Jeff Green | Oct 10, 2013
As usual, the phone keeps ringing; truck and car sales to customers from across the province continue to happen; and questions about repairs and parts keep being handled. The only difference is that years and years of files are being moved, and desks are being shuffled around.
“On Friday, 10 feet of this building is being torn down, so you might say this is a crazy busy week, ” said Tammy Gaylord from her desk on the second floor of the soon-to-be-former Bence Motors showroom and office building.
Looking through the door to the back room you can easily see what is happening. First off, all of the furniture has already been removed from the room and all that is left are stacks of boxed file folders that are being moved out. Through the window at the rear the reason why this is happening is obvious. A massive new building is literally going to grow into the old one at the end of the week.
Then, soon afterwards, hopefully within about six weeks according to Tammy Bence, the rest of the old building will be torn down when the gleaming new, modern building that will be the home of Bence Motors is completed.
“This has been a long time coming,” said Tammy. “Our business outgrew this building years ago, and this new building will serve us well into the future.”
The project is part of the Ford Canada's Millennium Facility Program, an effort to lower the company’s carbon footprint as dealers build new facilities throughout the country. Accordingly, the new Bence Motors has been built using Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) and early this week another concrete pour was taking place as part of an in-floor heating system installation. As well, the lighting systems in new Ford buildings are designed with efficiency in mind.
“We made the final decision to move ahead with construction early this spring,” said Tammy, “and we have been lucky to have hired a construction company that is able and willing to move quickly. The building is now 65% completed.”
The new Bence Motors will feature all new lifts and six service bays in the repair shop. A lunch counter and other features will be part of the new waiting area, and there will be room for showroom vehicles as well.
The grounds will continue to have ample room for the inventory of cars, and particularly Ford trucks, the vehicles that have made Bence Motors known regionally and beyond ever since the business opened at the junction of Highways 7 and 41 in 1946 - some 67 years ago.
This latest upgrade is the largest that the family has ever undertaken in that time.
The current building replaced the original small office, which is still standing just to the east of the car lot as a testament to the history of the business. Today, Bence Motors is run by siblings Tammy, Joe and Robert, under the watchful eye of Bob Bence Sr., who worked with his father when the business was first being started up.
With this major upgrade the Bence family, and the Ford Motor Company, are committing themselves to providing the opportunity for the third generation of Bence family members to keep the business alive and kicking well into the future.