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Ontario Construction News staff writer
Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens has unveiled the latest conceptual designs for the Walkerville Theming and Districting Plan, a proposal expected to serve as a blueprint for the development and beautification of historic Walkerville for the next twenty years.
Artistic renderings designed by BrookMcIlroy were influenced by input from more than 400 residents who took part in public consultations between 2018 and 2020.
Work will begin this year to build the new parkette where a commemorative sculpture of Hiram Walker, the founder of Walkerville, will be installed, creating the district’s first picturesque gateway to the community.
“The Walkerville Theming and Districting Plan will maximize the economic, social and cultural potential of this historic neighbourhood,” Dilkens said. “It builds on Walkerville’s many strengths and creates new opportunities to make this special place even more inviting, lively and prosperous and will have far-reaching and positive effects on our community for decades into the future.”
The plan proposes nine new initiatives, improvements, projects and opportunities (IIPOs) that build on Walkerville’s rich legacy, iconic architecture and strategic location to maximize the area’s economic potential while optimizing its social and cultural value.
Initiatives include creating more greenspace, building new, well-connected parks, plazas, active mobility corridors, mixed-use developments, pedestrianized streets, gateways, unique signage and wayfinding programs that celebrate the history and heritage of Walkerville. The project also identifies three distinct districts:
- The Walkerville Distillery District, located in the historic Hiram Walker Distillery area
- The Walkerville Commercial District, the area along Wyandotte Street
- The Walkerville Neighbourhood, as defined by the residential streets
An online consultation period on the development plan is open until Oct. 27.
“The Walkerville Theming and Districting Plan is an exciting project because it is rooted in community and business needs,” said councillor Chris Holt. “Walkerville will become the shining example of what’s possible when we all come together with a common goal and actively strive to bring it to fruition.”