While construction on the Clock Tower Square downtown is coming along, a late start means it won’t be complete until spring. However, sidewalks in the area will be completed this year.
CAO Wayne Staudt updated council on the project at the Nov. 5 council meeting.
At the meeting, Coun. Diana J. Scott noted that the clock tower square project is beyond a simple redesign.
“I think some people think it’s just purely cosmetic, but it’s actually about a whole lot more than that,” Scott said. “So I just want to make sure that people know that we’re not spending our money there frivolously.”
A key part of the project was the water main replacement. Staudt noted that if the water main was not replaced at that time, then eventually the new concrete and landscaping would have to be dug up.
CAO Wayne Staudt said that Clock Tower Square was actually due to be replaced back when the city did 10th Avenue and Rotary Park with the grant received from the province.
“But we ran out of money,” Staudt explained. “So clock tower square never got completed at that time. I believe that was in 2010.”
The main sidewalk along Baker Street and adjoining businesses in the area will complete this year to minimize disturbances. It is the circular coloured stamped concrete and final landscaping that will be held off until the snow melts in the spring. Staudt said the project will finish on budget.
Mayor Wayne Stetski said there was some major infrastructure work required under the square.
“Of course it was interesting to see the condition of the infrastructure in the ground as the dirt came out and the pipes got exposed,” Stetski said.
Staudt said safety also drove the project.
“We’ve had a number of people trip and fall over there, and we’ve had claims regarding paving stones being uneven and decaying and the sidewalk area…” he said. “So it was as much a safety issue that we were starting to see with the way it was over there as it was anything aesthetic or appealing to the eye. It was a safety issue that really pushed us in that direction.”
Coun. Sharon Cross noted that while there are handicap parking spots there, there wasn’t a way to get onto the sidewalk. So that also was taken into account for the redesign.