The long awaited and state of the art Quinte West Consolidated Public Works Facility is officially open.
At a grand opening ceremony held on Wednesday, Mayor Jim Harrison cut the ribbon on the $22.5 million building located at 177 North Murray Street in the Industrial Park. Coming in $500,000 under budget, the 100,000 square foot facility will be home to over 120 staff. With a design based on LEEd principals from RDH architects, Aquicon Construction built the new works centre that features a 10 bay vehicle storage area, wash-bay facility for all of the equipment, staff amenity areas, sand/salt structure, refueling depot and outdoor storage.
Mayor Harrison who tabled the idea in September 1999 thanked council and staff for their support. He called it a great day and a fantastic facility.
The $500,000 in excess budget dollars will go to re-purpose the former work site at 30 Pelham Street to house Quinte Access, Quinte Waste Solutions and the Trenton Food Bank.
Comparing the day to the first day of school, Director of Public Works and Environmental Services Chris Angelo said he has been gleaming all morning as the new facility is promised to increase staff efficiency.
Angelo touted that the new centre has leading edge technology such as a mechanics area featuring three maintenance bays, an OH crane and four robotic lifts that can work on WiFi. The building houses two electric vehicle chargers and LED lights. The temperature in the vehicle storage area is controlled to use less heat in the winter and there are accessible washrooms as well as roof built for solar panels in the future.
When addressing the crowd, Angelo thanked Geertsma Construction project managers Jim Heidinga and Andy Geertsma along with his team councillor Fred Kuypers, and Manager of Operations Jim Turner.
In the works for almost 20 years, former mayor of Quinte West John Williams admitted it is great to see the project completed. He added it speaks a lot to the image of the City and getting things done like the Trent Port Marina, the YMCA, downtown and new fire hall.
Several officials in attendance thanked public works staff and expressed how the facility celebrates the importance that they do for the community.
“When we have issues with snow and floods you’re out there in those trucks,” said Belleville Mayor Taso Christopher.
“You are the heart of our community,” MP Ellis expressed. “When the tough gets going, you get out there.”
Also in attendance: Brighton Mayor Mark Walas on behalf of Northumberland-Quinte West, MPP Lou Rinaldi, former Quinte West Councillor Paul Kyte on behalf of Prince Edward Hastings, MPP Todd Smith, Capt. Daniel Walton, 8 Wing Squadron Unit Chaplin and former Quinte West Mayor Neil Robertson.
An open house for the public is being held Wednesday evening including a guided tour from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Those in attendance took the time to sing and wish Mayor Jim Harrison a Happy 75th Birthday.