Royal Eddie has New Owner and New Future

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Thunder Bay Fire Rescue
Royal Edward Arms
Thunder Bay Fire Rescue
Royal Edward Arms

THUNDER BAY – The Royal Edward Arms has a new owner. City Council has authorized the sale of the Royal Edward Arms building located at 108-114 May St South. ‘This agreement shows that the City is serious about preserving our history and historical buildings, properties and sites,’ said Councillor Larry Hebert, a Member of the City’s Heritage Advisory Committee. “It is great that we have found a buyer who will restore the building.”

Mr. Ahsanul Habib of Habib Architects Inc. (1561279 Ontario Ltd), was the successful proponent and has entered into a conditional Agreement of Purchase and Sale with the City. The Purchaser intends to substantially renovate the eight-storey, 64-unit heritage building for mixed commercial and residential uses. The purchase price is $500,000 – the highest offer received and is also reflective of the required investment to the building. The Agreement is conditional on the Purchaser reaching construction milestones.

The building was marketed through an Expression of Interest and Request for Proposals process in November 2014, after Thunder Bay District Housing Corporation announced it would not be renewing its lease for the building.

The move could open the door to many possibilities for the old structure. The Royal Edward was constructed in 1928 and was a top ranked hotel for years. There are other proposals in the downtown Fort William business core, including “The Hub” which social entrepreneur Lori Paras from the Red Bicycle had been building.

Renovations on the historic Royal Eddie are expected to start this summer, and will be ongoing.

“Since this is a historic building, the City had been seeking a buyer who is interested in restoring the building and adding value to the downtown south core,” said Joel DePeuter, Manager – Realty Services. “We are pleased that this agreement has been reached.”

The Royal Edward Arms Hotel, constructed in 1928, was purchased by the City in 1981, for $165,000 when the hotel was in financial distress and was intended to be used as a police station. Ultimately the City leased the building to Thunder Bay Non Profit Housing, now Thunder Bay District Housing Corporation, from 1985 to 2015.

 

 

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