By Jason Leach
Published November 17, 2011
Get ready to have your blood boil. The Hamilton Realty Capital Corporation had to pull out of their plans for the old Sandbar Tavern at 193 King Street East because the city pulled public health from the project and moved it to the McMaster project.
According to the report:
140 King William Street. City Council, at its meeting held August 13, 2009, approved the sale of 140 King William Street to the HRCC. The HRCC proposed to develop the municipal parking lot to accommodate a retail/commercial/institutional development together with a multi-level parking structure. Public Health was to be the anchor tenant, however the City decided instead, to put Public Health into the new McMaster Health Centre. The HRCC continued to seek prospective tenants for the development. The conditional offer was extended to September 1, 2011, however recently, the HRCC agreed to withdraw its offer in favour of Hamilton Police Services.
193 King Street East, the site of the former Sandbar Tavern. City Council at its meeting held September 27, 2006: accepted the transfer of 193 King Street East to the City by the Crown in Right of Ontario; declared the land surplus to the requirements of the City; and, requested that the City enter into negotiations with the HRCC for the purposes of transferring the property to the HRCC. The HRCC submitted an Offer to Purchase the property in April 2010. The HRCC proposed to incorporate 193 King Street East into the redevelopment of 140 King William Street. The conditional offer was extended to September 1, 2011, however, recently the HRCC agreed to withdraw its offer in favour of Hamilton Police Services
140 King William is the parking lot just north of 193 King Street East that backs onto it.
In an attached letter to Planning and Economic Development general manager Tim McCabe, HRCC President Richard Abboud wrote:
Revival and expansion of 140 King William with the addition of new tenants, including a francophone group, City Housing Hamilton, a grocery store, Public Health, and Parking. We believe this multi-stakeholder, mixed-use project of significant scale would have had a significant impact on Downtown Hamilton. The project was fully advanced from a conceptual, site planning, design and pre-construction standpoint, after a significant amount of time and effort expended by HRCC, its consultants and City Staff. This project was cancelled due to the loss of Public Health as the anchor tenant.
So: not only are we contributing tons of money to McMaster, we are also aiding in the demolition of the Board of Education building and killing a great mixed-use project on King William that would have had apartments, offices, public health, grocery store and parking garage.
For now, we're left with the beautiful string of surface parking lots on King William instead.
Does anyone know what the police have in mind? They are listed as the new prospective owner of the King William/Sandbar property.
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