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The Hamilton Spectator
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Tuesday October 16, 2007
The Prime Minister's Office has no plans to build a government-controlled briefing room, which would supplant the current National Press Theatre.

A news report on Monday said a plan, with an estimated cost of $2 million, has been in the works since at least last year.

The Privy Council Office and the PMO have been working on the "special project for the PM, otherwise reffered (sic) as the Shoe Store Project," said the documents obtained by the Toronto Star under the Access to Information Act.

But Sandra Buckler, Prime Minister Stephen Harper's director of communications, told The Canadian Press "there are no plans to pursue'' such a centre.

Officials were to have renovated an old shoe store, located near the PMO and PCO in Langevin Block, "for the possible use of the PM."

The "dedicated press availability facility" is part of plans to "put in place robust physical and information security measures to protect the Prime Minister and Cabinet," stated one document obtained by the newspaper.

A spokeswoman from the Privy Council Office told CP that the exploratory project had been abandoned at an "early stage." She added that there are no other locations being scouted for a media facility. Continued...

No plans to pursue government media centre: PMO
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