The former Owner of Dunvegan Gardens is speaking up after their old location found its new owner.
Last week, Wood Buffalo council voted unanimously to allow the Tabernacle of Praise Church to take over the property.
This is replacing their old building in Waterways which was destroyed during the Horse River Wildfire.
“I’m happy to actually see that it’s being used for at least a group rather than turned into residential lots,” said Brad Friesen, Dunvegan Owner.
Multiple residents were very critical of Dunvegan’s time in Draper. This included complaints about the amount of noise and traffic.
Friesen doesn’t believe the Church will have any problems in the community.
“Anywhere you go you’re going to have a little bit of traffic, so definitely no issue on the traffic for myself.”
The Church plans on using existing facilities already on the property.
In total, they’ll have more than 22 acres of land than they did in Waterways.
“I do hope going forward that there is some agriculturally protected land down there,” added Friesen.
He has no plans on requesting this to the Church and plans to support any decision they make.
Moving Operations South
Friesen, his family, and some former employees are starting up a business around Calgary.
They officially shut down their local operations during the last summer.
It will no longer be called Dunvegan, however, they will continue to focus on creating another market garden.
Friesen says he’s upset that he can no longer offer this service in Wood Buffalo.
“We held great events for the community but I guess going forward we hope to see Fort McMurray residents coming down and joining us at our new location.”
His family has already moved to Calgary, while he continues to commute between the two communities.
“From a person who was a long-time resident, one day I might be one of those people who are flying in and flying out,” said Friesen.
Their new location in Calgary is set to open their doors on May 1, 2020.