Last night, Ward 2 Councillor Bob Bratina sent a note to his fellow councillors and city staff outlining a proposal he has negotiated with Darko Vranich, president and CEO of Vrancor Developments.
Vrancor owns the old Federal Building at the corner of Main St. W. and Hess St., as well as the neighbouring former HMP building at Main St. W. and Caroline.
Vranich, who recently built the Staybridge Suites hotel on Market St., will provide office space to the city in a restored Federal Building for $20 per square foot.
LIUNA's fifteen year plan has the city paying $22.50 per square foot for five years, rising to $23.50 for the next five years, and then to $26.50 for the last five years.
Vranich, who is also building a Hilton Suites hotel where the HMP building now stands, has agreed to buy the Lister Block from LIUNA for the price they paid for it in 1999 - $1.6 million - and restore it to residential and commercial use.
This is certainly a good plan for Vrancor. It also gives the city a slightly better deal for its office space (albeit still higher than the going rate) and preserves not one but two historic buildings.
Definitely more to come on this one!
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