Kamloops' Old Courthouse to get facelift

The city-owned heritage building at Seymour and First will get a new roof and other rehabilitation, courtesy about $500,000 in economic stimulus funding from the province.

The City of Kamloops is planning a roof replacement and interior and exterior rehabilitation of the historic Old Courthouse, downtown at Seymour Street and First Avenue.

The city recently received about a half-million dollars from the provincial government as part of economic stimulus funding during the pandemic, which will be used to conduct the work.

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Kamloops was among 68 communities to receive heritage infrastructure funding.

City of Kamloops culture manager Barb Berger said work will start this spring. She said exterior work will include repairing granite and stone as the Seymour Street side of the building is in poor condition. She said mortar is crumbling beneath the blocks.

In addition, the slate roof will be replaced. Inside the building, some of the dark fir wood will be refinished, particularly in high-traffic areas and down the staircase.

“I think that will give it a huge lift,” Berger said.

She said the work will be “restoration” so as to preserve the historical significance of the building.

The city purchased the red brick building in 2007. It is a designated heritage building and, as such, the city is required to abide by certain heritage building standards. The city has until 2023 under the grant program to complete the work.

The Kamloops Arts Council occupies the building and the group is not expected to be displaced as a result of the work.

The grant covers the entire scope of the planned work.

However, Berger, noted the city is also planning to restore stain glass windows in the building in the future, with some cracked due to age and others damaged due to vandalism. It is unclear when that work will be complete, but Berger said the city will be looking to install Plexiglass protectors to prevent future damage.

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