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Official ribbon cutting welcomes pavilion to Essex Centre



by Sylene Argent

The idea of adding a pavilion to the Essex Centre Heritage Gardens Park stems back to 2014 when consulting firm, Stempski Kelly Associates, introduced the Essex Centre Streetscape & Silo District Plan.

  After years of planning, representatives of the Essex Centre BIA and the Town of Essex finally had the chance to host a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday evening to officially welcome the new piece of infrastructure into the community.

During the ceremony, special thanks were sent out to Goodreau Sawmill Inc., which constructed the pavilion, and Dan Boudreau, who designed the large shelter with the BIA’s request to include characteristics of the historical Essex Railway Station. Their involvement helped progress the pavilion project from a simple idea to fruition.

  Doug Sweet, Essex’s Director of Community Services, and John Olsen, Manger of Facilities, were also recognized for their involvement in the project.

  Essex Mayor Ron McDermott said the pavilion was more than just concrete and wood, it is a beautiful structure community members and visitors alike will enjoy for years to come. “It is a place to show off what the Town of Essex has to offer,” he said.

  Installing the project would not have been possible without the partnership with the Essex Centre BIA, McDermott said, who sits on the Board of Directors as a liaison for Council.

  “We know visitors to the town and residents alike will put this pavilion to good use,” he added.

  Essex Council awarded the tender to Goodreau Sawmill Inc. in late 2017 in the amount of $319,564. The Town of Essex and the Essex Centre BIA shared the cost.

  Essex Centre BIA Director, Mary-Anne Bjorkman, who was Chairperson of the Board for the majority of the time the pavilion project was underway, was very involved during the design phase. She said it was good for the local organization to get involved with the pavilion project as it fulfills one of the two mandates for the BIA, improving the physical environment of the downtown area. She noted the possibility of the pavilion was introduced at a time when the BIA was looking to undertake a project.

  “It was a long time coming. There was a lot of planning and a lot of negotiating. It was all worth it,” she said, thanking the Town for getting behind the project and the BIA Board for consistency voting to ensure there was enough support to see the project through.

  The ribbon cutting was held just before the Rio Michaels Trio performed as part of the Arts, Culture, and Tourism (ACT) Committees weekly concert series, “Tune Up the Parks.”

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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