Friday, 23 October 2015

Fixing Canada, Part I: 24 Sussex Drive

The new Prime Minister's mother, Margaret, told CBC news that the PM will not be moving into the notoriously decrepit and outrageously expensive to maintain official residence at 24 Sussex Drive. (Kady O'Malley, though, says no decision has been taken.)

Since we Canadians own the building, managed by the National Capital Commission (NCC), it has been irksome, to say the least, that former PM (ooh, that is sooo nice to type) was being an an asshole about facilitating needed repairs by moving out. (Bold mine.)
Stephen Harper is at odds with the Crown corporation that manages the prime minister’s official residence, saying there are no plans to renovate 24 Sussex Drive even as the National Capital Commission asserts anew the need for more than $10-million in repairs deemed “urgent” four years ago.

Mr. Harper’s office at the time said the prime minister would not vacate the property between then and the next election.
The NCC has a budget for this sort of thing.

But noooo. Wags suggest that Harper was afraid "we the landlords people" would change the locks on the building the second he vacated.

Well, now he has been booted out by his landlords.

On Twitter this morning, I suggested that we raze the sucker and hold a competition among Canadian architects to build something new and snazzy. The building is not architecturally important and, even though designated a National Heritage Site, is really not very historically important, serving as official residence since only 1951.

Acknowledging that this is not high on the long, long list of immediate priorities to fix Canada, I still think it would be fun, just for the RWNJ reaction to Trudeau taking it down.

Also, I love the symbolism of razing the house Harper wouldn't move out of.

Cooler heads prevailed and @CodieneC had a excellent idea.

Holmes is, of course, Mike Holmes, ace renovator and telly star.

And what an educational show it would be! Invite historians to tell stories of parties, negotiations, shenanigans. Architectural historians to discuss features of the building and antiques experts to talk about furniture and what-not.

A private-public partnership we could get behind. HGTV gets ad revenue, NCC gets the work done in a timely fashion, Canadians get edumacated.


Somebody pitch this to Holmes and HGTV. Or start a petition.


Pseudz said...

That's funny.

Perhaps it would be enough of a freebee 'boon' for Holmes and HGTV to accept negotiated terms in which they've also gotta alternate the reno of 24 Sussex Dr. with shows that display innovative provision of potable water on Canada's reserves and/or the building of social housing.

PPP is a creepy increment - I don't know how any particular instance could be gelded, but it should be.

deBeauxOs said...

Demolish the goddam decrepit squalid eyesore. Or dismantle it and plunk it down somewhere in Ottawa where it can be a tourist attraction.

Build a new residence on the same site after it's been thoroughly smudged and exorcised of its evil spirits.

Something ecologically efficient, state of the art everything with a maintenance and update schedule that will extend beyond this PM's term, and the one after that.

TheRolexMan said...

I phoned Holmes this evening. Hopefully I get a return call. I am putting up $1,000.00 of my own cash toward the endeavour. I invited all Canadians who give a shit to do the same, even $50.00 or $20.00 if it is all you can afford. Let's raise $30,000,000, forget about the $10,000,000.00. If we cannot raise 30million by the end of this year, to build a nice new place for next year, we may as well declare ourselves a third world country officially. Shit, even Haiti's leader lived in a palace among squalour outside. This is a disgrace and should piss off every real Canadian. Let that bitch in Buckingham Palace contribute $1.00 for every $1.00 we raise and stop sucking our blood, and give something back.

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