Sidney plans to proceed with the original sale agreement made with Fire Hall Developments Ltd. (FHD), the developer for the existing fire hall site and adjoining parking lot properties, on Sidney Avenue at Third Street.
On Jan. 22, council and FHD entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to explore a potential revision of the sale agreement based on a smaller scale development, which would lead to a lower purchase price. The MOU established a deadline of March 11 for the parties to reach an agreement. They acknowledged that the original Contract of Purchase and Sale would be honoured if no such agreement was made.
Council announced Monday (Feb. 25) that the two parties are too far apart on a renegotiated purchase price.
In 2018, the previous council selected Fire Hall Development to purchase the downtown properties, owned by Sidney council, at 9837 and 9821 Third Street and 2477 Sidney Avenue for approximately $9.9 million.
The previous council approved a development permit and development variance permit to develop the properties.
Sidney’s new council had asked the developer to consider reducing the scale and massing of the previously approved six-storey development, which necessitated the renegotiation of the purchase agreement.
During the renegotiation, the Town asked the developer to ensure better compliance with parking and loading bylaws. This referred to the required number of residential and commercial parking spaces attached to the new development.
Moreover, the developer had been asked to keep the existing public parking spaces as part of the venture.
The original proposal and land transaction will now continue as planned.