One week after a Sherwood Park, Alta., complex housing Strathcona County Hall, a library and a community centre was shaken by two explosions, an official told reporters Tuesday night that a plan is in place for staff re-entry but it’s still not clear when the buildings will reopen to the public.
“Until all services are restored, many of our residents are trying to access this site for things such as bill payment,” Strathcona County Director of Emergency Services Chief Jeff Hutton said. “We appreciate their sense of responsibility and that they’re trying to keep that process going on. And we would redirect them to our public services yard at 370 Streambank Avenue, that includes utility bills, assessment and taxation, inspection fees for planning and development.”
In a news release, the county said an initial structural assessment of the parkade where the explosions occurred has been completed and determined the county hall and community centre are structurally sound.
“[An] environmental assessment has been completed on county hall and cleaning efforts have begun,” the county said. “Restoration is expected to be complete after the weekend.”
Watch below: The RCMP released new details Saturday about what happened when two explosions went off at a Strathcona County parkade. Meanwhile, the mayor said a security review is underway. Julia Wong filed this report on Nov. 10, 2018.
However, the county said the environmental assessment of the community centre and the parkade is not yet complete and that cleaning efforts would only begin once that is done.
Emergency crews were called to the complex last Tuesday after a pair of explosions rocked its parkade. Over the weekend, police said a 21-year-old man is behind the first explosion but they still don’t have a motive.
“We can now confirm that Kane Kosolowsky purposely caused an explosion underneath a half-tonne truck on the lower level parkade using a substance that is yet to be determined,” Supt. Dave Kalist of the Strathcona County RCMP said at a news conference late Saturday morning.
Kosolowsky was found injured after the first explosion and was taken to hospital where he later died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Police said they believe the first explosion caused damage to several vehicles in the parkade and that the gas tank of one of those vehicles caught fire, triggering the second blast.
Watch below: Global News has learned a deadly explosion triggered a major police response in Sherwood Park, Alberta on Tuesday night. On Nov. 7, 2018, Mercedes Stephenson filed this report.
On Tuesday, Hutton described the state of the parkade following the blasts.
“Although there was some surface damage at the immediate site of the explosion, the parkade is structurally sound,” he said. “Damage is mostly due to residue from the fire and smoke.”
Hutton added that vehicles that have been in the upper level of the parkade since the blasts have started to be towed and that they were being taken to a secure lot. Strathcona County Enforcement Services is managing that process. He said vehicles on the lower level will need additional time before they can be safely transported.
On Wednesday afternoon, some of the vehicles had been brought out of the parkade.
Aside from Kosolowsky, nobody else was injured in last week’s incident but the complex was evacuated immediately following the blasts.
On Saturday, the RCMP said “no additional threats were located” after officers spent days searching the area.
Rod Frank, the mayor of Strathcona County, said Saturday that a security review is underway that is looking at the incident and to see if any improvements can be made.
“There will be no expense spared on this,” he said on the weekend.
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Sherwood Park is a large community located just east of Edmonton.
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