A Port Clements-based sawmill has opened a store in Prince Rupert and is doing a good business selling value-added products like flooring and siding.
"I got tired of Rupert bringing lumber here so I decided to bring some to Rupert," said Abfam Enterprises Ltd. co-owner Jim Abbott. "There's been a lot of interest."
The new Abfam Cedar store, which had its grand opening May 15, is located at 943 Chamberlain Avenue, near the bowling alley. Mr. Abbott said that although the Rupert economy is weak, business has been surprisingly good. Fifty customers visited the store the first day.
The store sells 30 products, most of which are not available anywhere else in Prince Rupert or the surrounding area.
"There isn't anybody in the northwest doing what we're doing," Mr. Abbott said. "You can't get kiln-dried products in Rupert in anything but dimension lumber."
The expansion to Rupert comes a year after Abfam installed a dry kiln and a planer that allows the company to cut wood to almost any specification. The company mills local pine, spruce, hemlock and red cedar.
"If we haven't got it there, we'll make it," Mr. Abbott said.
For example, Abfam recently manufactured special-order siding for the Tlell River House renovation, with a rounded "log profile" on one side.
Abfam products are also available at the company's sawmill in the Port Clements industrial park.