Agassiz’s Aberdeen building is getting ready for an upgrade.
On Feb. 25, the province announced it had awarded $395,000 to the District of Kent to upgrade its Aberdeen building, built in 1995 as a replica of the historic Aberdeen Hotel. The building, located next to Pioneer Park, is the current home of the Agassiz Harrison Observer, as well as the public washrooms.
With the grant funding, the district is planning to complete significant renovations to the interior and exterior of the building, including constructing a 19’x15’ storage shed for event supplies and building an outdoor concert stage on the west end. The district also plans to improve the upstairs space, currently used for stage, for summer programming and create additional walkways around the building.
In addition, the district is also aiming to create a historical mural in collaboration with the Agassiz Harrison Historical Society along the westside of the building. The photos and storyboards will tell the story of the Aberdeen building and the downtown community.
The district awarded the construction project to Hope River Contracting for $327,499 — the same price the company quoted in the district’s grant application. The company has agreed to honour that price, so long as they are able to adjust individual items due to an increase in material costs since the grant was submitted.
Because the quote is less than the grant money, Kent Mayor Sylvia Pranger requested the district “set an example” by looking at the addition of solar panels on the building’s roof. Staff will be coming back to council with a report on the costs associated with adding solar panels and charging stations to the building.
Construction is expected to take place between May and October of this year, with the historical mural being completed in November.