Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 27/3/2009 (3858 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The city and Canada Post have finally started formal talks about moving the Winnipeg Police Service into the Crown corporation's soon-to-be-vacant mail-processing facility on Graham Avenue.
The city is looking at purchasing the Canada Post property and converting the building into a new police headquarters as well as office space for a variety of police services, including the criminal investigation bureaus, stolen auto unit, crime analysis, evidence stores, community relations and a police museum.
The future of the existing police headquarters at Princess Street's Public Safety Building has been uncertain since late 2007, when the city placed renovations to the structure's crumbling exterior on hold.
The cost of replacing the Tyndall-stone cladding and moving police in and out of temporary office space elsewhere had ballooned beyond $40 million from an initial estimate of $17 million.
In February 2008, the Winnipeg Police Service identified the Canada Post building as a possible new home, given the corporations intention to move its mail-processing into a new facility under construction at Richardson International Airport.
Formal talks are finally taking place, Winnipeg Mayor Sam Katz, police Chief Keith McCaskill and Canada Post spokesman Bill Davidson said in a statement this morning.
The Graham Avenue building would allow police to deploy downtown foot patrols more easily and provide police easier access to the provincial law courts on York Avenue, the statement reads.
The cost of purchasing and renovating the new building could be as much as $100 million, based on documents the city submitted to Ottawa in January as part of an infrastructure funding request.
If the city decides to purchase the building, it will then face a decision about selling or demolishing the Public Safety Building, which architects and heritage advocates admire as a part of an ensemble of modernist buildings in the Exchange District.
Any prospective buyer for the Public Safety Building would be saddled with the costly repairs to limestone exterior.
Red River College, whose downtown campus is located across the street, is not interested right now, said spokesman Colin Fast, who noted the college is preoccupied with completing a deal to renovate the Union Bank Tower on Main Street.