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Town of Fort Macleod sells historic territorial courthouse to local investors

The Town of Fort Macleod reached an agreement with local investors on the sale of the former territorial courthouse built in 1902.

Four Fort Macleod families combined to buy the former territorial courthouse that previously housed the town office.

Council voted March 8 to accept a $225,000 offer from the group.

“Tonight is a night to celebrate,” Town of Fort Macleod chief administrative officer Sue Keenan said.

The sale was on the agenda of council’s meeting at the G.R. Davis Administration Building.

Council had discussed the offer in closed session prior to the open meeting.

Keenan said the offer to purchase represented the full price on the building and land.

The former territorial courthouse has been on the market for 2 1/2 years without selling.

Over the last few weeks the town stepped up its marketing efforts, with success.

“We ended up with a couple of pretty solid bids that came in,” Keenan said.

Keenan said four local families have combined to buy what she called “the grand lady of the Town of Fort Macleod.”

“I’m very much looking forward to seeing what they come up with,” Keenan said.

Keenan said the building will continue to be a public facility.

“Residents and visitors will have an opportunity to see her when she’s all renovated,” Keenan added.

The 2 1/2-storey brick building was built in 1902 as a courthouse by Patrick Navin using the designs of the chief architect for the federal department of public works.

It is the only one remaining from a series of buildings built across Alberta and Saskatchewan by the government of Canada.

It is also the only surviving building in Alberta that has served as a courthouse for both the territorial and provincial judicial systems.

The Town of Fort Macleod used the building as the Town Office from 1971-2018.

The building went on the market in 2018 after the Town of Fort Macleod moved into the G.R. Davis Administration Building.

“It is good news to see that building take ownership by someone who will invest,” Mayor Brent Feyter said. “We look forward to seeing that developed and look forward to working with the buyer.”