As the government develops plans for the future of 24 Sussex Drive, Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre says fixing or replacing the dilapidated and unoccupied official residence would be the last item on his agenda if he was prime minister.
Poilievre, who currently resides in the taxpayer-funded official residence Stornoway, told reporters Tuesday that plans for the place that right now only rodents call home, would be near, if not at the bottom of his priority list.
“We don’t need a new home for the prime minister, we need a new home for working class Canadians,” he said, accusing Trudeau of being too focused on “building mansions for himself,” citing past renovations done to the secondary prime ministerial property Harrington Lake.
What to do with 24 Sussex Drive is back in the news following a report confirmed by CTV News that the federal government was considering abandoning the building as the prime minister’s official residence and building something bigger and more secure on another plot of land in the nation’s capital.
Public Services and Procurement Minister Jean-Yves Duclos’ office would not confirm to CTV News that this is a plan being considered, but in a statement, said they “continue to work closely with the National Capital Commission to develop a plan for the future of 24 Sussex Drive.”
This spring, Duclos’ predecessor in the portfolio told a committee of MPs that the federal government would unveil its plans for the future of the 155-year-old residence by the fall.
The 34-room, 10,000-square-foot mansion has sat empty since former prime minister Stephen Harper and his family moved out of what then was already a house in need of major repairs, following his 2015 election defeat.
Trudeau and his family opted to move into what he has called the “smaller but better” Rideau Cottage