Windsor

Former Windsor jail for sale, bids accepted for 30 days

The former Windsor jail is for sale with a listing price of $1.

Infrastructure Ontario looking for 'the best value for the property'

The former Windsor jail has been listed on the open market for sale. (Aadel Haleem/CBC News)

The old Windsor jail is listed on sale for $1, but it's likely not going to go for that.

Buckingham Realty Windsor is managing the listing Sales representative Marty Pedersen said they're looking for proposals, but it will go to "a buyer with vision and some fairly deep pockets to do a conversion of some kind on it."

What's included with the sale of the 378 Brock St. location is the administration building adjacent to the former jail and the Mackenzie Hall parking lot.

The jail was built in 1924 after a fire destroyed the Essex County jail. Operations ceased in 2014 when the building was deemed to have reached the end of its life as a useful prison.

The entire property for sale is designated as the Sandwich Heritage Conservation District in 2012.

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      "Anybody who purchases this property would also assume those restrictions and required maintenance, and restrictions for what could be done to the property," said Ian McConachie,  spokesperson for Infrastructure Ontario (IO), which manages the property on behalf of the province.

      IO is looking for "the best value for the property" and won't be taking into consideration the potential buyers' proposals for the former jail when deciding on the winning bid.

      He said any plan would need to go through the city's zoning and approval process.

      Ward 2's councillor-elect Fabio Costante says there is some concern about the sale because the community has wanted it to be converted into a museum. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC)

      Key to Sandwich Towne history

      Ward 2 councillor-elect Fabio Costante said the sale raises some concern.

      He's heard from residents and community leaders who "tried really hard to fight for the jail to be converted into a museum."

      "The hope is that it's maintained for public use, ideally, a museum," he said, or something the public can benefit from.

      The City of Windsor took an interest in purchasing the property a while back, according to Costante, and he hopes they will continue to express that interest even though it's on the public market now.

      "It's right in the middle of Sandwich Towne, and it's really a key piece to the revitalization of Sandwich Towne's history and culture."

      IO is accepting bids for the next month, until Nov. 23.

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