The Paris Wincey Mills Co.

EXECUTIVE VIEW name, but a word describing a twilled fabric of wool and cotton.The original Par- is WinceyMills complex was constructed in 1889 in the downtown core near the confluence of the Nith and Grand rivers; an advantageous location for harnessing waterpower.The plant opened with 25 employees and quickly grew to 125, add- ing an additional mill to the site in 1916. In its heyday, the Paris WinceyMills Co. distributed high-quality textiles from Halifax,Nova Scotia to Victoria, BC. In 1959,with the war long over and orders for cloth goods dwindling, a local newspaper reported impending closure of the WinceyMills.That prompted a bid from a Lis- towel-based company that purchased the mills and began producing yarns for Spinrite Yarns and Dyers.When that entity ran its course, the facility was taken over by Canadian Tire, and re- incarnated as a franchise store and automotive service center. The three-story building was left vacant in early 2013 when Canadian Tire relocated to a modern, single-level facility.At that time, the WinceyMills building was under threat of dem- olition to ease the town’s increasing need for more parking. Paris was becoming a bedroom community for the Greater Toronto Area (GTA); real estate was booming, new home construc- tion was rampant, the industrial base was grow- ing, and a steady stream of families were mov- ing to this scenic, affordable community.That growth continues to swell in all sectors, tourism is flourishing, and heritage revitalization is a priority in the historic downtown landscape. With change comes challenge In 2014, rumors were still swirling about the fate of the emptyWinceyMills building,when brothers Arie andWalter Koppelaar (Walters Group construction) purchased the site under their management companyWingbury Prop- erties Inc..A private family company,Wingbury generally deals in new builds, but WinceyMills is a “pet project” said general manager Geraldine Bolle.“One of the owners said there were so many amazing features in this building, that