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Lethbridge group hopes ‘The Bentley’ can help revitalize downtown core

Lethbridge group hopes ‘The Bentley’ can help revitalize downtown core
WATCH ABOVE: The "Living Downtown Lethbridge" group of investors is planning to transform an over 100-year-old building into a condominium residence. When complete, the building will be called "The Bentley".

A group of investors from Living Downtown Lethbridge is hoping the revitalization of a building near Galt Gardens can be a part of enhancing Lethbridge’s core.

The over 100-year-old building, located at 118 5 St. South, is going to be a condominium residence.

“Our goal is to bring as many people downtown as we can,” treasurer and investor with Living Downtown Lethbridge Loralee Burton said. “Walking the streets, shopping and visiting the great concerts that are across the road. That’s our vision, to change downtown Lethbridge.”

A timeline has yet to be set for construction, primarily because of the plethora of issues within the building. The former hardware store has been vacant for seven years and suffered significant flood damage in the basement.

“It’s ugly,” Burton admitted with a laugh. “It’s been neglected for a very, very long time. So we’re working with engineers, we’re doing ground testing, we’re doing everything we can to see what we have to work with.”

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When complete, the building will be called The Bentley. The group plans to pay tribute to the original builder, Harry Bentley, who owned Lethbridge’s first store in 1885.

“He was instrumental in so many ways (in Lethbridge),” Burton said. “The curling club, the lacrosse club, the baseball…He was with the chamber, he was with immigration and he was the mayor twice. So we thought as part of this, it will be called the Bentley.”

Currently the city isn’t putting any money towards the project, but investors are eligible to apply for residential grants.