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  #1  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 1:06 PM
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Winnipeg Police Headquarters | Graham Ave.

Now that the Winnipeg Police Service is set to move into their digs in December, I'm just thinking if there are already plans on what to do with the former site. Someone must know or heard of rumours concerning this area. Seems like the perfect time to develop this prime and historical piece of real estate - tucked in in the heart of the Exchange and flanked by Chinatown, RRC and City Hall. Can somebody, kindly, throw us a bone?
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  #2  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 1:52 PM
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Now that the Winnipeg Police Service is set to move into their digs in December, I'm just thinking if there are already plans on what to do with the former site. Someone must know or heard of rumours concerning this area. Seems like the perfect time to develop this prime and historical piece of real estate - tucked in in the heart of the Exchange and flanked by Chinatown, RRC and City Hall. Can somebody, kindly, throw us a bone?
There's a more than 100 year old caveat on the title that has the land reverting back to the original family that gifted it to the city unless it is expressly used for the public benefit. In other words, it has to be a government institution of sorts - it doesn't specify. But from what I understand of it, it can't be sold. It can only be assigned for the purposes of a qualifying public agency in the pursuit of the public good.

The Police HQ debacle just seems to get worse with every issue, doesn't it?
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  #3  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:02 PM
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I heard that some of the City Halls offices are moving there temporary, when City Hall is being renovated.
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  #4  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:14 PM
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If only the city were in a position to replace the PSB with a civic administration complex to centralize the various civic offices scattered around town. I'd love to see a new 10 to 15 storey building on the PSB's footprint.
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Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:26 PM
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If only the city were in a position to replace the PSB with a civic administration complex to centralize the various civic offices scattered around town. I'd love to see a new 10 to 15 storey building on the PSB's footprint.
That would actually be great. Unfortunately, you'd hollow out a few places they're the only tenants, but whatever.

There's also the issue of historical significance here. The heritage community has tried to have the building listed as an important representation of brutalist architecture that should be protected, so there's that for what it's worth.

Truthfully, the city just needs to retrofit the thing and get on with it. For what members of the civic service are doing, it's perfectly fine. If they can do it in a windowless strip mall or equally dreary bunker on Fort, they'll manage to push paper there with equal efficacy.
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  #6  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:38 PM
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That would actually be great. Unfortunately, you'd hollow out a few places they're the only tenants, but whatever.

There's also the issue of historical significance here. The heritage community has tried to have the building listed as an important representation of brutalist architecture that should be protected, so there's that for what it's worth.

Truthfully, the city just needs to retrofit the thing and get on with it. For what members of the civic service are doing, it's perfectly fine. If they can do it in a windowless strip mall or equally dreary bunker on Fort, they'll manage to push paper there with equal efficacy.
Actually, preserving the PSB and converting it into civic administration space would be pretty good too, but I thought retrofitting was cost-prohibitive?

Which places would take the hardest hit if the City left? The Hamilton Building on Main would be nearly empty... surely Artis could line up new tenants? Fort Garry Place's office space would take a hit but frankly, who cares?

I guess my comment is driven mainly by Edmonton-envy given that they're building this to accommodate civic staff. And their city hall is not even 25 years old!



Source:globalnews.ca
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  #7  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:48 PM
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equally dreary bunker on Fort
The City offices in Fort Garry Place just seem to suck the life right out of me whenever I visit. Couldn't imagine working in there.

Who knows, maybe a nice new building with lots of glass and natural light would help City staff do their jobs better - which in the end, would help us all!
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  #8  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:50 PM
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I thought the PSB upgrades where only cost prohibitive if it remained the police hq as it required extra levels above the standard building code, like being harden against a bomb, etc. A conversion to civic office or the RRC space would be a possibility.

It would seem to short term plan now as a light renovation to allow the relocation of the city hall staff while their own complex is renovated. This could be the first hint that RRC is not taking on the building, at least in the short term.

Separately though, if the Civic Centre Parkade is an unsafe building and remediation too costly why don't they bring in the dynamite and get rid of it already.
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  #9  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:54 PM
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I thought the PSB upgrades where only cost prohibitive if it remained the police hq as it required extra levels above the standard building code, like being harden against a bomb, etc. A conversion to civic office or the RRC space would be a possibility.

It would seem to short term plan now as a light renovation to allow the relocation of the city hall staff while their own complex is renovated. This could be the first hint that RRC is not taking on the building, at least in the short term.

Separately though, if the Civic Centre Parkade is an unsafe building and remediation too costly why don't they bring in the dynamite and get rid of it already.
PSB renovation and conversion to office space would be great... the building is good and it has architectural merit, so keeping it around would be for the best. However, the parkade clearly needs replacement... I think it's quite reasonable for the civic centre to have its own parkade.

So if the city chooses that option, the PSB block won't look that much different than before... a renovated PSB and a new replacement parkade.

I'd love to see that lousy park north of the PSB filled in with some appropriate development, though. Can that be done or is there something underneath which prevents that?
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  #10  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 2:56 PM
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Just a few additional facts on the PSB form earlier studies in 2014 at the cost of aprx: 275 K

$40 Million to refurbish for any other uses..exterior cladding,etc.. No choice but to: (demolish the parkade and remediate the site)

Reg: the Land usage deed: 1/3 of the parkade and structure must go to civic use as mentioned above
Anything North of the building up to James St can be sold or used for private use.
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  #11  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 3:04 PM
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Reg: the Land usage deed: 1/3 of the parkade and structure must go to civic use as mentioned above
Anything North of the building up to James St can be sold or used for private use.
Awesome.

So why the hell has that site never been developed? It just irks me... it's the anti-Old Market Square. Devoid of life all year round except for a small handful of summer noon hours when a middle aged secretary might leave her office to sit on a bench and read her novel.

The. Worst.



Source: Wikicommons
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  #12  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 3:24 PM
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Awesome.

So why the hell has that site never been developed? It just irks me... it's the anti-Old Market Square. Devoid of life all year round except for a small handful of summer noon hours when a middle aged secretary might leave her office to sit on a bench and read her novel.

The. Worst.



Source: Wikicommons
I Agree Esquire: It's been dreary waste of space since I can remember living in the Exchange on Princess as a teen while most of the area over the last decade has been seeing somewhat of a re-birth and renaissance.

Why? Who knows. A lack of will from City Hall until it became apparent the building and parkade was falling apart around them? Most likely scenario..
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  #13  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 3:45 PM
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Awesome.

So why the hell has that site never been developed? It just irks me... it's the anti-Old Market Square. Devoid of life all year round except for a small handful of summer noon hours when a middle aged secretary might leave her office to sit on a bench and read her novel.

The. Worst.
The plot actually holds all of the public safety building, the city hall council building, and a portion of the civic parkade. I'm guessing there's just enough of everything sitting on the title with the caveat to make transfer of the property a very difficult practicality...
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  #14  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 4:13 PM
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Originally Posted by esquire View Post
Awesome.

So why the hell has that site never been developed? It just irks me... it's the anti-Old Market Square. Devoid of life all year round except for a small handful of summer noon hours when a middle aged secretary might leave her office to sit on a bench and read her novel.

The. Worst.



Source: Wikicommons
I think much of the police underground parkade is under that lot.
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  #15  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 4:21 PM
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I think much of the police underground parkade is under that lot.
That was what I suspected, although I couldn't be sure.
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Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 4:27 PM
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Preserving the PSB is a great idea and I would bet that the cost overruns over the intial budget to refurb. it would be no greater than $50-60M, beside the city is awash in cash we can afford everything!
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  #17  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 4:34 PM
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Preserving the PSB is a great idea and I would bet that the cost overruns over the intial budget to refurb. it would be no greater than $50-60M, beside the city is awash in cash we can afford everything!
Heh heh... why so cynical?
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  #18  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 5:02 PM
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Heh heh... why so cynical?
It's hard to remember when something done by the city of Winnipeg was done right, on time and without a cost overrun! Really sad actually.
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  #19  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 6:27 PM
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If only the city were in a position to replace the PSB with a civic administration complex to centralize the various civic offices scattered around town. I'd love to see a new 10 to 15 storey building on the PSB's footprint.
Oops, I forgot that the city just bought a big office tower that's vacant at the moment... I guess it won't be building anything anytime soon.

Did the city ever consider just putting civic departments into the former Canada Post Building and just pulling out of the leased space it currently occupies?
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  #20  
Old Posted Sep 18, 2015, 6:50 PM
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Did the city ever consider just putting civic departments into the former Canada Post Building and just pulling out of the leased space it currently occupies?
An excellent idea that seems to make sense so I doubt it will ever happen. After all, who will move into the privately owned Fort Garry Place offices if the City moves out? We wouldn't want to have full taxpayer owned buildings while private landlords are left with vacancies.
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