There was more confirmation from Mayor Chris Clarke that big changes are coming to the former town hall in Liverpool.
© Nick Moase Photo
During the Region of Queens Municipal Council meeting on April 8 the 2014/2015 budget was announced. Included in the capital portion of the budget is $205,000 for renovations of the former town hall.
“We visualize turning (the town hall) into a multi-user centre,” says Mayor Clarke.
The mayor had indicated back in January that some changes may be in the works and that the current tenant, Sherman Hines, was involved.
All plans for the former town hall are tentative but Mayor Clarke says the hope is to open the front entrance of the former town hall and use that as the entrance to the Astor Theatre. The Sherman Hines Museum of Photography is currently housed in the former town hall.
New washrooms are also a part of the tentative plans and new offices. Mayor Clarke also says some partitions may be taken down upstairs to open up some space up there.
“So there’s going to be three big rooms up there and we haven’t decided how they’re going to be used and so on but there will be three big rooms up there for community use,” says Mayor Clarke.
Meetings are happening between interested groups, Sherman Hines, and Mayor Clarke later this week. Most of the groups that have been in consultation with have the mayor have been arts related. Acadia First Nation has also been involved.
Cate Bird, a member of the Astor Theatre Society, has pushed for the use of the town hall for various groups, including the Astor Theatre for many years. She is pleased to hear that the town hall will be more utilized by the community.
“If they’re making the front door through to the theatre then that is wonderful,” says Bird.
Bird says the presence on Main Street will raise the profile of the arts in Queens County.
Mayor Clarke says not to expect changes right away.
“We probably won’t get much activity or new residents in there until almost a new year,” says Mayor Clarke.
Mayor Clarke says the funding for the project is contingent on receiving money from ACOA. The Region hopes to lower the price tag to $82,000.