A crane unloads modular cabins at Boulder Mountain Resort in Revelstoke

There is a growing need for affordable housing in the Shuswap, just as there is throughout Canada and fortunately a family-owned company in Sicamous is gearing up to help fill this need. When the Kyllo family purchased Twin Anchors in 1977, it began building houseboats for a growing local market and over the decades it helped shape Sicamous’s reputation as the “Houseboat Capital of Canada.” Over the years, they have built over 500 houseboats.

One of two massive, luxurious houseboats under constructions at Twin Anchors in Sicamous, photo by Jim Cooperman

When the demand for houseboats softened over twenty years ago, they adapted their 50,000 square-foot manufacturing facility to build portable structures for the rapidly expanding oil, gas and mining sectors. These units can vary in size from 12 to 16 feet wide and up to 60 feet long and the units can be combined to create structures as large at 64 feet by 100 feet. Portability is the key advantage to these units that are built on steel skids and placed on either rig mats or pilings. Since they began in 2006, their company, TA Structures, has built over 1000 units for industrial use as well as for classrooms and daycares.

This unit under construction will be a washing unit for the oil and gas industry, photo by Jim Cooperman

In 2014, as a result of the slowdown in the oil and gas industry, Twin Anchors added a new division, TA Modular, that began building park model recreational trailers and modular homes. Customers appreciate the advantages of modular construction, including faster builds, quality control due to the climate controlled, indoor construction process, and lower costs.

All the plans are created by Twin Anchors architect, Ty Tippet, photo by Jim Cooperman

Recently, TA Modular has rebranded to become Kyllo Homes to better reflect their company’s vision and slogan, “Homes for the Heart.” They can build any size or shape of home up to three stories high and each have the capability for solar power. A typical design for an approximately 1000 square-foot home is made up of two units and can be built in just 12 weeks. If the building is set on piers, there are major cost savings, and it only takes a crew of four just one week to install the home and connect the utilities.

The company now has plan for creating two subdivisions in Sicamous that will provide up to 80 homes and it is in discussions with other developers to provide modular home for more subdivisions. Currently, their manufacturing facility has the capacity to build upwards of 50 homes per year and there are options for expansion that would allow them to build even more homes every year.

Modular cabins under construction

Twin Anchors is by far the largest employer in Sicamous, with 40 employees, including carpenters, electricians, welders, cabinet makers, office staff and an architect who works with customers to create individual designs that suit their needs and the site. The company works closely with the school district’s apprentice program and there are currently four recent Sicamous Secondary grads working there. Employees appreciate their three days off per week due to the company’s four, 10-hour-day work schedule.

One of two massive, luxurious houseboats under constructions at Twin Anchors in Sicamous, photo by Jim Cooperman

During my recent tour of the facility, I was impressed by the two massive, luxurious houseboats under construction that will be going to private operators in California. Inside the huge aluminum pontoons are chambers for both the grey water and black water. Solar panels are set to go on the roof, so that the generator will only be needed for up to one hour per day.

These solar panels will be added to the roofs of the houseboats, photo by Jim Cooperman

There are also two, nearly completed, 12 by 40-foot-long buildings on skids that will be combined as a two-classroom unit for a Christian school in Kelowna. The provincial government has recently created new rules to develop more housing and increase density with communities. Adding another small “carriage” house to a city lot can provide affordable rental homes for those who need them and offers a secondary income for homeowners. Kyllo Homes will be able to build these carriage houses quickly for lower costs and thus help solve the housing crisis. The Shuswap is fortunate to have an innovative, progressive company like Twin Anchors that can evolve to reflect the needs of the future while providing well paid jobs that support families and our communities.

These two sections will be combined to form a two classroom structure as shown by Twin Anchors manufacturing manager, Nigel Watson
photo by Jim Cooperman


More photos taken at Twin Anchors Sicamous manufacturing facility:

Most walls are built on this huge table, photo by Jim Cooperman
The cabinet shop, photo by Jim Cooperman
the portable units are built on steel skids, photo by Jim Cooperman
A completed small modular home ready to ship

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