Guelph courthouse closed due to ‘HVAC concern’

In-person trials, preliminary hearings will be moved from Wyndham Street courthouse to Kitchener

GUELPH – Officials say the closure of the Wyndham Street courthouse here is related to “an HVAC concern” and not an employee testing positive for COVID-19 earlier in the week.

On Oct. 21 court operations manager Jacquie Rodden Yetman issued a letter to all court users explaining the temporary closure.

“There were elevated CO2 readings at 36 Wyndham St. S., Guelph, that warrant further investigation,” stated Rodden Yetman.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the courthouse is closed while the Ministry and Infrastructure Ontario investigate the concerns and remediate if required.

“The courthouse will only be reopened when it is confirmed safe to do so.”

She added the decision to close the building, which was made by the Ministry of the Attorney General’s Ministry Action Group, is not related to a positive COVID-19 case announced two days prior to the closure.

“This individual was not symptomatic while at work, but was advised to be tested after being exposed to a confirmed positive case,” Rodden Yetman stated in an Oct. 19 press release.

She explained the employee, “last in the building” on Oct. 15, “adhered to infection control protocols while in the courthouse, including physical distancing and wearing a face covering.”

The employee is now self-isolating and following the direction of medical professionals, Rodden Yetman added.

Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health “will be taking the necessary steps to reduce transmission, including contact tracing, and will proceed based on the specific circumstances this individual case,” she stated.

Rodden Yetman’s notice of the courthouse closure did not specifically identify a possible timeline for reopening.

“While the Guelph courthouse at 36 Wyndham St. South is closed, the ministry is working with justice participants to ensure court matters continue to be heard, virtually or at an alternate inperson location,” she stated.

The Wyndham Street courthouse voicemail states all in-person trials and preliminary hearings will be held in Kitchener.

All other criminal court proceedings will be held via Zoom or teleconference.