After a lengthy and gruelling meeting – it seems I am no longer a consideration for this building. I was eliminated by council as an option for saving this heritage site, simply because, the lawn bowlers don’t want me there. They made ridiculous comments and suggestions, glared and stared at me, even whispered and giggled at me while I was trying to speak. I wonder if some of the people present were aware of what was really happening. It’s almost as though they didn’t realize I was trying to save their clubhouse (no government grants here… just my own money) Then I see them on television – “please save our club” sigh…. I was trying to…
I believe that they felt that keeping the old building was somehow standing in the way of their free multi million dollar government grant… and somehow I was responsible… wow… (shaking head)
The reason their new site hasn’t been approved is because they have no site plan… and nothing is holding them up but themselves. There is a serious disconnect somewhere here.
The final outcome is that the city has excused itself from the table, and left the repurposing to the club… offering a demolishing date of March 1, 2011. They clearly have no intention of designating the site as heritage either. Sadly, moving the building would be risky and very expensive. They have scared off 8 others that site inspected with me back in March, so no help there.
There were generous high fives all around when the demolition date was approved, and many of the attendees left at that point. Message pretty clear.
The president of the club announced that this was really about clearing a few extra parking spaces much to the chagrin of many of the neighbours on Walnut Street. Not sure what the message was from the caretaker – he seemed… um… uncertain of what he wanted.
The neighbourhood clearly wants me there – the city offered approval on zoning, and I offered the money to restore the building…. but yet the club still announced that they have no offers on the table as yet to repurpose the building. What????
They say I’d compete with them – not sure what on earth that means… they are a private club, members only… and I’d be selling to the public. Sure, they’d be welcome – because I’d share my sandbox… ahem… but can they not instruct their members to support their club? isn’t it just that easy? Perhaps a business plan showing their coffee sales to the neighbours and park goers would clarify how much money is on the table here.
If I open a cafe – I want a building with character… in a unique location… not a square box. I’m looking at a nice little building in Lakefield later in the week. It may just be the fit I need.
Sorry – but I have to walk away from this – there was never anything to be done – just a big waste of resources and effort all around.
By the way – for all of those surprised at the $35,000 offer – they offered the building to the city in January for somewhere between $40,000 and $50,000. My offer was in line with what they stated as their expectations. I would have to reroute and locate all city ammenities, and pay city staff to bring them in. THEN fix the building.