AB Ellis under demolition order, Ecole St. Joseph has been sold

By Rosalind Russell – While one long-time school building will be demolished in Espanola, another school building has been sold.

Despite efforts of a local housing corporation, the Rainbow District School Board under an order of the Ministry of Education has begun the demolition process of AB Ellis Public School.

The original building was constructed and opened in 1919 with four major additions over the decades, but with no one to purchase it, demolition crews from Budget Demolition Incorporated out of Hamilton are now on site taking recyclable materials away and preparing it for the wrecking ball.

The Rainbow Community Non-Profit Housing Corporation has tried over the last five years to save the building and have it converted to 44 one- and- two-bedroom apartments but did not have the funds to

purchase the property.

Demolition is expected to be completed soon with plans for the vacant lot to be used for parking. 

Meanwhile, Ecole St. Joseph, which has been empty for a year has been sold. Conseil scolaire catholique Nouvelon communication director Paul de la Riva says a binding offer to purchase has been received and the transaction is scheduled to close in late December.

AB Ellis Public School students now share space with Espanola High while Ecole St. Joseph students are now housed in the new Ecole la Renaissance.

Photos: The process has begun to tear down AB Ellis Public School. A demolition crew from Hamilton is overseeing the takedown of the school, which was originally built in 1919. Photos by Rosalind Russell

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