Construction of the long-awaited Place des Arts in Sudbury to begin this week

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Phase 2 of Sudbury’s arts and culture hub Place des Arts is set to begin this week, and includes construction of the building at Large and Elgin Streets. The builder awarded the project is HEIN, a company with more than 30 years of construction experience and a specialty in institutional and commercial projects.

“With the preparation of the site last fall, we have the ground all ready for us to start construction this summer,” said Stéphane Gauthier, president of Place des Arts.

The Place des Arts du Grand Sudbury is working closely with the municipal governments to keep disruptions to public life to a minimum during construction, although construction in such close quarters is expected to be a complicated undertaking.

The finished project should be worth the wait. The Place des Arts is expected to bring 50,000 new visitors to the downtown core to attend its 850 events during the first year in operation.

The project will incorporate precious relics from the past and a public art installation by Lise Beaudry into the interior architectural design. It’s very exciting to be embarking on the home stretch,” Gauthier said.

Planning and design for Northern Ontario’s first multidisciplinary centre of artistic excellence began some 20 months ago. The four-storey, 40,000 square foot building will house black-box-style multifunction studio, a concert hall with nearly 300 seats, an art gallery, a bistro with sidewalk terrace, an early childhood arts centre, and a bookstore.

10,000 feet of office space will house the seven founding organizations in day-to-day operations.

Architects on the project are Sudbury’s Yallowega Belanger Salach and Toronto’s Moriyama and Teshima firms, who designed the project to be “a bit audacious,” with bold dynamic lines and a bright and modern design.

Some of the materials used will pay homage to resources found in the North, such as corten steel, which is a durable material with colours similar to those of Northern Ontario ore.

The expected project cost is $30 million, and the work is expected to create nearly 180 jobs by the time the work is mostly done at the end of 2020.

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