma

Kingma Bros. Developments Ltd. have sold all their properties in Harrison Hot Springs.

The sales were finalized last week. Peter Kingma, who co-owns with his brother Sid, says while the staff and current Council were great to work with, “We were not made to feel welcome in Harrison.”

“There’s been a lot of good things about working in Harrison,” Kingma said in a phone interview Monday. “Whenever we built there, the market was good. That’s probably one of the most neglected markets in the Fraser Valley.”

He says developers that go to Harrison will make money, but “will have to put up with a rather unwelcoming population.”

People in Harrison would spread “pure speculation,” without calling the Kingma Brothers first to find out what the facts are or to get more information.

“It got personal. They don’t even know me,” says Kingma.

He adds there has been supportive residents too and he has heard from several people who are sorry to see the company go.

Kingma Bros Developments Ltd., based in Abbotsford, have bought and sold properties in Harrison for years as well as built several projects including Harrisburg and lots on Miami River Drive. Their name was well-known in the village for projects such as the proposed 26-townhouse development on Hot Springs Road, currently in the stage of  land preparation by the new, local property owners. Kingma estimates about 150 homes were built by his company and other lots have been subdivided or sold through the years.

“We’ve built a lot of houses for a lot of people. It’s been a good community for us to work in,” says Kingma. “It’s been profitable. But my peace of mind is more important to me.”

Before their departure, the Kingma brothers gifted some property to the village, including a stretch of land by Rockwell Drive / Lilloett Ave down to Driftwood Ave., and a two and a half acre property by the kiosk where the Campbell Lake trail begins. They also made a donation of $25,000 for playground construction in Harrison.

Village CAO Ian Crane says the two and a half acre plot is now grouped into the water treatment plant reservoir land. As funds become available, the village may look to upgrade that site with picnic tables and increased parking for the Campbell lake trail.