For the first time since March drivers and pedestrians using the west end of Concession Street can get around without having to dodge construction crews or find alternate routes.

“The streetscape looks fantastic,” said Leo Santos, chair of the Concession Street business improvement area, after the section of the street between Upper Wellington and Upper Wentworth re-opened on Monday.

Concession Street between Upper Wellington and Upper Sherman is undergoing a $10 million reconstruction.

Santos said businesses and residents in the area are glad to have their street back.

“It obviously has been a long, gruesome battle to get through this but they’re happy to see the end result and the (traffic) flow is here and the people will be coming back…we’re more accessible than we were at the beginning.”

The BIA last Friday presented construction workers with a cake during a barbecue at Sam Lawrence Park to celebrate the first phase of the road work being completed.

Work on the east leg of the project between Poplar and Upper Sherman is nearly complete and that part of the street is slated to re-open on Aug. 31.

Meanwhile, work on Concession Street between Upper Wentworth and Poplar will continue to December and that part of the road is closed to traffic.

The reconstruction includes water main upgrades and full road reconstruction including new curbs, sidewalks and urban Braille and new pedestrian-activated crossing signals will be installed at East 13th and at Viewpoint Avenue.

Santos said the reconstruction should attract new business to the street and encourage existing businesses to spruce up their storefronts.

He added the BIA is already planning some sort of street festival or event for next June and there is talk of holding a fall event on the west end of the street.

Article written by Mark Newman, courtesy of Hamilton News

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