Library, Downtown Access to be Upgraded in Harriston

By Patrick Raftis in Community, Places, Events, & History
Preliminary architectural image by L. Alan Grinham Architect Inc.

Preliminary architectural image by
L. Alan Grinham Architect Inc.

Enhancements to the streetscape, and the expansion of the Harriston Wellington County Library branch were highlighted at the Harriston Downtown
Revitalization Committee’s Mayor’s Breakfast on April 8.
Preliminary architectural images of the expanded library showed off an attractive building more than 50 per cent larger than the existing library, with accessibility enhancements, including an elevator, expanded gallery and archive space, and additional parking. The project is included in the county’s draft budget for 2012. The Harriston Library is one of five Carnegie libraries in Wellington County. The county has been systematically upgrading the facilities, with renovations completed at the Elora, Mount Forest and Palmerston branches and plans on the books to upgrade the library in Fergus.
Also presented at the breakfast was a proposal to create a new pedestrian pathway across the Maitland River in Harriston’s downtown. Mayor George Bridge explained that the existing pedestrian bridge beside Evergreen Variety needs about $50,000 in repair work. Instead, the town is looking at creating a walkway/park area over the beams which once supported a video store, which was destroyed by fire. Historically, a tannery was once located in the spot and the proposed park would be called Tannery Park. It would feature a deck with seating areas crossing the river and enhanced green space on the west side of the river. Bridge explained the municipality is seeking funding partnerships to help with the cost of the project, which will enhance accessibility to the downtown.