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Fire-ravaged Fairwinds to be rebuilt

Published on

Cathy Dobson

Fairwinds Lodge will be rebuilt after a devastating fire Jan. 15, says a spokesperson for the retirement home’s management company.

Engineers and architects are still determining how much of the building requires reconstruction, says Nadia Daniell-Colarossi of Sienna Senior Living.

“During the reconstruction, the home will remain closed and it will be some time before we can open our doors again,” she said. 

An aerial view of Fairwinds Lodge in the wake of last months’s fire. Image courtesy Matthew Dochstader.

Daniell-Colarossi said it is too early to know when the home near the corner of Michigan and Murphy roads will be available for occupancy again and could not say if the entire three-wing building needs to be rebuilt.

The north wing was destroyed by fire during the night one month ago and all 120 residents were safely evacuated without a single injury. Many moved in with family, while others had temporary residence at a local hotel.

Daniell-Colarossi said everyone is now out of the hotel and has found more permanent housing. However, the 120 residents living at Fairwinds before the fire will be given priority to move back in after reconstruction if they choose.

We have communicated with residents that we will stay in touch and provide updates about the reconstruction,” she said. “Being a part of the incredible community in Sarnia is a source of pride, and we are grateful for the many partnerships we have throughout the city.”

The retirement home’s owner, Sabra Health Care REIT, is committed to the Sarnia community and to ensuring it remains here, Daniell-Colarossi added. 

Residents fled the fire without their belongings, many of them in their pyjamas. It has taken time to pack and move those belongings that could be salvaged from the centre and east wings of the building, she said.

“One of the biggest questions following the fire has been around next steps…We are pleased to share the commitment to rebuild.”

A report from the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office about the cause of the blaze has not been released yet. However, within days the fire was declared accidental. 


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