Case Studies, Discovery Bay (Kelowna): Residents move out - CHBC video

Discovery Bay residents move out (video)
Web posted on Tuesday, 18 July 2006
He paid a pretty penny for a deluxe waterfront condo, but tonight Bill Tzetsos is living in a student dorm. That's the story for one of the owners of the 236 units at Kelowna's Discovery Bay. Shoddy engineering has left the builders with a huge reconstruction task... It's left residents scrambling for other accommodation, and it's left unanswered questions about how such a big project could have gone so terribly wrong.

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Case Studies, Discovery Bay (Kelowna): Still no solutions after three years of complaining

Faulty condos will be gutted (KELOWNA)

By J.P. SQUIRE Tuesday, July 18, 2006, 12:01 AM
The 236 condo owners at Discovery Bay learned Monday they may not have structural repairs to their building completed for up to two more years.A representative of the strata council and a senior city manager were the only two people who emerged from a two-hour meeting willing to speak to reporters.Bill Tzetzos, who owns one unit, said owners learned repairs will apparently involve tearing out virtually every piece of drywall on load-bearing walls, installing more studs and re-drywalling.Another assessment will be conducted during the next 10 weeks, he said, but work is not scheduled to begin until January 2007.That is in addition to repairs to inadequate foundations, the first problem with the project to emerge three years ago.Monday’s meeting of all those involved in Discovery Bay was called by Ken Cameron, chief executive officer of the provincial Homeowner Protection Office.He was concerned some of those involved were not living up to the spirit of the provincial legislation, said Tzetzos.Cameron was unavailable after the meeting, but in a letter, he told those involved: “This situation is not in keeping with the intent and purpose of the mandatory home insurance warranty program . . . which is that construction defects should be rectified as quickly as possible, and the risk and the damage to the homeowners as innocent parties should be minimized.”He proposed a meeting to determine if there are ways of expediting repairs and/or mitigating the legitimate concerns of homeowners.“We’ve been asking for a meeting like this, unsuccessfully, for a long time,” said Tzetzos.Owners began complaining of deficiencies to Pointe of View Developments (the developer), the city and National Home Warranty program in August 2003, he noted, adding the cityfinally recognized the problems in October 2005 and the NHW in recent months.Ron Dickinson, the city’s manager of inspection services, responded the city has been involved in looking for solutions for more than a year.“The city has not washed itself of the situation. We don’t have the solutions yet. It’s coming now, when it didn’t appear to be coming months ago,” he said.The latest engineering report, released on June 30, concluded the six-storey building at 1088 Sunset Dr. was not safe to occupy and recommended everyone move out pending repairs.The safest units are apparently the two-storey townhouses at the front and back since they don’t face the same demands on structural integrity. Tzetzos, who paid $301,000 for a one-bedroom unit in the centre, said Monday he hasn’t seen a lot of people move out, but some are leaving every day. Some of the owners of 100 rental units are asking renters to sign a waiver agreeing not to sue if something happens.Those owners expected to collect $1,600 to $2,000 a week during the lucrative summer months to help pay mortgages or as investment revenue. “I can see litigation over that loss of revenue,” said Tzetzos.Owners who live in their units can get $100 a day or $3,000 a month for living expenses from the national program, based on receipts, but those with rental units don’t qualify. At this time of year, the only accommodation that Tzetzos could find is a spartan dormitory room at UBC Okanagan.The 236 units average $400,000 each for a total assessment of almost $100 million.

Case Studies, Discovery Bay (Kelowna): Deceptive marketing: Competition Bureau and National Home Warranty's Blog

July 13, 2006

TO: Competition Bureau Canada

RE: National Home Warranty Programs Ltd.


Deceptive Marketing Practices,

The Competition Act, Part V11.1

Please review the conduct of National Home Warranty.

Given that the concrete foundations, concrete parking garage and the wood-frame residential condominiums known as Discovery Bay at 1088 Sunset Drive, Kelowna, B.C., were found to be structurally unsafe by Professional Engineers and not in compliance with the B.C. Building Code, and further that the City of Kelowna has warned the owners and occupants that the complex is not safe for occupancy, and given further, that National Home Warranty is the warranty provider for Discovery Bay, it is my considered opinion that National Home Warranty's current advertising campaign makes false and misleading representations to the public regarding, inter alia, "builder quality and buyer satisfaction".

Extracts from six of National's ads are attached to this letter. The extracts were taken from National's website on Thursday July 13, 2006. The address for National's website is:

Information about the Discovery Bay design, construction and inspection fiasco can be found at:'s Blog

Dr. James Balderson, PhD QS

Case Studies, Discovery Bay (Kelowna): Pointe of View Developments sold unsafe condos; advertises "second-to-none construction supervision"


Today, more than 18,000 people come home to Pointe of View.

We take pride in being successful in our mission - to provide quality, affordable housing for every lifestyle.

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For Pointe of View Developments, success means getting straight to the point, regardless of the location of its latest operation.

This kind of success is the result of pragmatic, efficient and attractive architectural design with the highest-quality, innovative materials available - a combination that appeals to homeowners across the country.

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Staying on point means Pointe of View staff never let low selling price translate into low %u2013 quality materials that may not stand the test of time to form or function.

Pointe of View's buttoned-down design, purchasing and building practices contribute significantly to cost savings that get passed on to the consumer, as Pointe of View offers low cost and high value in all its endeavours. Add to that tight planning, adherence to scheduling, good trade relations, exacting material selection and second-to-none construction supervision, and homeowners can enjoy a minimum of both expenses and inconvenience.

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See how Pointe of View provides new homeowners - all with diverse needs and different locations - a place to call home.

Copyright © 2004 Pointe of View

Case Studies, Discovery Bay (Kelowna): Strata Council President evacuates his unsafe condominium

Report triggers condo exodus (KELOWNA)

By Shelley NichollStaff ReporterJul 05 2006

Bill Butterworth isn%u2019t taking any chances. As one of the condo own­ers at Discovery Bay, he%u2019s taking the advice of an engineering company that stated the condos are not up to building code and should not be occupied until they are fixed. Butterworth, who is also the strata council president, is one of about 10 unit owners who have already opted to go. He%u2019s expecting more will follow. %u201CWhen I read what the engineer has to say, I%u2019m not qualified to challenge what he says,%u201D Butterworth said. How many will follow him and how long he%u2019ll have to stay out, he doesn%u2019t know yet. More details are expected in the next few weeks, but Butterworth anticipates being out of his unit into next year. In all, there are 232 units in the five-story condominium complex at 1088 Sunset Drive. On Friday, residents were told the results of an engineering report that stated their homes were structurally unsafe. On Tuesday, they heard that if they choose to move out, the National Home Warranty program will cover $100 a day to cover their living-out expenses. The city doesn%u2019t have the authority to to evacuate residents, but is urging them to take the advice to move out. Butterworth said it has been frustrating and residents are making up their own minds what to do. %u201CThere%u2019s all kinds of emotions,%u201D he said. %u201CDifferent peo­ple handle it in different ways. Some ignore it. Others are angry and there%u2019s everything in between.%u201D It%u2019s a tricky situation for the unit owners who use the waterfront condos for rentals. More than 100 of the units are used for rentals. The summer months are especially lucrative and the home warranty program does not cover any loss of rental income, that would be up to the individual owners%u2019 private insurance. As well, the news about the building doesn%u2019t help future rentals. The news wasn%u2019t entirely unexpected. Last summer, concerns about the underground parking lot resulted in the lot being closed off and an engineering firm called in to assess the issue. Discovery Bay developer Pointe of View Developments hired Krahn Engineering, which discovered the structural design of the parking lot wasn%u2019t able to handle the expected load. It had been signed off by an engineer as meeting the requirements at the time. Once the residents heard that the same engineer, Sven Hegge, had signed off on the wood structure as well as the concrete work, they decided the whole building should be checked, said Butterworth. As a result, David C. Woodall Structural Engineering was called in to look at the residential part of the building. That company%u2019s report wasn%u2019t good news, either. %u201CThe Woodall report found that some of the load-bearing walls of the residential structure also did not meet B.C. Building Code requirements,%u201D stated a Pointe of View press release from president Brian Stoddard. %u201CPointe of View has asked Woodall to determine short-term and long-term remediation to bring the development in line with B.C. Building Code requirements.%u201D Essentially, the load-bearing walls do not meet the standards for wind and earthquake resistance. The five-sto­rey condos were built in 2000, which means the developer is still eligible under the New Home Warranty program for compensation for the structural repairs. Ray Windsor, vice-president external relations for National Home Warranty, said the program %u201Ccovers repairs of defects to the building and units.%u201D As for who is to blame for the problems, that falls onto the lap of the original engineer on the project who is long gone now. Windsor explained that in the building process of large projects, the expertise of engineers is used to determine if the building meets code requirements, rather than a local building inspector. Despite the problems with Hegge, Windsor said the process is still sound. %u201CThis is an unusual event,%u201D he said. %u201CWe rely on professionals as the experts.%u201D That puts the City of Kel­owna out of litigation%u2019s way. City manager Ron Mat­tiussi said the building inspection department has been watching the issue carefully but is not liable for any damage because of the engineer%u2019s seal.
# posted by Don Quixote @ 7/07/2006 0 comments

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