Charlottetown wants to turn old nursing home into green space

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Charlottetown wants to turn old nursing home into green space

The city of Charlottetown is optimistic the old Prince Edward Home property will be turned into green space and added onto the existing Victoria Park.

The city has been in discussions with the province, and Charlottetown's mayor Clifford Lee said he feels confident some kind of arrangement can be reached.

"I think it's a logical extension of the park," said Lee of the building, which has been vacant for almost two years.

"It would be a terrific gift from the province to the city."

'No interest' in development

The mayor is hopeful an agreement can be reached sometime in the next few months to see the area turned into a park. 

"We have no interest in seeing any development on that site," said Lee.

Lee said the city has no interest in the building and would expect the province to remove it. 

The mayor said he doesn't see sports fields or any major infrastructure going in. He described the land as an ideal spot for a passive park, not a major project. 

"It would be a beautiful area for benches and flowers, a passive recreation area for our older population,' said Lee. 

Parking problem in area

The province may use some of the land to address a chronic parking issue around the nearby provincial government offices. Provincial officials have said they may look at some of the property to help augment parking. 

Lee said using some of the land for parking was part of discussion between the city and the province. 

"There's an obvious parking problem," said Lee. "This presents a golden opportunity to deal with that issue of the parking problem but also to allow a substantial expansion of Victoria Park."

Province hasn't made decision

In a recent standing committee meeting on infrastructure and energy the minister of transportation, infrastructure and energy said the province has had ongoing discussions with the city about the property.

"We aren't at a stage yet where we have come to a conclusion on what is going to happen with the P.E. Home," said Paula Biggar.

"We are still in discussions with the city of Charlottetown as to where we can move forward on coming up with some options for that property," said Biggar.

The province couldn't say when a decision would be made, or when the building would be demolished and an agreement possibly signed. 

"We'll have some discussions in the immediate future with the province," said Lee.

The Mi'kmaq Confederacy of P.E.I. said it has not been part of any formal consultation in relation to the property, but said it has an interest in the property as well. 

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