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Copeland Lumber may be open to moving from site

Jill Lufrano, Appeal Staff Writer

Copeland Lumber may be open to the idea of making way for new retail development.

The long-established company has been contacted by city officials to discuss moving out of its downtown location.

“People talk about a higher and better use there someday, and ultimately that may occur,” said James Crawford, president of Tum-A-Lum Lumber, Copeland’s parent company based in Oregon. “We don’t want to spend a lot of money on that area that we might move from.”

On Wednesday, Copeland Lumber got a temporary, three-year extension from city planning commissioners on a special permit to store lumber on part of the current site.

Crawford said he would rather not install permanent landscaping, called for by city staff for the permit, in light of the proposed redevelopment plans.

Copeland Lumber, 906 S. Stewart St., sits on property that has been identified by business developers as prime for future development of retail or possibly a movie theater complex.

Joe McCarthy, the city’s economic redevelopment manager, said the value of Copeland’s property has risen substantially in the past few years. The potential for “mixed-use opportunities” is there and some developers have an interest in long-term projects at the site, he said.

The city has no intention of forcing the company to move, though.

“I want to make clear, there’s no intention to kick Copeland Lumber out of business and out of this area,” said Lee Plemel, senior planner with the Planning and Community Development Department. “Certainly, we want Copeland Lumber to stay in Carson City and we want to continue to work with them.”

The permit approved Wednesday will allow the company one year to begin work on screening and improvements required for the permit in case talks with the city proceed regarding the move.