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24 What does Sussex’s annual maintenance cost include? That’s a $146,694 question

No one has lived in the prime minister’s office since 2015, but it’s still costly to keep the lights on in the crumbling building.

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For $146,000 you can buy a new Mercedes Benz EQS or keep the lights at 24 Sussex Drive on for about a year.

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The prime minister’s official residence has been vacant since the Harper family moved in in 2015. According to the State Capital Board, in a “critical” state, his two best options are to rebuild from top to bottom. ($36.6 million) or disassemble and replace ($40 million).

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The long wait times for decisions and the funding required to follow them are also proving costly.

First, utility and water costs alone for 24 Sussex have averaged over $200 per day over the past year. water is extra.

According to documents from the Access to Information Request, it cost $146,694.42 to keep the stuffy and crumbling structure operational for just over a year. The figures cover the period from late August 2021 to September 2022.

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why so expensive? For one thing, his three-story house of brick and stone is a high energy consumer at a time when the government is trying to take the lead in cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Taxpayers paid Hydro Ottawa $59,027 for electricity for the residence (and pool building) for the 12 months during this period, or an average of $161 per day. Bills ranged from his monthly low of $2,961 in September 2021 to his high of $7,650 in January 2022.

Don’t blame the central air conditioner. Individual rooms are cooled by window-mounted units.

Then there’s Enbridge’s gas bill, another $14,565 for the same period, or about $40 per day. Gas bills were over $2,000 a month in the middle of winter.

This brings the total energy cost to over $73,000. Next, add water and sewage charges. This averages about $600 every two months.

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The document also points out various minor maintenance cost issues. He needs $4,825 to replace the old lights after the lights start to spark and smoke. The head of the NCC has sent out a warning that this could lead to a large fire.

The pool building needed regular maintenance. Winning bid: $5,200.

Meanwhile, the NCC staff, as well as paid consultants, were extremely busy. They said he was paid $23,996 to inspect the integrity of the building and another $5,827 for material reduction. (The building contains asbestos.)

NCC officials would not comment on the new expense figures. A few weeks ago they wrote in an email: “Canada’s Official Residences 2021: Property Portfolio Condition Report found that years of chronic underfunding continue to degrade the condition of six primary residences and 49 secondary buildings.”

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Part of 24 Sussex is still used as office space by some staff of the Prime Minister’s Office.

Ottawa architect Thun Driessen blamed “years of confusion” on the structure’s current state, saying that the current cost of keeping it upright “replaces this patient on life support.” It is said that it is similar to “continue to put on the device”. Utilities cost him $150,000, he says, but nothing makes the place more energy efficient.

24 Sussex is not alone. Driessen said many Canadian countries have lost critical infrastructure. “Every bridge, every rec center and community center in this country faces a huge infrastructure deficit.”

The NCC says the six official residences together require $89 million worth of repairs. Meanwhile, in his three years from 2018 to 2021, he was able to spend $26 million in capital funds on all of them. And most of that money was his one-time allotment for the overhaul of a country retreat on Lake Harrington.

The nearby Rideau Cottage, on the grounds of Rideau Hall, is still the residence of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and has a new guard hut and security fence.

Driessen, meanwhile, wants to keep the current building at 24 Sussex. “Conservation and restoration are worth investing in,” he says, if they can serve a public function without being a residence.

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24 What does Sussex’s annual maintenance cost include? That’s a $146,694 question

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