The city’s most recent acquisition of a 2,500 square-foot lot on Bay Street means more space and a design revamp for the upcoming library/museum project.
The City of Trail purchased the property adjacent to the Riverfront Centre site for $90,000 after one year of negotiations were finalized with the building’s Vancouver-based owner, Trailblazer Properties.
The procurement of additional square-footage prior to the facility’s $6 million construction is a bonus because the building’s conceptual design didn’t fit the lot – the 18,000-square foot structure was jutting onto Helena Street.
“The acquisition of this property provides the city with a most timely opportunity given the added space that will become available for the Riverfront Centre,” said Mayor Mike Martin.
The city can now consider options such as building alignment, the development of additional parking, green space and depending on demand, potentially opening up commercial opportunities, like a coffee shop, within the facility
“Overall this property purchase aligns well with the city’s mandate to move forward with Trail’s economic development and the long-term sustainability of our entire region,” Martin added.
The aged building at 1525 Bay Ave. was occupied by Career Development Service’s wood shop program until this summer. After ‘Hand Made By’ moved across the street to be housed in the Community Inclusion Centre, the site is only used for storage.
While initial discussions with the property owners were challenging for the city, the tenant’s lease is over at the end of December, which helped put negotiations back on track.
“The timing to acquire this land worked well for all parties involved,” said David Perehudoff, Trail’s chief administrative officer. “With plans to retain an architect and commence the detailed design of the Riverfront Centre, everything is coming together nicely.”
The timing coincides with Monday night’s council appointments to various portfolios, including Coun. Eleanor Gattafoni Robinson and Coun. Robert Cacchioni accepting seats on the Riverfront Centre Committee, and Coun. Sandy Santori as the alternative.
Gattafoni Robinson has been a longtime Trail council representative at the historical society, and Cacchioni has sat on the library board for a number of years.
“We are excited to be on this committee after helping with fundraising, attending many meetings and being instrumental when we had the first conceptual drawings done,” said Gattafoni Robinson. “The purchase of property is a huge opportunity for us that opens a lot of avenues,” she explained. “We don’t know what that looks like yet, we have to wait for the architect’s drawings, but this is really good news.”
The old structure appears to be worse for wear from the exterior. However, before the building is bulldozed, the city includes a condition that all waste material be appropriately sorted and recycled in order to reduce tipping fees.
Additionally, city crews and the contractor will review any and all materials that can be salvaged and reused to lower the demolition cost.