Renovated Lambton Shared Services marks official re-opening

Ribbon cutting at Lambton Shared Services Centre Nov 23, 2022. (Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley, Aamjiwnaang elder Mike Plain and Lambton County Warden Kevin Marriott. Blackburn Media photo by Stephanie Chaves.

A grand re-opening was held Wednesday afternoon at the Lambton Shared Services Centre in downtown Sarnia.

The building, at Christina and George Streets, was the only part of the former Bayside Mall that wasn’t demolished.

Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley joked that he’s seen a lot of transformations at the building over the years.

“I was here in 1983 when we opened the Eaton Centre and I was here years later when we opened the Bayside Mall,” said Bradley. “There is a song, everything dies, that’s a fact and everything that dies sometimes comes back, and that’s what has happened here.”

Lambton Shared Services Centre November, 2022 Blackburn Media photo by Stephanie Chaves

(Lambton Shared Services Centre November, 2022 Blackburn Media photo by Stephanie Chaves.)

Bradley said it’s great to see the project come to fruition.

“It’s a great day for Sarnia, it’s a great day for the county and more importantly it’s a great day for the people who use these services,” said Bradley. “They asked us for a very professional, positive atmosphere to get their needs met in Sarnia-Lambton. That’s the winner of this.”

Lambton Shared Services Centre November, 2022 Blackburn Media photo by Stephanie Chaves

(Lambton Shared Services Centre November, 2022 Blackburn Media photo by Stephanie Chaves)

Lambton County Warden Kevin Marriott said he’s thrilled to see the finished product after years of planning and hard work.

“This is amazing,” said Marriott. “Because it was pretty scary for a while on the planning and negotiating end of it and to see it completed, it’s better than we expected.”

The county entered into a 20-year lease agreement with Seasons Retirement Communities, the owner of the downtown Sarnia property, in 2020, with one of the stipulations being the renovation of the Lambton Shared Services Centre.

The centre houses several departments including Homelessness Prevention and Children Services, Ontario Works, Lambton Circles and Court Services.

Close to 200 employees work out of the building.