City Council has unanimously approved the $10.7 million sale of the old police headquarters on 4th Avenue.
The building and adjacent parking lot are being purchased by Duchuk Holdings, which intends to turn the property into a modern office with more exterior windows.
Council greenlit the project during their first full-agenda meeting since the Oct. 26 election.
Despite the unanimous approval, councillors voiced concerns over the sales process and the lack of conditions attached to the purchase.
“The last thing I would want to see is another dead building front on a main street downtown,” said Ward 1 Councillor Darren Hill, citing worries another parkade could be put in at the property.
Though there are no contractual requirements ensuring Duchuk Holdings converts the property into an office, there are tax incentives. A five-year tax abatement from the city will be activated once the space opens, administration said.
Councillors were also assured communications with the buyers all pointed to an eagerness to start the transition to an office building.
More details on unsuccessful offers were also revealed during Monday afternoon’s meeting.
Administration said there were six previous offers for 130 and 140 4th Avenue. Two of the offers fell through due to the buyer dropping out, while four more deals were terminated due to breaches of contract.
An $11-million offer that fell through was made public earlier this year, while another for $14.7 million was unsuccessful last year.
When the old police headquarters was first put on the market in early 2015, the property was valued at $15 million.
Mayor Charlie Clark told 650 CKOM on Friday the $10.7 million offered by Duchuk Holdings would do.
“We’re seeing a softening of the market,” he said. “It’s time to make the sale and move on for the city.”