XL Wood Products plans rebuild this year

In this August 2018, file photo, XL Wood Products owner Irvin Paskesz (center) participates in a South Glengarry council meeting. Paskesz wants to rebuild the plant, east of Green Valley, Ont., that was destroyed by fire in November 2020. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

GREEN VALLEY – A South Glengarry wood pallet manufacturing plant, whose operations were destroyed by fire in late November, plans to rebuild this year.

It would like to stay in Green Valley.

XL Wood Products owner Irvin Paskesz will make a presentation to South Glengarry council tonight (Monday).

In a letter to council ahead of the presentation, Paskesz is asking for an exemption from the spring half-load trucking restrictions on Concession Road 8 from County Road 34 to the property – about a kilometer – to allow trucks to bring construction materials to the property.

Without the heavy load exemption, Paskesz estimates it would delay work up to three months during the spring thaw.

The company also wants to be able to put an “Atco type foldaway building” on the site while going through the construction approval process. Give the time for permits, it “can be a drawn out process which can take anywhere from 6 months to a year,” Paskesz says in the letter to council.

With the building up, he believes they would be able to immediately rehire some of the 40 area employees who’ve been “waiting to be able to come back.”

The company estimates the build will cost $2.5 million to $3 million.

XL Wood Products says its annual sales were about $7 million and it had a payroll of $1.5 million just prior to the fire.

Four buildings were destroyed on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020. Fire investigators were never able to determine the cause, though it wasn’t considered suspicious.