Cornwall General Hospital Sold to Ottawa Developers – Did Cornwall Fail? 11th Councilor by Jamie Gilcig

jg2CORNWALL Ontario – When politics take over principles we all lose.   Today it was 2nd Hospitalannounced that the Cornwall General Hospital site was sold to developers in Ottawa for $2M.     We have not confirmed that number as the Hospital has not sent us a release.

Sadly politics doomed a much needed facility for our community.   The uses for this wonderful building could be many; and the new owners will be put it to good use, but will it help Cornwall and the people of Cornwall who donated so much and ultimately paid the bill?

Through a myriad of levels of government the hospital’s fate was sealed.   A last minute attempt by Mark A MacDonald was an utter failure as Mr. MacDonald appeared to be more concerned in using the hospital to further his own political aspirations than to actually saving the facility as one supporter after another drifted away due to a lack of organization and results.

The first meeting to save the hospital drew over 100 people including our MPP (who also defeated Mr. MacDonald) and a few city Councilors.   Subsequently poorly planned and notified meetings seemed to be focused on the mythical Concerned Citizens Coalition headed by Mr. MacDonald and a high school student.

Mayor Kilger responded to Mr. MacDonald’s efforts (they ran against each other in the last election) by calling, along with council, to create a committee that we have yet to see record of or hear mention of ever meeting.

The local initiative connected to Dr. Dany Tombler also was said to have fallen through while the entire process was shrouded in unnecessary darkness.   After all; it is a public facility.

While many people supported saving the hospital for the community the simple fact is that people did not work together or come together.   The big stake holders lay down after Mayor Kilger stated he was not convinced saving the hospital was a good idea.   (compared to chem tanks on the harbour front?)

As Chantal Leclerc mentions in the video below there is no place for extra long term beds right now in the community other than the Cornwall General facility.

The big questions coming down the road is who pushed the buttons and why?   How was Cornwall helped by dumping this facility?

At the end of the day is this simply another example of our community being let down by poor leadership?   Will the $2 million dollars the hospital receives for this facility even compare to the cost of having to build in the future?  I think not.

What do you think Cornwall?  You can post your comments below.

cam tow


  1. It seems like all hope for Cornwall is lost
    Looking at two big local issues the Tanks at the Harbor and this sale of the Hospital seems to prove nobody can get organized or care enough to join hands and block all the behind closed door deals
    Everybody seems to be looking out for their own interests
    On another troubling front you have the name of Editor of Seaway News appearing on a boycott facebook page that often includes vulgar jokes no matter how you feel about their cause it doesn’t seem to help anybody.Nobody seems in charge of the comment section. If they or the xfiles knew history they would know the editor here (JG) would not post as the nazi propaganda minister(JG) sorry it make NO sense
    I really hope we don’t learn later that this building was sold to a friend of a friend

    SN comments
    Joeseph Gobells
    March 22, 2014 – 21:19

    Should the Editor of a news organization be part of a facebook boycott group?? Seems like a conflict of interest most News Organizations striving for excellence would avoid at all costs

    March 22, 2014 – 19:11

    “In short, I’m an idiot.”
    Mr Editor I have to agree Allowing your name to be posted as a member of a “strange facebook site” seemly devoted to silly grade school fight with one of the worst bloggers in Canada would make Edward R Murrow roll over in his grave

  2. Author

    Is this what you’re referencing? Todd Lihou and his wife who works for Denis Thibault in the hate group? Todd Lihou in Hate Group

  3. Author

    This is who Ms Hart and apparently Mr. Lihou and his fair lady wife support. The founder of the defunct boycott group pulled down for hate symbols (anti-semitic ones at that) and founder of the new group. dorkery

  4. Who bought the Hospital?

  5. Author

    That hasn’t been released yet Hailey. The hospital is being super secret agent like.

  6. I came on just a while ago and saw the shock about the sale of the former CGH was sold to an Ottawa Developer. OHM the General will be no more and will be turned into a high end facility for the rich and the regular people will be out in the cold if something isn’t done to turn things around. I am busy cleaning my sons’s pigstye of a room and came across an old picture of the old CGH when I was a child as well as a picture of the old bridge in Cornwall as well as the old Hotel Dieu which is now the St. Joseph’s Villa. I don’t know where my son got those pictures. It is going to take me some days to fix that room and put things away neatly in boxes if I live that long. LOL LOL. I myself might need that facility when I get through with that job. This is a huge problem that is vitally needed is to have those seniors homes and some people are living longer and it is going to be more of a crisis when we boomers hit those ages.

  7. Dr Tombler and the other Doctors who were interested in buying the hospital but one of the major investors among them dropped out so it fell through.. And it is too bad as these Docs had no plans of making Private clinics as they said. “Not appropriate for Cornwall.. Now what the folks from Ottawa will do well we will mast have to wait and see.

  8. Yes, the sale of the General Hospital site will help the citizens of Cornwall. The site has been sold to developers of long-term care facilities. However, long-term care needs for each area are determined by the province, not the property owner. As of now Cornwall and area have been determined to have an adequate amount of LTC beds. Is it accurate? Who knows. I doubt that provincial numbers in any provincial program ever match community needs. For all we know they could decide to build / renovate the site for retirement residences, which are not regulated as to how many each area can have. We could even see it turned into what the community group wanted, a mixture of long-term care, retirement residences, doctor’s / professional offices, etc.

    In regard to the city council not being involved in the sale that is the way it should have been. This was a sale by the CCH, NOT the city of Cornwall. I believe if the community group had been successful then the city administrators would have helped in any that they could have legally.

    In regard to Mark MacDonald’s attempt to create a community group to buy the hospital site it was a good effort, but failed on numerous levels. Failing to get the community involved as a whole can be seen as the community not wanting to get involved in this. Mark MacDonald’s suggestion that the CCH sell it to the community for $1 and the province picking up the rest of the sale price was another reason for failure. Mark should have known the province would never go for this. The CCH has to divest itself of the general site by the end of 2014 as no funding will be provided after then to operate that site. As well, even if the community group had been created and was able to buy the site what were they going to use for re-development / renovations? Were they going to hope for the lottery fairy to grace them with a $50 – $100 million “gift?”

    It’s better that the site was sold to a developer that will redevelop / renovate the site. It could have been sold to someone who would have torn down the hospital and built condos / apartments / row housing. The sale is not perfect. But what in life is ever perfect? This is an opportunity for the citizens of Cornwall to hopefully influence how the site is redeveloped / renovated.

  9. You read my message exactly right Mr Jamie
    I don’t want to take sides or get on a hate list but having real professional journalists as my friend(Peter) come to realize if you are going to report on a subject having your name on such a list destroys your credibility. Looking over that site yesterday it shocked my faith seeing all the vulgarity posted


  10. Jules…shocked? We’ve known for quite a while that the site was for sale, so it shouldn’t shock anyone.

    Jules there you go again jumping to conclusions. There has been no indication that the site will be turned into a high end facility or for that matter anything right now. Even if it’s turned into retirement residences the price will probably run starting at $1500+. That’s not exactly high end, but not exactly affordable by everyone either. My mother was in one in Ottawa. She had a what they called a suite, to me it was more like a bachelor apartment. She was paying $2500 – $2700, all services included.

    If you’re as old as you say you are I think it’s time for you to stop cleaning your son’s room and let him do it. Sooner or later he’ll get tired of the mess and will clean it himself. As well, he’s old enough to do that himself. The only reason he doesn’t clean it is because you clean it.

  11. Ok then (moderated)
    If attacked again from Toronto i know the subject matter to push back that will set him off
    its just too easy
    I never asked for this!!!!

  12. Author

    Then let it go Claudette.

  13. @ Claudette MacIntosh…why even go to that site?

  14. jamie who is the guy in the picture?

  15. Hugger I just came back a few minutes ago and it will take me days to sort things out. I should have called the garbage truck to come. LOL LOL. I have been after that crazy monkey for a mighty long time and no go so his old lady had to do it and I am far from finished. Before that I did my floors (washed them).

    About the former General Hospital that would be great turned into a place for the elderly which is mighty needed – the way I feel just now I am just about there. Honestly Cornwall is being turned into a town for the elderly and having such a place is crucial. You are right Hugger about the high cost of elderly care here in Ottawa and it is unaffordable and only for the rich. It is bad enough in Cornwall.

  16. Jamie I don’t go on Facebook at all nor most places on the net but what I read from Claudette MacIntosh it must be bad. Jamie you are a decent fellow and not one who will go on hate groups or any such garbage. I like and respect you and so do other people and we don’t want to see a nice gentleman on such trashy sites. Don’t lower yourself to the level of the scum. You have an image to obtain and not lower your standards. I haven’t read anything nor will I go to such a place and this isn’t what you are all about.

  17. honestly jules we came here when the seaway was being built cornwall had its moments bad and good its my home bad or good i will die here

  18. Mr. Editor,,,,,

    Excellent comments “Hugger” regarding the GENERAL. Hopefully, God willing, this new developer from Ottawa, will require site plans, all pertinent provincial , municipal permits, etc, etc. ? After, the latest fiasco regarding the tanks on our waterfront, we the Public should scrutinize absolutely everything that this bunch (Council) touches ? By all means, I fully comprehend that this sale, was not a City transaction, but orchestrated by the CCH Board, however, now the developer must obviously deal with the City. Let us make it 100% crystal , crystal clear, that we won’t be “bamboozled” like we were with the “Waterfront Tanks” , that our Mayor & Council knew nothing about ? (I’m still laughing about that one)
    I will reserve final judgement, until further details emerge, but hopefully, this site will not be turned into “moonscape 2” which was the old Domtar site. The City has done zilch to pressure that issue ? It is a disgusting embarrassment !

  19. strategic planning by the buyers, add it all up. worst weather, most distasteful time of the year, miserable and cold. those effected most by the sale are highly susceptable to the elements. the elderly do not fair well in the weather we have been experiencing, good reason for poor attendance at the meeting!!!!
    what better time for the conclusion of the sale?
    on a positive note at least its an ontario firm that made the purchase
    what they do with it will be their decision, but it will be influenced by our cities residents i am sure…

  20. Fern I was born and raised in Cornwall and I left because there was nothing left there at all and I could see the people going down hill for a number of years. Good for you that you intend to stay in Cornwall but I don’t. I don’t like those Facebook pages at all. I was on Facebook a few or more years back and one lady who was really nice and helpful on one site that I used to go on with others became very evil. I was away from the site for at least a few years and someone on Facebook that I used to like told me about her and she lashed out at me even though I never commented anything evil since I never followed the garbage that she was dishing out at others. I said I had it and don’t need that kind of torment at all. It is mighty childish and scum bags at the lowest level who will hurt another person on line and people that they don’t even know personally. This woman was also the moderator of the site where we used to go and everything was great. I had no time for craziness and my day is full with housework, cooking, shopping, etc.

    Jamie is a very good man and I would like to see him gain the trust of the people and have respect for himself and he is a good gentleman. Many people left Cornwall for very good reasons Fern and I had mine as well. It isn’t easy going somewhere else but I did it and so did many other people. One more thing is that it takes the community to come together to make things happen and if they don’t come together and get involved in the meetings, etc. then Bare Ass and his gang of thugs will continue to pull the wool over your eyes and be up to their dirty tricks and say that they knew nothing about it when all the time they did know.

  21. Hugger I check out all sites trying to keep informed..or find out the site is garbage and so I don’t have to ask the nice question Fern asked…who is that crazy guy in the photo…enough said
    Same reason i will sometimes put on my crash helmet and watch Fox News
    Last night Bill oreilly was boasting he was the only newsman in the world to get the Plane story right
    He railed again CNN going wall to wall on the story all the while his conservative buddy Sean Hannity had on a retired Lt General of the United States Army that claimed secret sources had told him the plane had landed in Pakistan and was going to be outfitted for another Sept 11th type attack
    Its scary how OReilly thinks he is God and scarier yet that this General might have had his hand near the nuclear trigger at some point of his
    But closer to home..its scary how everything in this town seems to happen out of the public view

    Mr Jamie..LOL i will let it go– if you will never bring up the wacko in the photo u posted OK???

  22. The hospital did the right thing by selling the old hospital. As its spokespersons have repeated many times, CCH is in the business of acute care, not long-term care, and already faces the issue that many community hospitals have: too many beds taken by people who would be better cared for in a non-hospital setting. The elderly, when stuck in hospital beds, decline rapidly, often with no hope of ever returning home to “age in place.”

    But there are other issues for Cornwall and its taxpayers relative to the sale of the former hospital site.

    Why should the municipality be in the LTC business (Glen-Stor-Dun) at all, when the land GSDL presently sits on is prime waterfront that could be developed so as to increase the city’s the tax base and get a handle on minimizing inevitable tax rate increases.

    If the new owner of the former hospital were to build a combo facility (Assisted Living + LTC ) and absorb GSDL the city would be free to plan for the future with one of the hottest properties within city limits. And at the same time, start making Cornwall an “age friendly city” where people will have access to the kinds of services that could be provided at home for improved quality of life. That scenario would also provide jobs and room for entrepreneurs to create unique services.

  23. Maybe Todd Lihou joined the hate site to observe the phenomenon of a real live mob in action. He is in the news business, after all. And the haters are making news with every post they make. I visit the site regularly. Perhaps more people should. It’s horrible, disgusting, and frightening that any person in the community could be made the target of “real time” violence and dehumanization. Even people who may not like CFN should recognize that what’s happening in the community – relative to angry mob site – should not be tolerated under any circumstances. As far as Tammy Hart’s involvement goes, she’s made very serious and personal mistakes. Maybe she will apologize for her mistakes (we can all make them) and/or remove herself from a public service position that requires ethical leadership.

  24. @ Mary Anne Pankhurst….agreed. CCH is acute care, not long term care. So, no chance CCH was going to get into the LTC business. My mom was in the QCH for a month while waiting for a LTC bed. Seniors in hospitals waiting for LTC are a priority in the province.

    As for the city / municipality (Glengarry, Stormont & Dundas) being in the LTC business most cities, municipalities are. The city of Ottawa runs 4 LTC facilities. I think the cities, etc. see it as a necessary service.

    As for the new owner of the General site taking over GSDL I don’t see it. GSDL is a fairly up-to-date facility. And can you see the city, Glengarry, Stormont and Dundas actually agreeing on a sale AND moving everything to the General site?

  25. @ Hugger, good points. And you’re right, there is a few hundred year history of municipalities helping their elderly population and non-elders who need institutional care . But I also think in this century – because of unprecedented demographics – we need to consider new options that give consideration to the entire community. For example, a municipality could maintain a governance role (with the LTC facility) but enter a partnership for operations, while at the same time investing “age friendly” programs that help delay critical shortages LTC beds…and the growing expenses associated with running these facilities. Each municipality has different issues.

  26. Mary Anne Pankhurst you are a good lady and Facebook is not a place to get involved in. I was invited by a few of my quilting buddies to go on and it wasn’t long before I left. A woman that I used to like and admire including all of us found out how mighty bitter that she became and I was not the kind who would continue in such an environment. The people that I was with were from the US and one from Australia and we had common interests. Of all people this one lady who was one of the moderators changed completely from a very nice person to one of the worst. We don’t know what happened to her but she used to be a real sweetie of a person and always there to help and give good ideas. I no longer trust going anywhere anymore and do more reading. I love Jamie’s CFN but that is it. I do not read any other paper at all whatsoever. I like and respect Jamie but I guess that Jamie just wants to keep up with the garbage going around town. Cornwall is so mighty small that it isn’t hard to know the news. I used to have mom as my newspaper and radio but since she is dead there is no more news at hand going on in Cornwall. LOL LOL.

  27. @ Jules. My mom was a great news source also. We were lucky to have intelligent mothers.

    I can’t get off the topic of the hate site however. The people belittling Jamie are using FB like a gun. They seem not to realize they’re doing exactly what they say they’re against. Too many ironies. Too many redneck behaviours.

  28. Any idea when the developer’s plans for the site will be revealed?

  29. Any idea when the developer’s plans for the site will be revealed? The plans were supposed to be released in `weeks.` That was in March. We`re almost into September and no word yet on who bought the site or what their plans are.

  30. Any idea when the developer’s plans for the site will be revealed? The plans were supposed to be released in `weeks.` That was in March. We`re almost into the new year and still no word yet on who bought the site or what their plans are.

  31. Or at the very least can we find out who bought the property?

  32. It looks like preliminary plans have been revealed for the old General Hospital site. A 30,000 – 50,000 “clinic” is planned with “new” professionals, not taking any existing medical professionals away from existing offices in Cornwall. Some of the equipment, such as the former hospital’s operating and X-ray equipment, was kept as part of the agreement sale. The property (including the former clinic) building were purchased by Green Soldiers Inc., of Ottawa.

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