Creston’s two-grain elevators stand in the centre of the town, historically and visually interesting, but badly in need of repairs.
The two structures have served as the town’s primary landmark for 85 years. Restoration work will begin this summer, the Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) has announced.
Approximately six storeys high, the elevators built in 1935 and 1936 were used to collect and store locally grown grain crops. The white elevator stopped operations in 1971 and the red in 1982. Both have seen little upkeep since.
The plan to restore the towers has been an ongoing process, following an evaluation for historical value in 2017. The CBT, a non-profit charity, purchased the elevators in 2018 to save them for future generations.
Before restoration of the buildings could move forward, removal of old, mouldy grain and droppings from rodents and birds took place. With most of the hazardous material removed and many assessments complete, including – health and safety, historical and structural – work is ready to take place.
Restoration work will focus on the red elevator first due to its better condition.
An architect has been hired and will oversee the project. Construction is to start in early 2021 and finish by the end of that year. Reconstruction includes a new roof, fresh siding, and refurbished windows. Inside there will be structural and safety upgrades.
In fall 2020, residents will get to decide what the refurbished elevator will be used for and the fate of the 1935 elevator, said Senior Manager, Mark Brunton.