Downtown Guelph is just a weeks away from getting more parking spaces. After months of construction efforts, and years of waiting, the new Market Parkade on Wilson Street will official open on October 26 with festivities fit for the whole family, along with the reveal of some City-sanctioned artwork.
The official ribbon-cutting of the new parkade, the new pedestrian bride over Norfolk, and re-opened access on Wilson Street will happen from 10 am to 2 pm on Saturday October 26 in Market Square. Ceremonies will be followed by live music, food, games, and other assorted family fun. On top of that, people will be able to use the new parkade free of charge in order to attend the event.
“The completion of this project represents a $22 million investment in core infrastructure and parking services for our thriving downtown core,” said Scott Stewart, chief administrative officer for the City of Guelph in a press release. “We’re excited to deliver on our promise to revitalize and grow downtown Guelph, and continue to support our amazing downtown businesses.”
The new parkade will feature 500 new parking spaces for cars, and accessible and secure stalls for bike parking. There are also electric vehicle charging stations, and the building will be Net Zero rated thanks to 500 solar panels installed on the roof generating almost 240,000 kilowatt hours per year. The design of the parkade won the City of the Guelph the Innovation in Parking Operations & Programs Award by the Canadian Parking Association earlier this week.
Along with the infrastructure, there will also be the revelation of new public art. A new permanent outdoor installation called “Sudden Garden” will be revealed featuring four polished bronze deer statures with simple architectural shapes meant to invoke Guelph landmarks of the past and present like the Basilica or Our Lady, and the old Carnegie Library. Robert Cram and Eldon Garnet created the work.
Also, the results of the Main Street mural project will be revealed. Pellvetica, Cheka Creative Inc., Kenneth Lavallee and Emmanuel Jarus were each selected to make a mural along Wilson street, which is a project funded by Ontario’s Main Street Revitalization Initiative, a program meant to support the revitalization of main street areas. The finished murals will also be revealed as part of the ribbon-cutting festivities.
While the official opening is on October 26, Market Parkade, Wilson Street and the Norfolk pedestrian bridge should all be re-open for parking and travel starting October 22.
Important safety tip, when Wilson Street re-opens, it will move in the opposite direction from the way it moved prior to construction when the street was closed off. Starting October 22, Wilson Street will exit on to Gordon/Norfolk instead of allowing entrance to Carden Street and the core from Gordon Street. Full details about the changes to traffic flow can be found here.