HUNTSVILLE – The log cabin that sat in Riverside Park is no more.
GOING DOWN: .
The demolition of the OPP community policing station at Riverside Park prompts questions by some community members.
Tamara de la Vega
The cabin, formerly used for police shift change briefings and community policing meetings, was demolished on Friday, Dec. 14.
Huntsville town council gave approval for the demolition in an attempt to revitalize the park.
But some community members expressed shock at the building being torn down instead of being relocated for low-income housing or another alternate purpose.
David Saunders, executive director of public infrastructure for the town, said a cost comparison analysis was done between relocating the building and demolishing it. Relocation would have cost twice as much, he said.
According to a staff report, relocation of the building would have cost about $14,045 plus HST, while demolition of the building was expected to cost $9,600 plus HST. Council chose the latter option.
Saunders also noted that building’s condition was less than perfect.
“The log portion of the building was built in the ‘80s, so it wasn’t a heritage structure or anything that was determined to have any historical or heritage significance,” said Saunders. “And the build itself had some issues with regard to its state.”
The cabin had sat empty for some time as neither the police nor Muskoka Victims’ Services used the building any longer, he said.
Issues concerning plumbing have also been raised in the past.
Work crews demolished and removed the cabin within a day. Saunders said the crews would try to level the ground as best as they could now given winter conditions.
In the spring, staff would smooth the area, seed the ground and “do some beautification to remediate the park as a park,” he said.