Casual commentary about political, cultural and economic issues with a particular interest on the city of Winnipeg by John Dobbin
Friday, March 27, 2009
Post Office to become Cop Shop?
In a Free Press article, it was revealed that the Winnipeg Police are in formal talks to take over the Canada Post building on Graham.
The Public Safety Building, a Modernist design built in 1965 as part of the campus complex of the city that included the parkade and City Hall is literally falling apart. The price to renovate has escalated to the point that the city has decided it may be cheaper to buy a new facility than go through the hassle and inconvenience of finding temporary quarters for officers.
The Post Office was built in 1958 but has come available due to the fact the sorting plant and many other functions are being transferred to the airport and another downtown location in the year coming.
At the onset, it seems this decision is both a fiscally correct one and offers other intriguing possibilities for bringing some other police functions under one roof. The present post office covers a full city block and while there is some sense in moving its new location, it leaves a big hole in the downtown. The police headquarters could be the tonic.
So the big question is the Public Safety Building. Can it be saved? My view is that it might not be possible. The costs of fixing the problems might far too much compared to tearing it down.
And the question is: Who would want the building? There was Red River College musings but I can't imagine it would easy without someone footing the bill for repairs.
I've always found the building to be very modern and a little intimidating. Don't know how I'll feel about to being torn down but it is unacceptable to repair it for tens of million of dollars nor can it be left standing with pieces falling off of it.