Old buildings coming down

Albion Hall and other landmarks are soon to be demolished by the district.

Albion Hall and other landmarks are soon to be demolished by the district.

Get a quick look now because in few weeks some old landmarks around Maple Ridge will be no longer.

After a decision last fall to demolish Albion Hall rather than pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair, removal of asbestos started last week.

Council this year reconfirmed their decision to tear down the old building despite calls to preserve it.

The district took over ownership of the building from the Albion Community Association on March 31 in return for a promise to dedicate its market value to a future new community centre.

The demolition is going ahead despite the opposition from some residents, in particular Wendy Cook, who wants to turn it into a guild hall where artisans and artists could sell their wares.

But Daykin said likely would still be up to the district to ensure the building is safe and thus expensive repairs would be needed even if another group operated it.

The building has structural problems and bat guano in the ceiling.

“Some of the folks in the community don’t fully understand once you’re aware of items like that you can’t turn a blind eye.”

Once the asbestos has been removed, then the building will be razed. After that, other landmarks are soon to follow.

The district issued a request for tenders to demolition the dozen or so homes and warehouse on the three acres it recently bought on Selkirk Avenue and 227th Street.

A few homes still have tenants but they’re on their way out.

“I’m hoping by the end of the month or early June, that those will all come down.”

Meanwhile, the owners of the old gym on 224th Street at 117th Avenue have also told the municipality they’ll be tearing down the building, following a council order to remove it.