Viva Pharmaceuticals gears up for construction

Published on Wed, Dec 1, 2010 by By Tara Nelson

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A large Canadian pharmaceutical company is gearing up for the construction of a planned $40 million manufacturing facility in Blaine.

Viva Pharmaceuticals, of Richmond, B.C., recently submitted a development application for the first phase of a planned manufacturing facility on eight acres on Odell Road.

The first phase calls for three buildings with 34,000 square feet of production space, 10,000 square feet of storage space and 9,000 square feet of office space.

Once approved, construction on the project could begin in as little as two months.

Blaine community development director Michael Jones said the facility could bring as many as 300 highly skilled jobs to the area; however only about 50 jobs would be created during the first phase. Those could include technical jobs, general warehousing, laboratory and manufacturing positions.

Bellingham-based Credo Construction will be the project’s general contractor.

While most  hiring will be done locally, some of Viva Pharmaceutical’s management and technical staff may come from existing facilities of Viva Pharmaceutical’s in Canada, according to their web site.

Viva Pharmaceutical was established in 1994 with an emphasis on manufacturing pharmaceutical and natural health food products, according to their website.

The project’s completion date was originally scheduled for late 2009 but economic conditions forced the company to postpone their plans.

The company is B.C.’s largest pharmaceutical manufacturer with annual revenues close to $10 million, according to information posted on the Richmond Chamber of Commerce’s web site.

Blaine city manager Gary Tomsic said he thought the project would be a huge benefit to the city both in terms of job creation and helping maintain a quality business environment.

The company, although one of Canada’s largest,  is family-owned and operated, he said.

“They’ve been very involved in the community in Richmond, B.C. and they appear to be very generous in helping local hospitals and other amenities. They seem to be good, solid business people,” he said.

For more information about the project, visit the city of Blaine’s website at www.cityofblaine.com.

The website for Viva Pharmaceuticals is www.vivapharm.com.