The Heritage Building is going up for sale.
The former post office, located on 50th Avenue and 50th Street, is structurally sound but would need upgrades to bring it up to public-use standards. It would cost the city approximately $3 million to bring the building up to code as a public-use facility which could include work on the HVAC system among others.
Councillor Aaron Buckingham says private owners won’t have to meet those standards.
“If I bought that building personally I wouldn’t have to necessarily have it to that standard. It shouldn’t be a deterrent to anybody looking to purchase the building. It’s just a deterrent for the city for that public-use reason.”
The outside of the building cannot be changed by the future buyer because of its heritage designation.
“It’s not going to change the landscape downtown or the look so that building will remain the same as it has always been on the outside.”
Councillor Jonathan Torresan noted that if they had decided to renovate the facility they would have no use for it and the costs would be on the backs of the taxpayers. He says they would have to lease the space which would make them competition to local developers.
“If you want to be competitive at all and charge fair market value on that property than you’re going to be taking a loss on that building. Now you’re taking a loss on the property that otherwise those individuals could be renting from a private developer. Now they’re renting from the city and that loss is covered with property tax dollars.”
The building was last assessed in 2018 at a price of $445,000. The city has not decided on whether they will be putting it up for sale themselves or using a realtor to sell the property.