Oil Springs is about to invest $90,000 into its community hall.
In August, construction will begin on the Oil Springs Line landmark that will make the Canada Post outlet accessible to all.
Clerk Jennifer Turk says contractors will begin installing a concrete ramp to the post office at a cost of $52,000. It’s part of the village’s effort to make all public buildings accessible under the Ontarians with Disabilities Act. “The accessibility act is really hard on small municipalities,” says Turk noting it is quite expensive to retrofit old buildings to make them accessible.
Oil Springs was able to get a grant from the Canada150 fund and the Alix Foundation locally to complete the accessibility work.
The village will also be taking money out of reserves for upkeep on the building. New windows will be installed on the upper floor and the west wall of the building will be repointed – a process where old mortar between bricks is pulled out and replaced.
Turk says that side of the building was done last because the hydro is hooked up to the wall and it will have to be taken down during the process. Part of the $90,000 construction budget includes the cost of a generator to keep the lights on for all of the tenants of the building.
“We did coordinate the work with the window company to do it all at the same time because we would have had to move the hydro wires for the windows as well.”
Turk adds the municipality considered burying the lines, but that would be too costly.
“It may seem as though the village is dumping a lot of money into one building but if you don’t, then someday, it’s going to crumble,” she added.