Construction of Centre Block condos to begin in September
In 1999, the City of Kitchener purchased the block bordered by King, Young, Duke and Ontario streets next to City Hall.
The property was considered a jewel in the city’s then-derelict downtown, and years of studies ended with the decision to build condo towers on the site.
Fourteen years later, after multiple delays, the City Centre condo project will finally get underway.
Groundbreaking on the project, most recently planned for last November, is now expected to happen this September.
“We’ve now reached our sales targets. Everything’s a go. We’re just getting our drawings finalized,” says Peter Comyns, sales manager of Andrin Homes, which is building City Centre.
Coun. Dan Glenn-Graham, who represents the downtown, says he’s glad to see City Centre finally come to fruition.
“It was a long time, but it was well worth it,” he tells CTV.
“Once people see the project, it’s going to be even more successful. This is an absolute vote of confidence in the downtown.”
Harry Kyriacou, a King Street tailor, says he hopes City Centre will help activity in downtown Kitchener return to where it has been in the past.
“People used to work downtown, they used to come early before they started work, used to have coffee, talk, watch the windows,” he says.
“Right now, you’ve got not much to see.”
But a rejuvenated downtown is a double-edged sword – more foot traffic could lead Kyriacou’s landlord to raise rent on the tailor, which he says he would not be able to afford.
The first phase of City Centre construction, which will see one tower go up with 179 units, is expected to leave 75 of the block’s current 150 parking spots available.
Ground-floor retail could be included in the development’s second tower.
CTV's Max Wark will have more on this story tonight on CTV News at Six.