Lethbridge's safe consumption site opening delayed

By Lara Fominoff @LaraFominoff on Twitter
January 12, 2018 - 11:12am

LETHBRIDGE -  Lethbridge's new safe consumption site was originally expected to be completed early January, and open to the public in early February 2018.

But because of some unique challenges renovating the former Pulse Nightclub on 1 Avenue South, construction is taking longer than expected, according to ARCHES Managing Director Jill Manning.

"They're working on the supervised consumption half of the building prior to doing the office space, just because that's our priority and we at least want to get that up and running, even if it takes a while for the other side of the building with the office staff to move over."

Manning explains that because Lethbridge will house North America's first safe inhalation site -  along with booths for injection, snorting and taking pills -  they've come across issues that weren't anticipated.

"It's a bit of a guessing game and trial and error and you know, being creative when it comes to our plans and our contractors and all of that."

And she emphasizes that when anything new is built and/or renovated, often it takes longer than expected.

"The things that we knew were needed, have never been made before," Manning says. "What works, what doesn't work, how we can ventilate, that kind of thing."

So far, the project is on budget, and once completed, Health Canada will have to inspect the building to make sure it meets all occupational health and safety codes.

Renovations are now expected to be completed by late February or early March.  

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