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Initiative Three Update
An update from Project Coordinator Kay de la Rond
The past several months have been very busy ones with Team meetings and meetings with mechanical, electrical, and structural engineers as well as with our architect, Anthony Cameron, and various municipal and provincial representatives. A great deal of useful professional information has been gathered that will be helpful to Knox (e.g. present water supply from 6th Ave. is not adequate to supply water for a fire suppression system in the lower level as required by the building code, asbestos inspection indicated evidence of asbestos in parts of the Annex flooring, etc.) The asbestos report included inspection of the historic church lower level kitchen and NO asbestos was found. The groundwork has been completed and Knox has received the necessary building permit in order to proceed with the plans as submitted. Following receipt of the building permit three companies were contacted for bids on the work for which Knox would be responsible. The budget, approved by Council, was $500,000 ($200,000 grant from The Calgary Foundation, $105,000 grant from The Knox Foundation, $195,000 from Knox’s loan from The Calgary Foundation.) The three bids were all in the neighbourhood of $800,000. There are explanations for why the estimates are so much higher than budgeted. Under the terms of the grant from The Calgary Foundation the project was to be completed by December 31st, 2018 and a final report submitted.
In September we were advised that "Effective September 20th, 2018 Abe Brown, Executive Director of Inn From The Cold Society, is no longer with the Inn and will be pursuing other opportunities.” Louise Gallagher, formerly in charge of communications, was appointed Interim Executive Director. One of her first decisions was to engage a realtor to explore other space options for the proposed child care centre. Andrew Fox and I met with their realtor at Knox on September 25th when he visited the space under consideration, but despite several follow ups no information was received either from IFTC or from the realtor.
Last week Greg and I met with Louise Gallagher, Amanda St. Laurent (Director of Programs), and Hsiu-Yan Chan, Chair of the Board of Directors at which time the following decisions were communicated to us:
1) Inn From the Cold (IFTC) has found less expensive space in the downtown core and expects to begin operating the child care centre from that location in January, 2019.
2) There is a major shift in the approach to sheltering IFTC clients with a greater emphasis being placed on housing first. IFTC already has Journey House I and Journey House II and there are also arrangements with several landlords for subsidized housing. The lease for the overflow shelter at Knox expires March 31st, 2019 and will not be renewed. These, of course, are not the outcomes that we had hoped for but the Team will continue searching for a suitable partner(s) for the Annex.
The Calgary Foundation has been advised of the developments and has graciously agreed to extend the grant period to December 31st, 2019. The project will be put on hold while we determine whether or not it should go ahead, and if so where the additional funds might come from.
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