Town of Grand Bank seek­ing con­trol of for­mer hospi­tal property

The Southern Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - BY PAUL HER­RIDGE THE SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE

Grand Bank Mayor Rex Matthews said coun­cil will look to gain con­trol of the land cur­rently oc­cu­pied by the town’s for­mer cot­tage hospi­tal.

An an­nounce­ment a ten­der for the de­mo­li­tion of the struc­ture was made ear­lier this month.

Dur­ing coun­cil’s May 12 meet­ing, Mayor Matthews noted the ten­der is sched­uled to close this com­ing Mon­day.

The town’s next step is to make rep­re­sen­ta­tion to the Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion and Works, which owns the build­ing and property, he said.

“Once that (build­ing) is down, then the property, I guess, will go on the mar­ket, and they’re prob­a­bly go­ing to look for fair mar­ket value,” he said.

“For our best in­ter­ests, and to pro­tect our people, we have to get con­trol of that land. That’s the next big is­sue that we have on our plates to do.”

Opened in 1941 and ini­tially closed in the late 1980s, the cot­tage hospi­tal was re­vamped as the Grand Bank Com­mu­nity Health Cen­tre and con­tin­ued to op­er­ate un­til the present Grand Bank Health Cen­tre opened in 2008.

While it may cost some money, if the town is able to ac­quire the property, Mayor Matthews said coun­cil would be able to en­sure the land is put to good use, not­ing the price could be re­couped dur­ing a fu­ture sale.

“There are people very in­ter­ested in af­ford­able hous­ing,” he told coun­cil.

The mayor noted the project to dis­man­tle the build­ing, which con­tains lead and as­bestos, and re­me­di­ate the property would be ex­ten­sive.

“It’s go­ing to take a good crew a num­ber of months to re­move that fa­cil­ity,” he sug­gested.

pher­[email protected]­erngazette.ca

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