Hamilton secures $3.6 million in federal funding for infrastructure and tourism projects – Hamilton
Half a dozen community infrastructure and tourism projects in Hamilton are receiving financial support from the federal government.
FedDev Ontario is investing more than $3.6 million in the restoration and revitalization of a number of local spaces, including the Hamilton Children’s Museum and Victoria and Beasley parks.
Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas MP and Minister of Public Services and Procurement Filomena Tassi made the announcement Friday at Tourism Hamilton’s head office in the Lister Block, where $492,682 in funding will fully cover the cost the creation of a mixed-use exhibition and programming space. called Visitor Experience Center to promote tourism and heritage of the city.
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The money will also be used to restore St. Mark’s Church at Bay and Hunter streets, which has lain dormant since it was acquired by the city in the 1990s – it will be turned into a space for cultural programming.
Mayor Fred Eisenberger says he is very pleased with the $450,000 that will go towards the expansion of the Hamilton Children’s Museum in Gage Park.
“We have invested money and resources in this facility to keep it healthy and safe,” he said.
“A few years ago we had structural problems in which the city made investments to keep the Children’s Museum in place. And this expansion, I think, not only promotes accessibility, but provides more usable space for the museum, which is very, very popular.
City Manager Janette Smith said the investment is directly in line with recommendations from the mayor’s task force on economic recovery.
“We have brought together many community leaders to help us determine the things we need to invest in and do to support the economic recovery of this city. And no surprise, one of them was tourism.
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She also said the pandemic has underscored how important it is to have inclusive and accessible places for Hamiltonians.
Here is a breakdown of the amount of each project and the overall cost of each project, along with an estimated completion date:
Visitor Experience Center at Lister Block
Federal funding of $492,682 will cover the total cost of the mixed-use exhibit and programming space, which is described as an « enhanced visitor gateway » to Hamilton’s tourism and heritage experiences. It will aim to provide programming opportunities for local creators and exhibition space for community groups. Renovations are expected to begin this winter and be completed in March 2023.
Restoration of Saint Mark’s Church
St. Mark’s Church at Bay and Hunter streets will be transformed into a space for cultural programming, with a restored interior, barrier-free entrances and facilities, and a community garden. The federal government is providing $750,000 through FedDev Ontario, $250,000 is from the Patrick J. McNally Charitable Foundation, and the total cost is estimated at $5.5 million. Construction was scheduled to begin in July and is expected to be completed by summer 2023.
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Hamilton Children’s Museum
The Hamilton Children’s Museum will receive a new addition to better accommodate the popularity of the Gage Park attraction, with additional program spaces, a large outdoor gathering space, barrier-free entrances and bathrooms, a children’s playground , two outdoor play areas on the patio and an elevator. The cost of the project is $4.3 million, with new funding from FedDev covering $450,000 of that amount. The city pays about a quarter of the total price with $938,800, while the rest of the cost is covered by the provincial and federal governments. Construction is expected to begin this fall and be completed in fall 2023.
Improvements to Beasley Park will see the creation of a pedestrianized urban plaza through the closure of the existing Kelly Street right-of-way and the construction of a new accessible pathway to connect to the park’s existing accessible network. LED lighting at pedestrian level will be installed, the decorative fountain will be renovated and new trees will be planted throughout the park. The total project cost is $1.2 million and FedDev funding covers $750,000. Construction will begin this fall and is expected to be completed in fall 2023.
Renovations to Victoria Park aim to emulate the old Crystal Palace which stood on the site from 1860 to 1891. Improvements will include replacing the spray boom, creating a new sun shelter, planting more trees, the addition of seats and the improvement of trail networks. The total project cost is $1.02 million and FedDev Ontario funding will cover $694,000. Work will begin this fall and should be completed in the summer of 2023.
Installation of touchless taps in leisure centers
This project involves installing new touchless faucets at 81 municipal facilities in Hamilton. The entire project is estimated at $650,300 and the new funding will cover $472,575. This work will begin this fall and should be completed in the winter of 2023.
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