Resetting Expectations for the Kirkland Cannery Building's Future

The recent purchase of the Depression-era Kirkland Cannery Building by Carl Bradley has been heralded by many as it will preserve a part of Kirkland's past. The 1936 building, located in a light industrial zone of the Norkirk neighborhood, will be preserved for office and other uses by its new owner, Mr. Bradley. For over a decade, Thad Pound has sought an owner who would preserve the building rather than tear it down. The Pound family been connected to the Cannery Building since 1947 when they started using the space for their business, Kirkland Custom Cannery.

The city expressed interest in buying the building around 2006, but the funds were never allocated. The Kirkland Heritage Society has long held hopes that the building would someday become a museum. Since neither the city nor the Kirkland Heritage Society were able to achieve their goals, the sale of the cannery building to Bradley was the only realistic way of saving the structure. 

Lest there be any misconceptions in our community, let's get some facts straight. The cannery building is owned by an individual who has decided to preserve this piece of Kirkland's history for his private use and perhaps, one day the building will enter the national historic registry.

  • The Cannery Building is private property.
  • The Cannery Building is not public property. The city passed on purchasing it long ago.
  • The Cannery Building is not going to be a museum as some had hoped.

The opportunities for public use of the Cannery Building have come and gone. Under the new ownership, the building will avoid demolition and it will be preserved. 

The Bradley family considers the preservation of the Cannery Building a philanthropic endeavor. I agree. The timber and materials inside the building may very well be worth more to the owner if it were sold as scrap and reclaimed materials. Carl Bradley chose to purchase the building, to preserve it, and in so doing, Kirkland will benefit.

We wish the Bradley family well in their efforts with regard to this small piece of Kirkland's past.