To get good insightful answers, how the question is framed matters. I missed an opportunity on Thursday
City Hall says multiple bidders are seeking to purchase 193 King Street East.This is a hopeful sign for a building that was a blight on the community and one of Hamilton’s most notorious addresses.
The City says it cannot reveal the number of bidders, or the amount of the bids. Spokesperson Ann Lamanes says staff are reviewing the bids.
Three years ago, attempts to find a use for the building were unsuccessful after the City Council pulled out of a plan to repurpose the building for public health offices. The building sat vacant afterwards with no immediate demand for the property.
Fast forward to today, and downtown buildings do not stay on the market for long.
Even 245 Catherine Street North – a contaminated property that has gone to tax sale multiple times – is attracting serious attention and offers. The City is planning a tax sale of the property in December and bidders are lining up for a chance to buy the property.
The building was seized by the provincial government in early 2006 under the ‘conspiracy’ section of the Civil Remedies Act, otherwise known as the Remedies for Organized Crime and Other Unlawful Activities Act – the first time the province used the conspiracy section which was enacted in 2001.
Known as the Sandbar Tavern, it was a notorious crack den that witnessed all sort of crime including two murders. The tavern closed in 1999 when its license was revoked by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission., The five apartments above the ground level bars became hot spots for crime with a murder in 2001 and another in 2003.
This ended in early 2006 as Ontario’s Attorney General Michael Bryant stood in front of the building declaring its seized.
Now we wait to see the contribution the building’s soon-to-be new owners will make to the revitalization of the International Village.