Green Thumb Garden Centre and Nurseries in north Nanaimo. (News Bulletin photo)

Vancouver Island nursery property sells in historic deal

Green Thumb Garden Centre and Nurseries in north Nanaimo sold

A nursery in Nanaimo’s north end is no longer on the market.

Green Thumb Garden Centre and Nurseries and its 18-hectare property sold for an undisclosed amount after being on the market for more than a year.

Brad Bailey, associate vice-president with Colliers International Nanaimo, said he couldn’t disclose the sale price or the buyer at the moment, but said the deal is historic.

“It is the largest land sale transaction by sale price in Nanaimo’s history,” Bailey said.

Bailey said sale information is not being disclosed because he does not want to “upset owners and purchasers.” He said the $26-million number that has been reported by other media is wrong.

“The expectations were in the mid-$20 million range … it didn’t quite reach that level, but close,” he said. “I can’t disclose the buyer, but it was a private buyer and I don’t know what their plan is for the property at this point.”

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Green Thumb Garden Centre and Nurseries is one of the largest nurseries on Vancouver Island and has been operating for more than five decades on the property, which borders Island Highway, Uplands Drive and Hammond Bay Road.

Although the property is currently zoned as urban reserve, Bailey said the city wants to see the land filled in.

“The city wants to see higher density, mixed-use development,” he said. “It’s a great infill site for north Nanaimo and it will help densify what is obviously under-utilized urban property.”

Bailey said he doubts the nursery will close any time soon.

“I suspect that Green Thumb will continue operating for the foreseeable future,” he said.

Gerhard Gerke, owner of Green Thumb, confirmed the sale and said the nursery will provide comment at a later date.

Last year, landscape architect Fred Brooks called on city councillors to consider transforming the nursery into a new park.



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