Port Alberni city council wants to know what’s to become of the land at the existing Alberni District Secondary School.
City councillors agreed Monday to send a letter to School District 70 and Ministry of Education requesting a dialogue about the future of the 22 acres on Burde Street.
“I think they’ll want their money back on that pretty quick,” McRae said about the province. “I think you’ll see something happen.”
The existing ADSS property is part of a land swap with the city that was announced two years ago. The district get the Roger Street location for the new high school and the city relocated Seredick park baseball fields to Klitsa Field.
SD 70 announced it planned to sell the Burde Street property and put the profits towards the cost of the new high school.
The district is surprised that the city raised the issue and even more surprised at the notion that disposing of the land could be done quickly, secretary treasurer Jerry Linning said.
A comprehensive public consultation has to be carried out as part of the land disposal process, the results have to be assembled, and the education minister’s approval is required before any sale can take place.
The process can’t start until the old high school is vacated and the new one completely moved into, Linning said.
“We’ve been concentrating on building the new high school and afterward we can look at what can be done,” Linning said.
The district has had no contact with the ministry of education about the matter, he added.
The district had initially announced their intention to sell the property and signed a project agreement with the province stipulating such.
But a ministerial order issued afterward compelled the district to undertake public consultation and get ministerial approval.
“How this all plays out I can’t comment on until we get into the thick of it,” Linning said.
Edited for clarity.