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Jim Pattison's former waterfront home to be relocated and repurposed as counselling centre

The historical, yellow-shingled Ambleside home sold for $1.75
Gil Yaron, head of the non-profit Light House Sustainability Society, stands outside Jimmy Pattison's former West Vancouver waterfront home earlier this year. The house recently sold for $1.75 and will be relocated and repuposed as a counselling centre. | Paul McGrath / North Shore News

The former home of West Vancouver-raised tycoon Jim Pattison has officially been sold.

It marks the closing of a chapter for a building that has resided at Ambleside’s 1448 Argyle Ave. since the mid-70s, but not the shutting of the book completely – the sunny, beachfront abode is not done bringing warmth and comfort to the public just yet.

The District of West Vancouver announced on Wednesday the new owner will remove and store the yellow-shingled home until a fitting new location is found.

It will then be handed over to a charitable trust, which will restore the building to its original architectural period and reopen it as a centre that will provide bereavement counselling for residents of Metro Vancouver.

In a council meeting Monday evening, Mayor Mark Sager said there had been “a number of people” showing interest in purchasing the home, but the new owner had won by outbidding competitors with $1.75 to their dollar.

“This is an extremely wonderful outcome because the applicant plans to move the home by barge, and temporarily store it until a new location in Vancouver is prepared. There’ll be no cost of this move to the district,” he said.

The district put the home on the market in June for just $1, providing the successful bidder would salvage and move it themselves once purchased.

The home was bought from 94-year-old Pattison in January for just under $5.2 million, to make way for a project that would see a continuous public walkway and new park installed in its place along the Ambleside waterfront.

“The acquisition of that home gets us one house away from completing a plan that started back in the '60s to provide waterfront to all members of our community,” said Sager on Monday.

Pattison’s history with the home dates back to the 1950s, when he bought it while working as a car dealer to use as collateral in order to receive his first business loan.

Speaking to the North Shore News in January, Pattison said some of the best years of his life, “and I’ve had a lot of good ones,” had been within those four, waterfront walls.

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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