The District of Lantzville wants to talk about the long-term future of its fire hall with the province.
Lantzville councillors, during a council meeting late last month, voted unanimously in favour of having staff request a meeting with the Claire Trevena, the minister of transportation and infrastructure, regarding the potential purchase of land the district’s fire hall currently sits on. Councillors are also hoping to talk to the minister about purchasing provincial land on Clark Drive and Ware Road as well as Harby Road.
The meeting, if successful, would take place during the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Vancouver in September.
Lantzville’s fire hall is located on leased provincial land at the corner of Superior Road and Highway 19. The lease has a term of 30 years and is set to expire in 2032.
Ronald Campbell, the district’s chief administrative officer, told the News Bulletin determining the future of the fire hall is a priority for council and staff.
“We just want to open the conversation with the province,” he said. “We want to know if they are even interested in selling the property.”
Concerns about the long-term future of Lantzville’s fire hall were raised last year by councillors and staff, who at the time agreed to allocate $100,000.
Campbell said the district would prefer to purchase the property from the province rather than extend a lease, explaining that it isn’t ideal for any municipal-owned building to be located on land it doesn’t own.
“Municipalities usually have fire halls on municipal-owned land,” Campbell said. “The fire hall is going to be there forever, so it would be better to have it on district-owned land.”
It is unclear what the province would do with the property; however, Campbell believes the province continues to harbour ambitions of installing a cloverleaf interchange at the Superior Road and Highway 19 intersection. He said if Lantzville can’t work out some kind of deal with the province, it will look to buy land elsewhere.
“If that is not in the cards, then at some point, we are going to have to look for a permanent site for our fire hall,” Campbell said.
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