Open letter to Public Jean-Yves Duclos, Canada’s public services minister,
I understand you are proposing to build a new—or rebuild the old—residence of the prime minister (24 Sussex Drive) at a cost of between $40 million and $100 million.
In 1868, the Government of Canada bought Rideau Hall and it’s grounds for $82,000. This historic (building) is, apparently, in excellent condition.
1. The Government of Canada change the tenancy of this beautiful and historic building to become, in part, the official residence of the prime minister.
2. It could continue as the site of government state dinners and other formal events.
3. The governor general could easily reside in Rideau Cottage (the home of the current prime minister, which is on the grounds Rideau Hall.)
4. The heightened security necessary today would be much simpler with one site to secure rather than two.
5. Demolish 24 Sussex Drive and erect an affordable housing project on the site, or build a public park there, but don’t waste any money on a new home for the prime minister.
Treat the $40 million to $100 million saved as part of the Treasury Board’s $15 billion cost reduction plan.
Doug Waines, West Kelowna