Guelph, Ont., August 10, 2021 – The Downtown Guelph Project, a multi-year construction project to replace and improve downtown’s aging infrastructure, will become familiar to many business owners, residents and visitors over the next few years.
“Replacing and improving downtown infrastructure is a fundamental component of Guelph’s sustainable City-building vision as reflected in our strategic plan,” explains Jayne Holmes, the City’s deputy chief administrative officer of Infrastructure, Development and Enterprise Services.
The project will begin with two environmental assessments (EA); one will consider reducing the number of lanes on Wyndham Street from four to two as outlined in the 2014 Streetscape Manual, and the other EA will examine the Macdonell Street Bridge and Allan Dam structures across the Speed River to determine improvements and the preferred solution for each.
“This significant infrastructure investment will make our vibrant downtown resilient for years to come by replacing aging infrastructure and preparing for new growth with updated streetscape features creating an even greater work, live and play destination for businesses, residents and visitors,” adds Holmes.
Over the next two years, the City will look at the existing infrastructure and the future needs of downtown, and plan what needs to be replaced and updated below and above the surface—and when. Design for downtown will start in 2023, with construction starting as early as 2024.
“Downtown Guelph is a vibrant destination with many shops, restaurants and activities for residents and visitors alike,” says Reg Russwurm, manager of Design and Construction. “We’re going to start construction downtown to support existing and future users and maintain our critical infrastructure…but not quite yet. We have a lot of work to do before we put shovels into the ground.”
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Managing the construction impacts of this important capital project will involve robust and ongoing engagement with downtown businesses, property owners, downtown residents and citizens across the city.
“We know there is a lot happening in the downtown core over the next several years and the City is committed to listening to business owners and residents before we start construction to help ensure the downtown remains accessible and open for business during construction,” adds Russwurm.
The project will include many engagement opportunities for all downtown users over the next few years.
The Downtown Guelph Project aligns with the City’s Downtown Secondary Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Urban Design Manual and Downtown Streetscape Manual. The plan also helps achieve the City’s Guelph. Future Ready. strategic plan priorities of Building our Future and Navigating our Future.
Construction planning and phasing for the Downtown Guelph Project will coordinate with the Baker District redevelopment to minimize impacts to downtown businesses, residents and visitors.
Reg Russwurm, Manager of Design and Construction
Engineering and Transportation Services
City of Guelph
519-822-1260 extension 2765