DOW People Place as seen through the fence in Centennial Park, August 13, 2015 (BlackburnNews.com Photo by Briana Carnegie)

Most Of Centennial Park Closed For Another Summer

A good portion of Sarnia’s Centennial Park will remain closed to the public for yet another summer.

City Engineer Andre Morin says Phase 2 and 3 of park construction, planned to begin the first week of July, isn’t expected to be wrapped up now until November.

It was previously expected the park would be fully reopened to the public by Labour Day weekend.

“Approvals took a little longer than we had anticipated, not because people were dragging their feet just because they had to go through the checks and balances,” says Morin.

“Our consultants have been working diligently to try to bring this together, it has been done in record time and they’re in the final throws of getting it ready.”

Staff must work within council’s approved budget for Centennial Park of $8-million, including $5.5-million for Phase 2 and 3 remediation.

This will be the fourth consecutive summer that much of the park is closed off following the discovery of asbestos and other contaminants in May 2013.

Mayor Mike Bradley recently spoke out against keeping asbestos on site, and encouraged residents opposed to it to contact city representatives.

Morin says city council has supported all along keeping impacted material on-site, rather than paying $40-million to entirely remove and replace it.

When inhaled, asbestos fibres can cause serious diseases including mesothelioma and asbestosis.