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OwenSoundCourtHouse-feat-by Anne Finlay-Stewart

The old Courthouse, jail and 1.3 acres of land on 3rd Avenue East has been officially sold to the Southbridge Care Homes division of Southbridge Capital for $10, tax included. The sale, announced in mid-May, closed July 30.  A staff report on the sale is headed to city council Monday.
The 1853 building has served many purposes over its 162 year life – Courthouse for the County of Grey, the site of the inaugural Owen Sound council meeting, police headquarters, home of the Grey Bruce Arts Council, a performance space, offices and studios. Most recently, the Tom Thomson Art Gallery held a public meeting at which the Courthouse was named as the preferred site of an expanded gallery, made necessary in part by the need to move storage of the collection out of the basement to meet insurance requirements. In their detailed business plan, the Gallery listed the benefits to the city of that site choice beyond the adaptive re-use of the building, including "re-vitalizing a near-core neighbourhood that needs transformation". The  City would be left with assets, the plan said - "two saleable properties: the Rice House and the current Art Gallery, together worth considerably more than the asking price for the Courthouse."

In his report on the Courthouse sale prepared for Council, Manager of Economic Development Steve Furness said that while there was no direct financial gain in the sale,

council-feature-by Jon Farmer

In the absence of the Hub's Editor, I sat in on Owen Sound council and made the following observations:

The majority of councilors arrived dressed down to look cool in the heat. I've never seen so many delightfully ugly shirts on elected officials.


•First the City Council checked its mail:

goodsexchange-featureThe second of three Goods Exchange Days for 2015 will be taking place on Saturday July 25. It's like a City-wide Free Yard Sale.

Goods Exchange Day is an enjoyable way to divert usable items and materials from landfill disposal. It is also a great way to get rid of unwanted stuff without the hassle of having to put on your own garage sale.

We ask that City residents...

strategic-plan-button-featureThe City of Owen Sound Council has approved a new 2015 Strategic Plan: 2020 Making Our Vision Clear.

Lura Consulting was selected last November to assist the City in the development of a strategic plan, and for the past eight months, City representatives have been asking community members 'what you love about Owen Sound', 'what your vision is for Owen Sound', and to prioritize the City's future.

On July 20, 2015, Council approved the final draft of the City of Owen Sound's 2015 Strategic Plan. "This Strategic Plan is a blueprint that will help guide Owen Sound's decision-making on programs, policies and community investments over the next five years," said Mayor Ian Boddy. "It embodies the long-term vision, mission, and goals of Owen Sound's residents and businesses, which are important to the future development of the City. I am proud of the fact that close to 800 people provided input to this Plan."

The Strategic Plan identifies four primary focus areas

scull-featureContractors will begin work in the water on the Owen Sound Wastewater Treatment Plant outfall pipe the week of July 13, 2015.

The work area extends approximately 200 metres from shore, north of the community boat launch at the Bayshore Community Centre, and east of Navigation Buoy T-11, well outside the navigation channel. The area to avoid will be delineated by buoys, and a turbidity curtain, extending from the outfall location, all the way to the shoreline. Information buoys will be provided. All buoys will be lit at night time.

It is important that the boating public stay out of the work area, and give it a wide berth. It is especially important that vessels reduce speed to accommodate little to no wake for marine construction and diving operations, for an area approximately 500 metres north and south of Navigation Buoy T-11. This is to protect the health and safety of the boating public, and the workers and divers undertaking the work.

The contractor undertaking the work, ODS Marine, will provide a daily Notice to Mariners on the operations status for the duration of the project.

The work is intended to be completed prior to the Salmon Spectacular which begins on Friday, August 28, 2015.

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