The old firehall on Bascom St. has been empty for over two years, but construction on its next incarnation may begin this summer.Conrad Boyce, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Much speculation occurs both in-person and online about what’s happening with various addresses along and around lower Brock St. Here’s the downtown low-down according to Township Development Services director Kyle Rainbow.

1. Circle K –  As soon as the lease on this half of the building expires, the building will be demolished and a new one built as a cornerstone of the Town Square proposal. The new building will likely be a mix of commercial, office and residential space, and may include a convenience store at street level.

2. Coffee Time – This space will remain vacant until its neighbour’s lease runs out. As part of the recent culvert project, the Township purchased the building that housed both businesses. 

3. The Culvert Project – This project, which ended up taking much more time and money than originally planned, is not quite over. There are still legal wrangles ongoing over the impact the culvert reconstruction had on area businesses, and they may not be settled for some time to come. 

4. Uxbridge Shoes – To make room for the work on the Uxbridge Brook culvert, Uxbridge Shoes had to relocate to the former IGA building up the hill. This spring, the business will take its first steps toward coming home. Owner John Rodych is finalizing the design and project team for a two-storey building that will have four two-bedroom apartments on the top floor, and two businesses at street level. Rodych says the nature of his new neighbour’s business will be a “wonderful surprise.” He hopes to begin construction by early spring.

5. Sushi Park and Sugar FX – This site at 11-13 Brock West has made little progress since the fire that destroyed the heritage building in September 2022. Rainbow says the Township has launched legal action against the owner, who has not complied with orders to complete demolition of the building. When it is rebuilt, it will have to adhere to strict heritage design guidelines for Brock St., adopted by the Township more than 20 years ago. The same guidelines would apply to any new building on the street, such as the new Uxbridge Shoes building, or the buildings surrounding the Town Square.

6. Trinity United Church – Rainbow says he has been assured by Kindred Works, the development arm of the United Church of Canada, that it intends to begin construction of the project to replace the church, demolished in the aftermath of the May 2022 tornado, by this coming summer. The project will include a scaled-down church, facing on First Ave., as well as a new housing complex on Main St., consisting of 105 housing units in two six-storey buildings. A third of those units will be “affordable” (fixed at 30 per cent of the tenant’s gross income). The tenants of the three buildings on Main St., owned by Trinity, have been given notice to vacate by spring, at which point the buildings will be demolished to make way for the new housing.

7. Rush Photo –  The owner, according to Rainbow, has been trying to lease this commercial space without success. The apartments above continue to be occupied. Because of the businesses on either side, redevelopment options will be limited.

8.  La Petite Fleur – Across the street from Rush Photo, also formerly known as Ballinger’s and Homan’s. The same owner as the Rush Photo building owns the former site of the flower shop, as well as ReMax on the corner and the nail studio in between. The owner is seeking a buyer who would redevelop the eastern building, which would face onto the new Town Square envisaged in the Township’s downtown revitalization scenario.

9. VIP – Just north of the fire station, one of the town’s youth theatre companies, Vocally Inspired Performers (VIP), has already begun work on renovating the former home of Ash’s Lashes as a studio space for classes and rehearsals, as well as for storing its large stock of costumes and props.

10.  The old fire station – The new owner of the site on Bascom St. plans a four-storey building with a mix of office and residential spaces. He also hopes to begin construction this year.

By Conrad Boyce, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Feb 15, 2024 at 13:30

This item reprinted with permission from   Uxbridge Cosmos   Uxbridge, Ontario
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