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Proposed Riverbank Lofts | 16m | 4fl | Municipally Approved

Post #216
12-31-2009 09:22 AM
Unknown Author

Riverbank Lofts
19 Guelph Avenue, Cambridge
Built 1847 | Former American Standard Plant
Developers: JG Group | http://www.jggroup.on.ca/
Move in Date: End of 2011

- $30-million redevelopment of the former American Standard factory in old Hespeler -
- to create 140 condominium units -
- with new stores facing Queen Street -
- rooftop gardens overlooking the Speed River -

Post #217
12-31-2009 09:22 AM

Joined Dec 2009
3780 posts
cc LRT Letters to letters@wonderfulwaterloo.com
City getting five-star hotel
October 04, 2007

A developer wants to put condos and stores on the former American Standard property, Mayor Doug Craig says.

Faisal Susiwala, owner of the former Kress Hotel property, is negotiating to bring a major hotel, retail and condo development to the Preston corner.

Years of talk about a convention centre in Cambridge would become reality as part of a five-star hotel, condominium and retail project planned for Preston, Mayor Doug Craig said yesterday.

And in Hespeler, a developer has purchased the vacant American Standard factory, with plans to convert it into condominiums and street-level retail space, Craig said in a state of the city speech.

The hotel project is planned for the former Kress Hotel property at King and Fountain streets and would include a 1,000-seat meeting space.

Faisal Susiwala, a Cambridge realtor who bought the 2.7-hectare (6.8-acre) corner property a year ago, said the project would cost at least $65 million.

He said he is talking with a hotel operator and a construction company that builds condominiums to bring the project to reality in two or three years.

"I'd like to have a firm project ready to go, with site plans, early in 2008," he said.

Susiwala said the building would be about 85,000 square feet and reach up to 18 storeys as it steps back from a three-storey facade. The first few floors would house a hotel with 150 to 180 rooms. Up to 300 condominium units would share common areas such as a pool. An underground parking garage and meeting halls would be at the rear of the development.

The Kress Hotel was torn down in 1990. Susiwala said he is also looking at the empty Preston Springs Hotel across the street as a possible addition to the project. The century-old building has seen three aborted renovation attempts over the past two decades.

Susiwala envisions a skywalk between old an new, returning the once-grand hotel to its former glory and solving the site's parking shortage.

Craig's speech yesterday was a mostly upbeat snapshot of a city that he boasted was debt-free and the third fastest-growing in the province.

"We have done well and we will continue to do very well," he told about 60 people at the noon-hour event hosted by the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce at the Future Inn on Hespeler Road.

"The city is going through rapid change."

Some changes, such as recent factory closures, have been difficult.

"I think that for many people in the city, it is the best off times, but for some people it is the worst of times," Craig said.

About 15,000 city residents live in poverty, about 700 people are waiting for affordable housing and 7,000 emergency food hampers were distributed last year, he said.

Craig has organized a meeting of politicians from across the region for November to look for ways to deal with manufacturing job losses. While local governments can't do much alone, they can search for ways to bring the provincial and federal governments to the table to create a local job plan.

In 2009, Craig plans to host a Cambridge "summit," which would bring people together to talk about the city's economy, environment, arts and social challenges "to build policies for the next decade."

Most of his 20-minute talk focused on growth and downtown renewal.

He credits the 2004 opening of the University of Waterloo school of architecture as the catalyst for projects across old Galt.

Now the school is talking about expanding, he said, as a slide show of city developments began behind him. They included:

The new $30-million city office building, which is on time and on budget, and will open Feb. 11.

The "spectacular" Waterscape condominium project underway at the north junction of Water and Ainslie streets. The $120-million project will "change the mindset of who we are as a Cambridge community," Craig said.

The historic post office on Water Street, which is undergoing a $6-million conversion into a restaurant and meeting centre, with an opening date expected in 2009. "It will rival any destination in Ontario," Craig said.

The former Tiger Brand factory, which is being converted by the Lancer Group of Toronto into the Tiger Lofts apartments.

An old factory at Water and Concession streets that local developer Amir Klein of AAK construction plans to convert into upscale condominiums.

The former city-owned Royal Hotel at Main and Wellington streets, which Klein has also purchased and plans to turn into loft condominiums and street-level retail space.

A $6-million theatre, which is planned for downtown near the river, with Drayton Entertainment as the tenant.

It was after the slide show that Craig unveiled plans for the hotel-convention centre and development of the American Standard property.

The hotel project will fill a need for meeting space across the region and create a magnificent building at the site of the former Kress hotel, he said. "We are talking about a regionwide impact."

A developer with experience dealing with heritage buildings bought the American Standard factory last Thursday, Craig said.

The city has been working to bring residential development plans forward since the factory's closure was announced May 24.

The sink and bathtub factory closed Sept. 13, leaving 58 people out of work.

Craig said he worked as matchmaker between the company, the realtor handling the project and a developer.

He refused to identify the new owner or provide any other information. The plans are to be formally made public in a month or so, he said.

The four-storey stone building is a landmark along the Speed River in the heart of old Hespeler. Parts of the 160,000-square-foot factory date from 1858, when Jacob Hespeler founded the village with a factory on the site. In earlier years, the mill complex produced flour, liquor, cotton and wool.

In 1913, Stamped Enamel started making sinks there. American Standard bought the company in 1969.

Developer sees bright future for city's industrial relics
November 12, 2007

Developer Shawky Fahel of Waterloo is the new owner of the former American Standard factory in Cambridge. He plans to convert it to condos and retail space.

Hespeler's heart will soon be beating with new life, if Shawky Fahel has his way.

The Waterloo developer is the new owner of the closed American Standard bathtub and sink factory.
He wants to turn the industrial eyesore into a environmentally friendly, residential-commercial landmark. Luxury condominiums and apartments for active seniors would be key parts of the project, as would solar power and recycled materials.

"Heritage is close to my heart . . . this has been around for 200 years and can be for another 500 years," Fahel said

The president of JG Group said his companies saved historic buildings in Waterloo, Kitchener and Brantford from demolition and turned them into thriving parts of the local economy. The Hespeler project will be his biggest so far.

Fahel doesn't have firm plans yet for the dirty cluster of buildings at Guelph Avenue and Queen Street. Parts of the complex date from the 1850s, when Hespeler was hacked out of the wilds of Upper Canada.

Fahel's purchase offer on the building closed Nov. 1. He takes possession Jan. 1. By then, he intends to have conceptual plans ready to display at a public meeting at the Hespeler library.

His goal is to have city rezoning approvals in place by summer, with work underway shortly afterwards.

Government money and community support is critical to making the transformation happen, he said.

"Heritage has to be innovative. It means a partnership with everybody, especially the (city) building department."

An environmental inspection of the site found no contamination, he said. And a structural inspection found no problems.

''The place is clean. The place is solid," Fahel said.

Heritage Cambridge president Kathryn McGarry applauded Fahel's plans. She's eager to offer expertise from her volunteer organization to help make it a reality.

Renovation of buildings is key to saving our history while rejuvenating old urban areas like Hespeler, she said.

"This can act like a seed project to have ripple effect through the downtown core," McGarry said.

"Having a huge project right on the doorstep (of downtown) is just superb."

Karen Grant, past chair of the Hespeler business improvement association was more succinct when she heard details of Fahel's vision.

"Oh my God. What a dream come true."

In all Fahel has about 3.2 hectares (eight acres) of land where the factory stands and downstream. There's another 23 acres of landlocked wetland upstream, between the CN rail line and the river, that came as part of the deal.

There's 194,000 square feet of space in the interconnected structures, created to meet the needs of changing production in the factory over the years. Fahel expects to demolish upwards of 40,000 square feet of utilitarian additions opening up space around the three main stone buildings.

It's disconcerting to walk through the factory today. Everything is frozen at the moment 58 workers walked out the door for the last time Sept. 13

Overhead, banners promote plant safety. At the main entrance, a notice on the employee bulletin board reminds workers to pick up severance packages at the office.

Yogin Chauhan was maintenance manger at American Standard for seven years. Today, he's overseeing the emptying of the building.

While closing down the factory isn't easy, Chauhan shares in Fahel's enthusiasm for turning it into a home for hundreds of people.

"Look at that view," he said while standing on the roof, pointing westward, down the Speed River.

"You appreciated it, but you didn't have the time to look at it. You always had to get back to work."

River plan gets kick start
November 12, 2007

A developer has big plans for the former American Standard plant in Cambridge.

Redevelopment of the former American Standard factory is the kick start needed for the city's stalled $9-million Hespeler river activation plan, says Mayor Doug Craig.

"This whole thing comes right to the front burner," he said.

Shawky Fahel, the Waterloo developer who purchased the 19th century factory complex, shares the mayor's vision.

"This is the catalyst for the whole revitalization and rejuvenation of Hespeler," Fahel said. "You have the heart of Cambridge history here. This building is majestic."

But for Coun. Rick Cowsill, who represents Hespeler, the Speed River plan has little future, despite promises of upscale condominiums and retail space in the heart of the old village.

There's little taxpayer money left for the grand scheme of parkland, trails and public squares along a cleaned-up river and mill pond, surrounded by renovated factory buildings, he said. And there's the reality of serious contamination nixing council's purchase of land at the core of the river plan.

"I'm almost at the point of suggesting its pretty well dead in the water. . . it's sad, but true," Cowsill said.

Most of the $3 million set aside for Hespeler was in 2005 was scooped last year to help fund a $6 million plan to bring a Drayton theatre to downtown Galt, along the Grand River.

Cowsill sees little chance of the needed money ever flowing back north, given the budget headaches he expects council to face this year.

Last month, council rejected buying a three-hectare (eight-acre) piece of contaminated former factory property along the east side of Guelph Avenue, north of the Speed River.

The city spent $250,000 on an environmental study of the lands, once owned by Simplicity products.

"The land is quite contaminated. It's one of the reasons the council decided not to go forward," Cowsill said.

"I didn't want to see council purchase that land. I could see we'd have to spend a hell of a lot money for remediation for what isn't really worth it."

The land purchase was merely put on hold, Craig said. "In my opinion, it is the key piece of property . . . what now puts it back on front burner in river activation is American Standard."

It's taken a long time to work with the provincial Environment Ministry about the contamination, which "kicked the life out of the project," Craig said.

There's still about $400,000 in the Hespeler river plan budget than can be used now, to link with American Standard redevelopment, Craig said.

"Rick and I don't share the same vision," he said.

Cowsill has on his own formed an ad hoc committee of Hespeler residents, to suggest a way to best spend the money left in the budget.

There's no suggestions yet, but Cowsill hopes "some little thing" can be done quickly.

"We're just brainstorming."

So far, all that taxpayers can see resulting from the $9-million plan is a $271,000 river lookout in Elliott Landing park on Queen Street East, and flower boxes on the Guelph Avenue bridge.

Developer deserves praise for factory project
November 16, 2007
Kurtis Kivell

I would like to applaud Waterloo developer Shawky Fahel for his plans to turn the American Standard factory in Hespeler into an "environmentally friendly, residential-commercial landmark" that will be geared toward seniors. (Developer Sees Bright Future For City's Industrial Relics -- Nov. 12) .

Increasingly, cities are sprawling out into important agricultural and environmentally sensitive areas in order to accommodate growing populations. All the while our manufacturing industries are slowly being outsourced to other countries, leaving unsightly scars where the factories, once productive, are now dormant. Transforming these factories from derelict piles of stone and contamination into viable living space is an admirable task.

I hope that our government sees the importance of this task and supports Fahel every step of the way. I believe this trend of gentrification will continue and will become a predominant focus for developers of the future and has the potential to transform our current landscape into something more vibrant.

Kurtis Kivell, Waterloo
Post #218
12-31-2009 09:28 AM

Joined Dec 2009
3780 posts
cc LRT Letters to letters@wonderfulwaterloo.com
Plant bound for the auction block
Stock and fixtures of city's oldest factory will go to the highest bidder tomorrow
November 28, 2007

The heart of the city's oldest factory will hit the auction block tomorrow.

That's when Corporate Assets Inc. will conduct a wall-to-wall sale of all equipment and stock left after American Standard closed its factory in September.

"It will be everything from leftover steel to the big presses that made the bathtubs," said Linda Thompson, executive assistant to Waterloo developer Shawky Fahel, who bought the property.

Fahel plans to convert the top floors of the stone buildings into upscale condominiums and housing for seniors, with commercial space at street level.

The sink and bathtub factory closed Sept. 13. The 58 workers shut off the equipment and the lights, then walked out the door for the last time.

The closure was announced in May after a worldwide restructuring of American Standard's operations.

In July, a sale of the kitchen and bath division, including the Hespeler factory, was made to Bain Capital Partners.

There's been a factory at the site on the Speed River since the 1850s, when industrialist Jacob Hespeler produced flour, cotton, wool and liquor there.

The site became a sink factory in 1913 under the name Stamped and Enamelled Ware Ltd. American Standard bought the company in 1969.

The auction is open to the public, so anyone can take a look around inside as long as they don't disrupt the sale process, Thompson said.

The auction starts at 10:30 a.m. and is expected to last until about 3 p.m.

Along with in-person bidders, the auction will also be presented live over the Internet to any bidder who has pre-registered.

View www.corpassets.com for details about items for auction.

American Standard equipment and stock auction:
  • Starts tomorrow at 10:30 a.m.; expected to run until about 3p.m..
  • Open to the public, with bidding also open live on the Internet to pre-registered bidders.
  • Find more information online at www.corpassets.com.
Post #219
12-31-2009 09:30 AM

Joined Dec 2009
3780 posts
cc LRT Letters to letters@wonderfulwaterloo.com
Invitation to a bustling urban space
One-time grist mill, distillery and factory in Hespeler to become lofts
April 14, 2009

The redevelopment of an old, riverbank factory could transform quiet Hespeler into a bustling urban space.

The JG Group of Companies is scheduled to start work in September at 19 Guelph Ave., the former American Standard plant. The project will create 120 lofts constructed in buildings that have housed a grist mill, cotton mill, distillery, gas house and bathtub factory. Some of the structures go back 162 years.

Many units will overlook the Speed River; others will be near interior courtyards, gardens and pathways.

"It could be the best urban space in Cambridge," said Paul Sapounzi, an architect and partner with The Ventin Group.

"It's more than just the restoration of buildings," Sapounzi said. "It's the creation of a special place."

He compared the project, which is expected to cost $25 to $30 million, to the Distillery District and Liberty Village projects in Toronto.

Sapounzi, who worked with JG Group on the conversion of the Alexander School in Waterloo into condominiums, is supported by Rick Haldenby, director of the University of Waterloo School of Architecture.

"There is nothing like it," Haldenby said. "It will be a rarity in southern Ontario."

The design has been a collaboration involving the JG Group, the Ventin Group and four senior students from the school of architecture.

Jacob Hespeler built the first of the buildings 162 years ago and the project takes its name from the year that grist mill was constructed -- 1847 Riverbank Lofts.

For months, Christopher Thacker, director of development for the JG Group, has worked with four student architects to design the lofts, pathways, parking garage and common areas. Thacker wants the redevelopment to be a mixture of residential units and space for retail, arts, crafts and cultural activities.

"We do believe in mixed use."

An old railway spur on the south side of the development could house a variety of commercial and artistic outlets.

Some residential units will include wireless technology allowing medical professionals off-site to monitor the blood pressure, blood sugar and well-being of seniors living there.

"We are marrying the best of the past with the best of the future in terms of technology," Thacker said. "The whole idea is to keep seniors in their location of choice."

Cambridge Mayor Doug Craig likes what he has seen so far.

"It's wonderful, it's absolutely wonderful," Craig said. "It will be the key component in the revitalization of downtown Hespeler."

Water pours over the Mill Pond Dam on its way into Preston. A nearby riverside bike path takes riders into Preston. Trails could lead people to Guelph.

"This is one of the most beautiful areas in the region, nobody really understands that," Craig said.

Heritage architecture lines the downtown streets. The Carnegie Library that serves as the Hespeler branch of the Cambridge Public Library was not only preserved, but expanded with a glass exterior enclosing the original, historic structure.

The 1847 Riverbank Lofts will include 6,000-7,000 square feet of retail space. The entire development is about 153,000 square feet.

Beginning in September, workers will demolish more recent additions to the buildings, leaving the original stone structures.

In December, work is to begin on the lofts.

"We want to be marketing aggressively with model suites in a year," Thacker said.

The first occupants could be living there in two years.

Former American Standard plant set to undergo transformation
December 02, 2009
By Kevin Swayze, Record staff

The former American Standard factory is set to be converted into 140 condomiumn units. A parking gargage with a garden terrace on top fill the space between two old factory buildings along Guelph Avenue.

CAMBRIDGE — Work should start next month on a $30-million redevelopment of the former American Standard factory in old Hespeler.

Kitchener developer Shawky Fahel won city approval to create 140 condominium units in the sprawling stone complex, with new stores facing Queen Street and rooftop gardens overlooking the Speed River.

“We’re aiming to have people moving in by the end of 2011,” Fahel said.

While city councillors voted unanimously to rezone the site to allow homes and stores, Fahel still needs two more approvals.

The Grand River Conservation Authority must agree to his flood-proofing plan. The provincial Environment Ministry must also agree to a cleanup plan for chemicals in the soil of the sink and bathtub factory which closed two years ago.

Fahel expects both agencies to give approvals to plans by spring so construction crews can move in.

First, however, demolition crews will move in to rip out newer, wood-and-metal additions that knitted the original, mid-1800s stone buildings together. In its place, facing Guelph Avenue, a two-level parking garage is planned with a garden terrace on top.

All the units in the project will be “barrier-free” so they’re friendly for seniors and anyone with mobility issues, Fahel said.

He’s also talking with the conservation authority about using the dam to power an electricity-generating turbine. The dam was built in the 1800s to provide water power to the buildings on the American Standard site.

All the redevelopment is planned upstream of the Guelph Avenue bridge. The rest of the American Standard land downstream of Guelph Avenue will be turned into parkland if Fahel’s plans unfold as he wants with the city. For now, the concrete-block warehouse there will be transformed into a sales office for the project.

Council members praised Fahel for his hard work and efforts to explain his plans to the public. They also believe it will pump life back into the village by the river.

Coun. Karl Kiefer thought Fahel’s project would do for Hespeler what the late Milo Shantz did for downtown St. Jacobs.

“I’ve always believed the potential of a project of this magnitude is what Hespeler needs for rejuvenation,” he said.

Coun. Ben Tucci agreed.

“I’m a firm believer this is going to be a catalyst project for Hespeler.”
Post #2261
02-24-2010 09:01 AM

Joined Dec 2009
3780 posts
cc LRT Letters to letters@wonderfulwaterloo.com
Report: P-10-013 http://region.waterloo.on.ca/web/reg...df?openelement
Community Planning
TO: Chair Jim Wideman and Members of the Planning and Works Committee
DATE: February 16, 2010

City of Cambridge
3. Official Plan Amendment No. 30
Applicant: 1847 Riverbank Lofts, J.G. Group
Location: 19 Guelph Avenue
Proposal: To amend the limits of the floodplain designation on Map 11 of the City of Cambridge Official Plan from ‘floodway’ to ‘flood fringe’ on the designated portion of property.
Processing Fee: Paid January 21, 2010
Commissioner’s Approval: January 27, 2010
Post #11164
07-20-2010 05:05 PM

Town Member
Joined Feb 2010
237 posts
Doug Craig reports on Twitter that the signs advertising this project are up.

Also, there is an updated rendering: http://www.jggroup.on.ca/images/proj..._1500x1200.jpg
I like this version better than the one at the top of this thread. Better preservation of the heritage, for one. I really like the look of this project!

Post #11165
07-20-2010 05:15 PM

Metropolis Member
Waterloo, ON
Joined Jan 2010
1018 posts
Quote Originally Posted by smably View Post
Also, there is an updated rendering: http://www.jggroup.on.ca/images/proj..._1500x1200.jpg
I like this version better than the one at the top of this thread. Better preservation of the heritage, for one. I really like the look of this project!
That looks fantastic!
Post #11170
07-20-2010 05:43 PM

City Member
West-South-West Kitchener
Joined May 2010
596 posts
This is a hell of a shot in the arm for Hespeler. Best of luck to the developers, great job!
Post #11175
07-20-2010 06:12 PM

Town Member
Joined Mar 2010
476 posts
Looks good to me. Now let's get on with the show--Hespeler needs all the help it can get!
Post #11178
07-20-2010 06:41 PM

Metropolis Member
Joined Dec 2009
4947 posts
Looks great, anxious to see progress with this one.
Post #11179
07-20-2010 06:44 PM

Town Member
Joined Mar 2010
341 posts
I love the new rendering and am excited to see if this project goes through!

I'm actually a little surprised that downtown Hespeler hasn't seen any gentrification (a la Unionville or Port Credit) when you consider how much suburban development has swallowed up that town from when it used to be separate from Cambridge and the tri-city area only 20 years ago. There's a lot more dollars nearby now...and in particular, more Toronto dollars than most other parts of the city and region.

Hopefully this loft project brings downtown Hespeler that much closer to being a nice intersection to be at. Lord knows all the nearby tract housing hasn't contributed a whole lot.
Post #11203
07-20-2010 10:51 PM

City Member
Kitchener, Ontario
Joined Feb 2010
968 posts
"Only the insane have the strength enough to prosper. Only those that prosper may truly judge what is sane."
Quote Originally Posted by Urban_Enthusiast86 View Post
Hopefully this loft project brings downtown Hespeler that much closer to being a nice intersection to be at. Lord knows all the nearby tract housing hasn't contributed a whole lot.
Where is downtown Hespeler? (This is a serious question). Downtown Preston is near King and Eagle, downtown Galt is near Water and Main, but Hespeler seems to be almost exclusively suburban sprawl and industry. Am I missing something?
Post #11210
07-21-2010 12:12 AM

Town Member
Joined Feb 2010
237 posts
Downtown Hespeler is Queen Street, centred on Guelph Avenue or so. (street view)
Post #11211
07-21-2010 07:47 AM

Town Member
Joined Mar 2010
341 posts
Quote Originally Posted by Urbanomicon View Post
Where is downtown Hespeler? (This is a serious question). Downtown Preston is near King and Eagle, downtown Galt is near Water and Main, but Hespeler seems to be almost exclusively suburban sprawl and industry. Am I missing something?
What smably said. But don't feel ashamed...it's easy to miss.
Post #11227
07-21-2010 11:03 AM

Town Member
Joined Mar 2010
354 posts
That looks absolutely fabulous. I'd love to have a building and a setting like that in KW (and I'd imagine most other cities would also). Hope it comes to pass.
Post #11232
07-21-2010 11:34 AM

Metropolis Member
Joined Dec 2009
4947 posts
When does it get voted on?
Post #11235
07-21-2010 11:52 AM

City Member
West-South-West Kitchener
Joined May 2010
596 posts
The best thing to happen to downtown Hespeler lately is their library - they had still been operating out of their century-old Carnegie library but needed expansion; the awesome thing they did was to keep the old building, but put a glass box around it to provide the extra space. A real architectural gem in the Region, which few people know about.
Post #11313
07-22-2010 11:08 AM
Section ThirtyOne

Food & Retail Moderator
Waterloo, ON
Joined Feb 2010
245 posts
Wow, that really does look like an outstanding development. This is really Hespeler's 'Centre Block' or 'Barrel Yards' that could really transform that part of the region.

It's a shame that Cambridge downtowns have been so long maligned, as they are definitely more picturesque than either Kitchener or Waterloo.
Post #11390
07-23-2010 09:12 AM

Metropolis Member
Joined Dec 2009
4947 posts
Advance sales start for condos in former Hespeler factory

July 23, 2010
By Kevin Swayze, Record staff

CAMBRIDGE — Advance sales of condominium units in the former American Standard factory started Monday.

Kitchener developer Shawky Fahel says he’s essentially cleared regulatory hurdles and can get started on a $20 to $30 million rejuvenation of the old plant in downtown Hespeler. It produced bathroom fixtures before it closed in 2007.

“It’s taken 2 1/2 years . . . we’re standing on top of a mountain today,” Fahel said.

Before billboards went up and a website went live, 60 people had already called or emailed wanting information about purchasing one of the 124 units, he said.

Fahel expects buyers will be moving in by the end of 2012.

Prices for the Riverbank Lofts will start at $159,000. By October, a model unit will be ready in a concrete-block warehouse across Guelph Avenue from the main factory, which will house the sales office.

A provincial record of site condition is done, spelling out cleanup and monitoring conditions after people move in. Grand River Conservation Authority staff signed off on flood control plans. The site overlooks the Speed River.

There’s “no legal impediment” to pending city approval of the redevelopment, said Cambridge planning commissioner Janet Babcock.

Fahel has had to scale back his plans because of a shortage of sewage treatment capacity at the Hespeler waste water plant. It should be a short-term change — the Hespeler sewage treatment plant is scheduled for an upgrade in 2016.

For now, he’ll redevelop three main buildings on the site: one along the river, one along a railway siding off Guelph Avenue and one along Chapel Street. A building closer to Queen Street won’t be redeveloped until the community has more sewage-treatment capacity.

Fahel said he will ask Waterloo Region and the City of Cambridge for a tax-deferral agreement to help cover the $1.7 million cleanup cost of the old factory.

Cleanup and demolition is expected to start by fall, Fahel said.

Industrialist Jacob Hespeler built his first stone building on the site in 1847, and most of the rest of the complex within 20 years. The dam by the old factory held back water to power the flour mill, distillery, wool and cotton-making operations.

The plant became a sink factory in 1913, as Stamped and Enamelled Ware Ltd. American Standard bought the company in 1969.

The factory closed Sept. 13, 2007.

The massive stone walls and wooden beams of the original factories will be used in the living spaces of the complex. Solar panels will produce electricity. Fahel said the project will showcase environmental sustainability.

Local businesses look forward to having hundreds of new people moving downtown, said Loris Manni, owner of Gifted Floral on Queen Street.

“We feel it’s going to affect the street . . . to have American Standard closed up all this long is not a good thing.”

Post #11550
07-26-2010 08:20 AM

Joined Dec 2009
3780 posts
cc LRT Letters to letters@wonderfulwaterloo.com
July 23, 2010

Queen Street West Frontage