Decision on former Moncton High School imminent: minister
Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Bill Fraser visited the former Moncton High School for the first time on Friday to announce a decision on the future of the iconic building was imminent.
Fraser was accompanied by Finance Minister Cathy Rogers and Moncton Centre MLA Chris Collins, who toured the school as part of the announcement.
“We hope to make a decision and to make this public within days,” Rogers said.
While the trio would not divulge any details about the sale, Rogers did hint that more than one tenant may occupy the vacant property
“It’s a pretty big building and there’s been great interest expressed and we’re just working on details with the purchaser and they’re working on securing tenant,” Rogers said.
Owned by the province, the city-designated heritage building has been a source of controversy since it closed in 2015.
Since then, proposals have been in the works on what to do with the 82-year-old, including tearing it down. The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure has been maintaining the property at a cost to taxpayers of between $250,000 and $300,000 a year. Fraser says the province will be happy to get this building of its books.
“It’s important for us to see some development here, and in general we want to find ways to do that without having to pump millions of dollars and that’s the responsible thing to do, not only for this proposal but any building that we have across the province,” Fraser said.
For Collins and his constituents, who’ve been waiting on the government to make a decision on the building, he says he’s relieved the time is near.
“It’s been frustrating, but it’s important to have the right proposal,” Collins said. “Over the course of the last few years, these proposals have evolved, and I’m glad that the government feels that given the perimeters that they’ve set … they feel those perimeters have been met.”
The long awaited decision on the future of the former Moncton high school should be out within a couple of weeks.
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