Nicholas Pagonis: “We will rebuild our church!”

Panayitsa after fire003On Monday April 27th 2015, a special meeting of the HCGM Board of Directors was held at the Hellenic Community Centre Adrian Maris. The only topic of discussion was the rebuilding of Koimisis Tis Theotokou Church.

HCGM President Nicholas Pagonis informed the attendees as to the state of the building and the fact that the authorities have ruled out arson or criminal activity.

Following this, Antonis Beliotis, structural engineer, presented his findings. He gave a detailed description of the damages to the building and offered two options for the rebuilding process. The first option is to salvage the building, which would be an extremely difficult and much costlier undertaking. As well, this option would not offer any guarantees for the removal of the toxic substances embedded in the building materials. The second option would be to demolish the building and, given that the foundation can be retained, rebuild on the same footprint. Achilles Nikopoulos, mechanical engineer, added that “while the building’s shell is still standing, the entire interior is burnt.”

The President then motioned to demolish the burnt building and to rebuild on the existing foundations. “The good news is that the insurance coverage is $1,800,000 for the building and $1,060,000 for the content. A rough and preliminary estimate of the cost to rebuild is approximately $1,000,000. Of course there will be additional expenses as the works progress, however this does mean that no fundraising will be required for the reconstruction phase of the project” added President Pagonis.

The members of the Board of Directors voted unanimously in favour of the motion to rebuild Koimisis Tis Theotokou Church.