Work set to begin on Memorial Square

May 30, 2017

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The city has announced that work on the reconstruction of Memorial Square & Meridian Place will begin Thursday, June 1.
The work will result in Fred Grant Street being permanently closed, to be replaced with wide, sloped avenues for pedestrians along each side of Memorial Square, which will create a continuous link with Heritage Park.
“Memorial Square & Meridian Place will be a great public space at the core of our city,” Mayor Jeff Lehman says. “Complete with the long awaited bandshell, this will be the place where people come to experience local culture and events. It’s also going to improve connections between our waterfront and the downtown.”
Meridian paid for exclusive naming rights of the space that stretches from the Memorial Square cenotaph area to Simcoe Street for a period of 25 years. The agreement allows for the cenotaph area to continue to be known as Memorial Square. As part of the project, Memorial Square will significantly increase in size to accommodate larger ceremonial events and the cenotaph will be relocated to make it the central focus of the square.
The name ‘Meridian Place’ was chosen through Meridian’s ‘Name your City Space’ online vote, in which Barrie residents were asked to pick their favourite name from a list of three options.
The project is a collaborative initiative with the Downtown Barrie Business Association (BIA), and was originally intended to begin in fall 2016. However, all of the bids received through the first Request for Proposal (RFP) were over the budget approved by city council.
To ensure the project remained within the approved budget, the city conducted another procurement process. This time, a design/build approach was used, in which the bidders were asked to come up with a modified design that meets all of the elements in the square concept that was approved by council, within the approved budget amount.
The City of Barrie, BIA and Meridian will share the total $3.8 million cost of the project. The project is expected to be complete in spring 2018.
For more information on the project, including renderings, click here.

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