The former Muskoka Regional Center property in Gravenhurst is one step closer to taking on a new life.
Mayor Paul Kelly recently provided the Town Council with an update on the status of the project.
The 74-acre property sits on a piece of prime real estate along the Lake Muskoka shoreline and is owned by the province.
The property was originally opened as the Muskoka Cottage Sanatorium in 1897. In 1960 the Province of Ontario transitioned the site to a housing and care facility for developmentally challenged individuals before it ultimately closed in 1994. It has stood vacant ever since.
Recently, the property was nearly sold to Maple Leaf Education System but the deal ultimately broke down in June of 2019
Kelly said senior staff from the town had recently met with the province to get a better understanding of some of the applicants who have come forward to potentially purchase the property. Kelly said the primary problem was a lack of information on the potential purchasers of the property.
Representatives from the District and Town of Gravenhurst have formed a committee to offer input on potential uses of the property but the final decision lies with the province.
Kelly confirmed that a number of different applicants stepped forward before the February 24, 2021 deadline but the information on their proposals was sparse.
Nonetheless Kelly did say some of the proposals appeared interesting but he couldn’t share the details at this time.
Kelly said the town sent the proposals back to the province and requested more information so they can make an informed decision.
“Stay tuned,” said mayor Kelly.
While the Town of Gravenhurst and District of Muskoka do not get a direct say, an evaluation committee has been formed with representatives from Gravenhurst and the district, who will be responsible for communicating their thoughts to Infrastructure Ontario.
Gravenhurst’s representatives consist of Mayor Paul Kelly, chief administrative officer Glen Davies, and director of community growth and development Scott Lucas. The district representatives are chair John Klinck, chief administrative officer Julie Stevens, and commissioner Samantha Hastings.
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