City saying little about development of downtown parking lot

An 85-bed residential care facility will be constructed in the Bennett parking lot on 29th Avenue

No details are being revealed yet about the sale of publicly owned land in downtown Vernon.

The Interior Health Authority has announced that an 85-bed residential care facility will be constructed at 3006 29th Avenue, also known as the City of Vernon’s Bennett parking lot.

“I can’t give you any information. It’s still in-camera,” said Coun. Bob Spiers when asked about whether the property has been sold to H & H Total Care Services.

A similar response also came from Mayor Akbal Mund.

“We are still in-camera because it’s a land acquisition and the process is still underway.”

According to the city, negotiations are underway and the sale is expected soon.

“The sale of city owned lands is at the discretion of council,” said Will Pearce, chief administrative officer.

“Terms and conditions are being considered by council. As is typical to municipalities and consistent with sound business practice and governing legislation, consideration of terms of sale on land are an in-camera or confidential) item.”

The care home will be a multi-storey building with 85 publicly-funded and five private complex care beds, as well as additional private assisted living beds.

IHA says construction is anticipated to begin this year, with occupancy expected in mid-2017.

While the Bennett parking lot will be developed,  Mund is confident parking options downtown will not be reduced because the city-owned New Delhi building is being demolished.

“There will be some parking occur there,” he said.