It's a building truly worthy of its heritage designation, but the London Normal School has been sitting empty for nearly a decade and heritage activists are anxious to see it find a new tenant before it's too late.

Thousands turned out to Wortley Village's annual Gathering on the Green on Saturday, but for almost a decade they've had the blues.

That's because the 115 year old red brick elephant in the room.

"Now there's a plan in place and we just need to make sure the plan gets implemented as proposed," says George Sinclair with the Old South Community Organization.

The London Normal School is truly unique structure, one of only three built as teacher training schools in the late 1880s, when the London District Catholic School Board stopped using it as their headquarters in 2005.

It fell back into the hands of the province and faced an uncertain future.

Now there's optimism the building will be saved.

Council has agreed to earmark enough money to acquire the building from the province and to bring it up to code. So the money issue has been dealt with," says Sinclair.

A tenant is also lined up to move in.

The YMCA is poised to turn the building into a Centre of Excellence for Children and Youth, but the community won't rest until the deal is done between the city and the province.

Heritage planner Don Menard says the designation will go to council in the coming weeks.

Menard says designations like this actually help make the city more attractive for both families and companies looking to settle here.

"A city has to make itself unique and I think London is in a great position," says Menard.