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New bid from businessmen to redevelop hospital lands

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Journal Staff

City council was to consider a bid Monday from five local businessmen who want to clear the former Sarnia General Hospital lands and redeveloped them into new housing and medical and commercial buildings.

The proposal would see the derelict city-owned property sold to the group for $1,000, who would then be paid by the city incrementally in stages as the razing and redevelopment is completed.

If approved, the project could cost taxpayers at least $5.4 million, money that would come from reserves, tax increases or new debt.

The five proponents — Charles Dally, Alex Jongsma, Mark Lumley, Kenn Poore and Marty Raaymakers – are incorporated as GFIVE Inc.

The company proposes leveling the derelict hospital building at 220 Mitton St. and adjacent nursing residence at 327 George St. and replacing them with buildings for medical, residential and commercial use.

The land without buildings could be worth $1.75 million on the open market, but the cost of asbestos removal and demolition has been estimated at $8.8 million.

The same five investors entered into a legal agreement with the city in 2014 to purchase the land for $1,000 and redevelop it into a $15-million medical campus.

But council tabled a zoning application and that deal came unraveled in March of 2015.

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