Knox Presbyterian Church donated $2,000 to the multi-use path – part of the ice loop construction at Waterdown’s Memorial Park recently. From left, Bruce Nixon, the head of Knox’s Saturday breakfast, presents a cheque to Ward 15 councillor Judi Partridge, with Knox elder Brenda Marriott and Bestco Construction supervisor Fern Fulham. Thanks to mild weather, the project is progressing rapidly, says Partridge.
By Mac Christie
The Memorial Hall project will see an elevator installed in a tower next to the building.
An elevator will also be installed at the Carlisle arena, but as the funding was allocated through the federal government’s Canada 150 Fund, the project will not get underway until 2017.
At the broader city level, Partridge noted three issues will affect the area in the coming year: the ward boundary review, the area rating for transit and the LRT project.
“Those are the three kind of city-wide challenges, but they’re directly zeroing in on Ward 15 and Ward 14, simply because with that area rating transit, the mood around the table from the inner city folks and the Mountain folks…is that they think everybody should pay for transit, regardless of if you receive the service. Councillor Pasuta and I are particularly concerned about our rural residents – there are some councillors who think they should be paying as much for transit as everybody else in the city.”
Partridge noted levies in the city are calculated using an urban-rural tax formula.“The only thing area rated is transit,” she noted. “I’m very concerned about that, personally, and I think that’s going to be a huge challenge for us.”
Partridge said another local project that should be completed this year is the Memorial Park ice loop and walking path. “It’s going very well, because of the weather,” she said. “They’ve just been able to make great strides.”
Partridge added it also looks like the ice loop is going to come in under its $2.2-million budget. The city is covering $1.2 million and the Rotary Club of Waterdown is contributing $1 million to the 200-metre skating path and 2,200-square-foot facility that will provide storage for the refrigeration system and amenities for park users.
The only delay, said Partridge, are the chillers.
“They were supposed to be in in December and they’re not going to be in until the beginning of February,” she explained, noting that could impact the completion timeline.
Contractors are pushing ahead with other parts of the project, such as the warming centre, but the project will likely be slightly delayed.
“Instead of being done mid-January, as they were originally going to do, with the chillers coming in in December, it may be the end of February,” she said.
Partridge cautioned the completion could stretch into March, as some landscaping will need to be done to provide reasonable access to the facility.
She noted the city is also looking at installing crosswalks in at least 20 locations city-wide – including two in Waterdown..
The new crosswalks light up on both sides of the road when someone pushes a button, like the lights on an emergency vehicle.
“We haven’t definitively chosen, but the two areas that we’re looking at…one of the priority areas is Dundas Street around Pirelli. The other area that we’re looking at is Hamilton Street and John Street – that is particularly dangerous.”
She noted that Dundas Street from Hamilton Street to Riley Street is under study for traffic calming.
Partridge said Hamilton Street will be regraded and paved in the summer or fall of 2016. “I’m hoping that we can incorporate the new crosswalks into it,” she said.
She added Parkside Drive is already slated to get a new crosswalk near Cole Street, which was factored into the Parkside upgrades.
Memorial Hall elevator
The Memorial Hall elevator project, which will see a glass-enclosed exterior elevator installed at the site, is a bit ahead of schedule, Partridge said.
The project also includes restoring windows and doors, installing air conditioning and landscaping.
In addition, the building’s stone façade will be repointed, floors will be refinished and a wheelchair-accessible bathroom will be constructed.
The $1.2-million project, funded by a $600,000 Hamilton Future Fund grant and matched by development charges, is again benefitting from the warmer weather.
Partridge said the project is slated to be completed in April, with tenants expected to move back in in May.
The elevator project at the Carlisle arena is slated to be completed by June 30, 2017. The $275,000 project will see an elevator tower constructed to provide access to the second floor.
The project received $91,575 through the Canada 150 Fund, with the remaining amount to come through the 2016 city budget.
The elevator project is slated to break ground April 1, 2016.