For immediate release
Monday, June 20, 2022
Next steps for the old Groves Hospital building
Fergus, ON…Hospital officials are closer to deciding on what will happen to the old Groves hospital building located at 235 Union Street East in Fergus.
The former hospital site, now referred to by hospital officials as “Legacy Groves,” has a long history. “We are required to follow the direction of Ontario Health (OH) and the Ministry of Health (MoH) regarding all plans for the Legacy site,” states Gilles Madore, Board Chair, Groves Memorial Community Hospital (GMCH). “A committee made up of members from the hospital board of directors, community members and hospital staff are working in partnership with the MoH and OH on decision making. All parties involved in these discussions acknowledge the huge benefits Dr. Groves has provided to the community with his land donation for medical purposes.”
“The Legacy Groves building requires extensive renovations to meet current standards for any other health care related service to operate,” states Angela Stanley, President and CEO, GMCH. “This would be too costly. We are working on a phased approach in helping us to decide about the use of land and the building. The MoH funding to operate the building stops on March 31, 2023. Demolition will need to take place shortly after the funding end date. The next logical step is to tear down the building unless the MoH indicates otherwise.”
“A decision about the future use of the property still needs to be made,” explains Madore. “GMCH will continue to work with the MoH to explore potential future uses of the land to deliver medical services that will continue to benefit the community and the Groves Hospital corporation. A phased plan for future use of land based on MoH needs, and the ability of the hospital to fund the plan while maintaining a balanced budget, will all need to be taken into consideration.”
Under a Memorandum of Understanding, first announced in June of 2021, GMCH retains ownership of Legacy Groves lands fronting on Union Street East, including parking lots, while the Township of Centre Wellington assumes ownership of the old Queen Street Medical building and current Guelph-Wellington Paramedic Service building on Queen Street East. Legal steps to formalize these transfers are complete.
“The old hospital site is currently being used as a COVID Assessment and Vaccine Centre,” remarks Stanley. “We have also had a few movie production companies rent the facility for short term use and allowed the OPP to use the building for training exercises.”
“Members of the public can submit any questions or feedback about Legacy Groves by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org” offers Madore. “Our hospital communication staff monitor this email and will reply to any feedback received.”