Former Kelowna cop shop to face wrecking ball in November - InfoNews

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Former Kelowna cop shop to face wrecking ball in November

A pedestrian walks by the now-closed RCMP detachment building on Doyle Street in Kelowna, September 26, 2018.
September 27, 2018 - 8:00 AM

KELOWNA - It’s doubtful too many people have fond memories of the place — ending up inside the RCMP detachment was a mark of bad behaviour in Kelowna for 56 years.

But anyone who harbours sentiment for the old building better have a last look now as the former Kelowna RCMP detachment on Doyle Street is facing a sentence of its own, due to face the wrecker’s ball sometime in November.

And that’s not a metaphor. The hardened concrete in and around the cellblocks will require an old-school wrecking ball.

“It just pulverizes it,” said one worker at the site. Other than that, it’s a pretty straightforward demolition. “You’ll be surprised how quickly it will come down,” he added.

City of Kelowna project manager Scott Bushell said crews are working inside right now, removing hazardous materials such as asbestos, lead, PCBs and refrigerants in old machinery.

Demolition firm McColman & Sons Demolition Ltd. is handling the deconstruction of the building in a contract worth $493,000.

Kelowna RCMP have long since moved anything sensitive from the old detachment to their new police services building on Richter Street and Clement Avenue which opened in June 2017.

The building was last used to house the accused in the murder trial of gangster Jonathan Bacon which wrapped up last spring.

Left behind are miles of cabling from CCTV and alarms systems from its days as working police station beginning in 1962.

The $48-million replacement building holds almost 400 officers and staff and is equipped to the modern standard the old building lacked.

Once the site is laid bare, the City of Kelowna real estate division will begin marketing, although there has already been strong developer interest in the high-profile property. Current zoning would allow a 12-storey residential condominium on the site although a developer is almost certainly to ask for height variance.

The city has said previously it could realize as much as $2.6 million from sale or long-term lease of the site.

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