The City of Burnaby has bought the Firefighters’ Public House in Metrotown, marking the end of the pub and banquet hall and more than three decades of firefighter ownership.
The pub, banquet hall and conference centre, which closed its doors last month, was located at 6515 Bonsor Ave., next to the Metropolis at Metrotown mall.
The city has bought the property for $13.3 million, according to communications manager Chris Bryan.
“As a large property located adjacent to the Bonsor Recreation Centre in the heart of the Metrotown neighbourhood, this is an important strategic acquisition for the city as we plan future amenities in this area,” he wrote in an email. “At this time, the city has not designated any specific uses for this property, but is developing a plan for the short term that will likely include a combination of city staff office space and using the remaining space to accommodate other community needs and generate revenue.”
The property was owned by The Firefighters #314 Holding Society, an entity made up of active and retired Burnaby and Vancouver firefighters.
Originally dubbed the Firefighters’ Social and Athletic Club, the pub was initially established in 1990 as a private association for firefighters to socialize.
For three decades, the banquet hall has been an important venue for community events, including public forums, Burnaby Sports Hall of Fame banquets and political events – including retired firefighter Mike Hurley’s victory party when he was elected mayor in October 2018.
“Thank you to all the valued customers, guests and various people that have been part of this great opportunity,” states a recorded voice message.
The 13,112-square-foot property and three-storey building, built in 1989, declined in value between 2019 and 2020 from $8,514,000 to $8,154,000, according to BC Assessment.