Work on Phase II of the Heritage Tourism Project will be done for the year by the end of this week, with only a few finishing touches to go in the spring.
Reconstruction of the refurbished lookout tower is now complete, with the final sections of railing put in and windows on the cupola installed, Community Services manager George Bell told town council last night.
Leisure Audio has installed security locks and surveillance cameras on both the tower and “Hallett,” with the sites under 24-hour surveillance.
Ed Kaun & Sons, meanwhile, have installed street sign poles and interpretive panel pedestals, with the street signs likely to be installed shortly, Bell noted.
Wayfinding banners and interpretive panels will be installed in the spring—just before the sites are opened to visitors.
“In essence, we have completed pretty much everything we can this year,” Bell said.
He added a final site meeting with contractor Tom Jones will be held this Friday.
The project has been on budget at a cost of about $1.1 million.
In related news, council approved a report to direct staff to purchase Christmas lights to decorate the lookout tower.
These will be purchased via council’s public relations expense fund.
Fort Frances Power Corp. will donate their time and manpower to string the lights on the tower.
And over at the site of the new Fort Frances Public Library and Technology Centre, the building is taking shape more and more.
General contractor Aurora Construction continues to work on the pitched roof, the south side of which is ready to receive steel roofing.
The north side roof is about 15 percent complete while the south side lower roof is 60 percent complete.
The exterior frames and glass are about 50 percent complete.
The exterior walls are covered in insulation while the interior walls are complete and dry-walling has commenced.
The interior electrical, plumbing, and ductwork continues.
Also at last night’s meeting, council heard a pair of presentations by two of the three winners of the essay contest held in conjunction with Local Government Week (Oct. 18-24).
The presenters were Grade 5 students Maddison Krikke (Robert Moore) and Emma Noga (St. Francis).
Carly Pruys, a student in the Grade 10 Civics class at Fort High, was not present.
Council also heard a presentation by economic development officer Geoff Gillon, who gave a report on Rainy River Future Development Corp. activities, as well as an economic development strategy and proposed budget for 2010.
Also last night, council:
•denied a request from Coun. Ken Perry for extended permission to have a construction trailer parked on his property until May 1, 2010 and asked him to move it immediately;
•referred a request from the Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce re: reduction of arena rental fees to the Community Services executive committee for its recommendation;
•passed a bylaw to amend By-Law 14/04 setting out the duties and responsibilities of the Chief Administrative Officer for the Town of Fort Frances;
•passed a bylaw to designate Lots 28 and 29 on Plan SM-44 (1111 First St. E.); and
•passed a bylaw to approve a service agreement with the Ontario Clean Water Agency for operation of the sewage treatment plant and lift stations (Tender 09-OF-09).