Demolition of historic Lethbridge, Alta., building delayed
Lethbridge council says a historic building in its Chinatown won't be demolished until concerned groups are given an adequate opportunity to save it.
The Manie Opera Society building was heavily damaged in January in the same fire that destroyed the historic Bow On Tong building.
A motion on Tuesday sought approval to demolish it, but members of the city's Chinese community in attendance said they haven't been consulted on the matter.
"We're very shocked that we didn't have any chance to talk to anybody, not to mention the owner of the building," said spokesperson Ying Zheng at Tuesday's meeting.
As a result, council voted 6-3 to give concerned parties two weeks to meet with the building's owner and search for a way to save it.
That doesn't mean that the Manie Opera Society building is guaranteed to remain standing.
"This does not prevent the owner from moving forward with fencing the site, preparing it for demolition, doing what they need to do, having the engineering down in order to have the building removed," said Coun. Jenn Schmidt-Rempel during the meeting.
"It does give our Chinese community an opportunity to speak with the building owner to see if there's anything further that could be done."
The Manie Opera Society was built in 1907.
Council is scheduled to meet again on June 13. If a solution is not agreed upon at that time, the demolition will proceed according to the owner's wishes.