Bayside Centre facelift to start in new year

An artist rendering of the redeveloped Lambton County Shared Services Centre. (Handout.)

Renovations on the Lambton County Shared Services Centre at Bayside Centre are expected to start next spring.

Oakville-based Seasons Retirement Communities purchased the mall in 2017 and has been negotiating a long-term lease with the county for part of the site, at Christina and Lochiel streets.

General Manager of Corporate Services Stephane Thiffeault said staff are concluding the commercial negotiations.

“We’ve been negotiating for a long term lease at the Bayside Centre for a little over 18 months, if not longer, and council instructed us to wrap up the legal agreements and present those legal agreements to council for final review and approval in February 2020,” said Thiffeault.

The 20-year lease agreement gives the county the option to purchase the building.

“We will continue to occupy the same facilities that we occupy now, however, there will be some significant renovations to those facilities over the next 12 to 18 months once the project starts.”

The county is working out details to continue operating during construction.

“The plan and the expectation would be that shovels would be in the ground by sometime in the spring, or late spring, of 2020.”

The city agreed in 2018 to sell the land underneath the mall to Seasons for $1 million, but a new lease with the county was required first.