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Batshaw project in Beaconsfield still marred by delays

Click to play video: 'Batshaw building in Beaconsfield hanging in limbo'
Batshaw building in Beaconsfield hanging in limbo
WATCH: A new state-of-the-art centre for at-risk youth was supposed to open on Elm in Beaconsfield years ago, but the buildings remain closed and the site looks abandoned. While it's unclear why construction has been halted, officials insist that the facility will open its doors. Global's Tim Sargeant explains. – Sep 19, 2019

Six years after a ground-breaking ceremony for a youth centre in Beaconsfield, a pair of buildings sit abandoned with no sign of activity on Elm Avenue.

The centre was supposed to have opened as early as 2015 to house at-risk youths and young offenders but the organization that runs the Batshaw facilities still can’t confirm when construction will resume nor when the buildings will open to adolescents.

READ MORE: Officials promising to finish Batshaw homes for at-risk youth in Beaconsfield by fall 2018

In an email to Global News, the regional health and social services authority known as the CIUSSS (Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux de l’Ouest-de-l’Île-de-Montréal), confirmed on Thursday there are funds available to finish the construction.

“We are in the planning phase,” it said. “It is premature at this time to announce an official date of completion of the project.”

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Georges Bourelle, the mayor of Beaconsfield, says there is “frustration and disappointment” over the delays as the two buildings remain behind a locked fence in the area.

“We would have liked seeing the project completed,” he said.

READ MORE: Girl in Batshaw foster home sexually abused 3 times by other children: court documents

In 2017, the media relations team for the CIUSSS told Global News that the facilities would open the following year, in 2018, but that hasn’t happened.

On Thursday, Bourelle said he was told by CIUSSS the construction will resume and the buildings will open by fall 2020. The regional health authority did not provide a completion date to Global News.

“It’s taken way too long,” said Bourelle. “But at least now looking forward we’re confident, that based on the information we’re getting, that it’s going to be completed.”

The Quebec government was not available to comment on the delays or when construction would resume.

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