Jul 07, 2015

Council Votes to Finance Purchase of Downtown Properties for a Future City Hall

Town of Ladysmith Council has voted to buy four downtown Ladysmith properties as the future site of a new City Hall.

The properties are located at 12, 20 and 26 Buller Street and 721 First Avenue.  Plans for the new building include exploring options to share space with other organizations such as the Vancouver Island Regional Library.  The purchase price is $920,000.

The Town will finance the majority of the purchase with a loan from the Municipal Finance Authority, and will pay off the loan with the proceeds from the sale of other Town properties on Christie Road and Jim Cram Drive.  Under Section 175 of the Community Charter, the loan must be paid off within five years.

“We need to explore the opportunities to replace City Hall because the current working environment is too inefficient. The building is too small and too difficult to update to the standards we require,” said Mayor Stone.  “The location of these properties in the downtown core is ideal. As we move forward we will be able to bring our teams together in one location and improve the level of service we offer to our community and those looking to invest in Ladysmith.  We strongly believe that it is a priority to keep City Hall downtown to bring our community and visitors together in the heart of Ladysmith.”

Plans for a new City Hall are in the preliminary stages, and no construction date has been set.  Council said that they are exploring options to share space in the proposed building with other organizations such as the Vancouver Island Regional Library.  

“Until we move forward with the proposed new City Hall, we hope that we may be able to offer the use of these properties to support downtown businesses and community occasions.  They could be used for additional parking or as a location for public events,” Mayor Stone added.

One of the properties is currently home to the Ladysmith Museum.  Council confirmed that the Ladysmith Museum is a valuable asset in the downtown and that the Museum will always be taken into consideration as the Town moves ahead with construction plans.