Commercial façade improvement grant awarded for downtown Wingham plaza

·2 min read

WINGHAM – The plaza located at 355 Josephine St. is getting a facelift.

The new owner was awarded the maximum of $10,000 after applying to the Commercial Façade Improvement Grant to repair Units 1 and 2, which have been empty and fallen into disrepair.

The building houses Circle K, Pizza Hut, and the former Coffee Culture, soon to be Sunnyside Grill, and its property was purchased on Feb. 21.

The applicant indicated in a report that the two units have been empty for more than two years and the façade has been neglected and fallen into disrepair, with some spots being rotten and unstable in several sections.

As part of their application, the applicant provided the following comments:

· The work would be a significant improvement to the retail plaza. It would help enhance the aesthetic of the subject building and the main street of the Wingham ward.

· The new façade panels will have a distinct visual improvement and will be clearly viewed from the street.

· The subject property sits on a prominent corner along the main thoroughfare of Wingham, with a high level of visual exposure and daily traffic volume, both pedestrian and vehicle.

· The enhancement to the subject building will help aide in the overall revitalization of the downtown core.

The applicant is planning to have the facades wrapped in Tyvec paper. Then an installation of high-quality, durable metal panel sections (ACP panel box cladding) that will cover the exterior would occur.

The applicant is planning to have new signage along the façade of Unit 1.

The estimated cost of the proposed work is $27,781.05.

An executive summary explains the Community Improvement Plan (CIP) as “a tool that encourages and leverages private investment by providing financial incentives to projects in geographically specific areas of a municipality to promote physical improvements. It is the goal of community improvement planning to encourage revitalization, redevelopment, and enhancement of defined areas.”

In 2018, North Huron council approved the development of a CIP for the Wingham and Blyth main streets.

In 2019, the original plan was amended to add a second program and an opportunity for applicants to apply for grants.

The project area for the CIP was also expanded to include properties in the North Huron portion of Belgrave.

CIP projects are eligible for a grant of up to 50 per cent of eligible improvement costs, up to a maximum grant of $10,000.

Cory Bilyea, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Wingham Advance Times

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