CBC you later! TV building coming down to make way for Halifax hospital expansion

The Nova Scotia government has issued a tender to demolish the historic CBC building on Bell Road that has hosted popular national television programs like Don Messer's Jubilee, Street Cents and This Hour Has 22 Minutes.

According to tender documents posted Tuesday, the company chosen to demolish the building can begin their work April 1. This means that 22 Minutes, which records in the building's studio, must move out by March 31.

Stantec Consulting Limited conducted an extensive survey of the more than 63-year-old building to determine what hazardous materials might be present. The company's findings make up the bulk of the tender documents.

Investigators examined almost every nook and cranny of the five-storey, almost 60,000 square-foot building and discovered, among other things, "asbestos-containing materials, lead-containing paint, mercury-containing equipment, PCB-containing equipment and bird droppings."

The tender, which closes Feb. 6, says the successful bidder must remove and dispose of the material deemed hazardous in accordance with established regulations. Last year, the province said it had set aside $1.6 million for demolishing the building.

Catharine Tunney/CBC

In 2014, CBC Television, CBC Radio and CBC online moved to Chebucto Road in a renovated space that was formerly home to the Bay department store.

The provincial government bought the Bell Road building and land from CBC in November 2017 for $4.5 million.

Removing the CBC building will allow for expansion of the Queen Elizabeth Health Sciences Centre, which is located next door.

A news release from the province said the new building will include:

  • A dialysis unit.
  • Diagnostic imaging suites (X-rays, ultrasounds and CT scans).
  • A new home for the eye-care centre.
  • Heart health clinics and cardiology services, such as stress testing and electrocardiograms.
  • Endoscopies, ear, nose and throat procedures.
  • Blood transfusions and drug therapy.
  • Orthopedics, plastic surgery, urology and oral surgery clinics.

The work is part of the $2-billion Queen Elizabeth II hospital system's redevelopment. The project includes an outpatient centre to be built in the Bayers Lake Business Park, as well as expansions at the Dartmouth General Hospital and the Hants Community Hospital.

The project will ultimately make way for the closure of aging and decrepit buildings on the Victoria General site.