far back as there have been landlords to complain of slovenly
tenants who fail to pay their rent on time, there have been
disgruntled tenants to complain about the conditions they’re
forced to live under.
Lefebvre lives at the former Canadian Forces Base
(CFB) Falconbridge. She is worried derelict old buildings
pose serious safety risks.
party invariably feels they alone are the injured party, but
the truth is, conflicts are rarely as cut-and-dried as they
might first appear on the surface.
the case of tenants Shane and Melody Lefebvre.
by the promise of low rent, the couple decided to move into
Pine Ridge Developments, formerly Canadian Forces Base (CFB)
Falconbridge on Radar Road in Hanmer.
they first moved into the community about nine months ago,
they thought it would be a good, safe place to raise their
two children, Brett, 6, and Vanessa, 9.
was before they discovered a couple of derelict old buildings
on the site that, they felt, posed serious safety risks to
the children of the community.
are probably more kids around here than there are adults,”
Melody Lefebvre said.
they’re always out playing and riding their bikes...and they
can get into those buildings no problem. They’re (the buildings)
not boarded up or anything...well, you’ve seen them. It’s
an extremely dangerous environment for kids and the safety
of our kids is our
buildings to which she refers are the old CFB barracks and
the former mess hall.
behind an abandoned and boarded up church, the barracks are
indeed accessible to anyone with the curiosity to venture
inside. There is no fence surrounding the building, the first
floor windows, most of which are broken, are not boarded up,
and a door on the west end of the building has been wrenched
from its hinges. Shards of broken glass lay strewn about the
on the stairs leading to the second floor, there is more broken
glass, along with assorted other debris, including boards
with rusty nails jutting out of them. A long shadowy corridor
runs the length of the second floor. Large chunks of the ceiling
have collapsed in several places and hang suspended like a
row of guillotine blades waiting to fall. The walls of one
room are covered with graffiti.
Ridge Developments is registered under the name 1277937 Ontario
Ltd., a numbered company owned by Dr. Lloyd Kerry of Hanmer.
purchased the property for about $1.9 million in 1988.
said he wanted to tear the abandoned buildings down 15 years
ago, but maintains municipal officials didn’t want them torn
down because that would have meant a loss of tax revenue.
property is currently valued at $15 million, Kerry said.
you imagine?” he said. “And we get no services for the taxes
we pay. I haven’t taken money out of the place for years.
It’s a financial fiasco.”
a retired widower who suffers from poor health, said he would
walk away from the property tomorrow if someone offered him
$2 million for it.
back to the abandoned buildings, Kerry maintains hey were
boarded up as recently as last year. Kerry blames vandals
for the buildings’ current state of disrepair.
is the single most important problem that we have to deal
with,” he said.
begs to differ. That’s complete freakin’ malarkey,” she said.
Pine Ridge Developments maintenance worker Jeff Kozey agrees
never seen the barracks or the mess hall boarded up,” Kozey
said. “Not in the two years that I worked there.”
did, however, offer an opinion into why the buildings have
never been torn down.
of the buildings have asbestos board behind the walls,” he
another thing – Mel’s (Melody) house is full of mould, and
that’s a health hazard.”
Lefebvres’ problems don’t end there. They’ve been served with
an eviction notice from the property manager, allegedly for
not paying their rent.
produces a wad of rent receipts dating back to July 2002.
harassment, plain and simple,” she said. “They’re doing this
because I had the nerve to complain about conditions around
said she tried calling a number of different government agencies,
including the Property Standards Inspections office for the
Greater City of Sudbury, but to no avail.
Life contacted the Property Standards Inspections office and
spoke to Gil Lefebvre (no relation) about the derelict buildings
on the Pine Ridge Developments site.
said his office would be sending a couple of inspectors out
to visit the site in response to a property standards complaint
made by a concerned citizen, and, if need be, they would take
to Melody Lefebvre, city inspectors arrived at Pine Ridge
Developments April 25, inspected the derelict buildings, and
immediately set about boarding them up.
Standards Inspection officer Dave Rouse said Pine Ridge Developments
had been visited and the appropriate measures were being taken
to deal with the issue.