The Raymond Care Centre has sat on a lonely road empty for over a decade. It used to house students as an agricultural college, and then later nurses and doctors. Now, Alberta Health Services – who owns the facility – has decided to demolish it.
It’s upsetting news for some area residents.
“Although it’s a building, it has some emotional significance, some historical significance and it will be sad to see it go,” resident Stewart Foss said. “It used to be a beautiful facility with beautiful grounds and I think a lot of people in a community can envision it becoming that again.”
A letter sent out by the Ministry of Health to the Town of Raymond said if the building was not found historically significant, the province wanted the town’s approval to tear it down. The town responded in agreement with the decision.
“Years ago, we were really interested in that building – we wanted it,” Raymond Mayor George Bohne said. “It was offered to us and then governments changed, things change and people change. As a result, that never happened.”
Global News was provided a statement from the province that reads:
“The Ministry of Culture and Tourism has been working closely with Alberta Health Services and the Town of Raymond for a number of years to explore the feasibility of preserving the building. Unfortunately, no economically feasible option has been identified to date.”
Bohne said after seeing the condition of the building, he isn’t surprised.
“Nobody wants to put up any money for it. That’s really what is driving the issue,” he said.
“It’s a huge cost.”
If demolition is the only option left for the Raymond Care Centre, Foss said he hopes there is one last opportunity to get inside and document it before it hits the ground.
“That’s really what I’m asking. Can we get in? Can we see it? Can we document it for historical purposes? Can we get a proper scope of what is really wrong here?”