Almonte celebrates reopening of downtown following completion of revitalization project

Members of Mississippi Mills council and staff, along with members of the Thomas Cavanagh Construction Limited team, joined downtown business owners and the community to celebrate the revamped downtown core. – Photo submitted

After nearly two years of construction, the downtown Almonte revitalization project is complete.

The Municipality of Mississippi Mills, in partnership with Destination Almonte, showed off the revamped downtown core during the downtown Almonte reopening celebration on Saturday, Sept. 16. Members of council and staff, along with Kay, Lori and Cindy Cavanagh, and members of the Thomas Cavanagh Construction Limited team, joined together to celebrate with downtown business owners and the community. Mill Street was closed to traffic and visitors were invited to a Night Street Market featuring downtown businesses, live entertainment, children’s activities, prizes and a ribbon cutting.

“This downtown revitalization project is one of the biggest capital projects in recent history,” states Mayor Christa Lowry. “I am very pleased to share that not only was it completed on time, but below budget.”

This project has been in the works since 2011, to replace water and sewer pipes dating back to the 1930s. The end result includes 500 metres of new watermain, 400 metres of new sanitary sewers, and 300 metres of new storm sewers to ensure the continued delivery of clean, safe drinking water and improve drainage systems. A $750,000 Canada Community Revitalization Fund grant also lessens the impact of this project on taxpayer and water and sewer service ratepayers.

In addition to underground infrastructure, there are new sidewalks to meet accessibility standards; additional accessibility features such as tactile blister paving at intersections; traffic calming measures; heightened pedestrian safety; and fresh landscaping including 48 new trees, replacing the 14 previously in the downtown core. A Tourism Relief Fund grant also allowed for 11 benches, receptacles and bike racks throughout the main street.

“From design through construction, municipal staff have put an extraordinary amount of effort into this project,” says Mayor Lowry. “In particular, I’d like to acknowledge Cory Smith, public works director; Rob Smith, project manager; and the entire waterworks team for their great efforts over the length of this project. To our contractor, Thomas Cavanagh Construction Limited: Thank you for your hard work, professional attitude and for getting the job done on schedule and on budget.

“The biggest thank you is reserved for our downtown business community for your incredible patience and perseverance. Coming out of the pandemic and into a major construction project was not easy, but you weathered the construction and celebrated each milestone right along with us,” adds Mayor Lowry.

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