County sells Arichat courthouse to local business operator

ARICHAT: The community’s historic courthouse has a new owner.

Richmond municipal councillors voted unanimously to approve the sale of the 171-year-old courthouse building to a private developer during the late stages of their most recent monthly council meeting.

According to a statement released by the county that evening, the decision came as a result of the municipality issuing a Request For Quotes (RFQ), which was described as offering Richmond officials “the opportunity to achieve an acceptable price while considering the most advantageous usage of the property.”

The building had not held provincial court hearings since early 2009 and lost its sole rent-paying tenant just over a year ago when the provincial government announced the closure of Arichat’s Land Registry office. However, the prospect of a business owner from the region taking control of the building drew hope from Isle Madame’s two municipal councillors in terms of the historic structure’s future.

“This benefits the community and business as a whole and I’m pleased that a local entrepreneur and businessman has stepped in to take on this community development initiative,” stated councillor Alvin Martell.

“Maintaining the façade of this building will clearly enhance the streetscape of the Arichat main street and provide economic value through new tax dollars and potential future community utilization,” added Deputy Warden James Goyetche.

The statement from the municipality did not name the courthouse’s new owner but confirmed that the buyer intends to redevelop the property “for economic and community use.”