Windsor Shows Off Its New City Hall (GALLERY)

Visitors check out the new City Council Chambers at a public opening of the New Windsor City Hall, May 26, 2018. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

The city of Windsor has opened the doors of its new City Hall.

Hundreds of people took advantage of the celebration of Windsor’s 126th birthday to check out the new home of the city’s government, now officially open to the public.

The new City Hall has been open since Tuesday afternoon, after crews worked for several days to move city services and departments from the old City Hall next door.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens participated in a ceremonial ribbon-cutting, attended by his predecessor Eddie Francis, who had expressed his desire to replace the aging old building while he was mayor.

Current and former city councillors also attended, along with LaSalle Mayor Ken Antaya and Windsor-Tecumseh MPP Percy Hatfield.

The new building opens after two years of construction. It replaces the old City Hall, completed in 1956, but retains the same mailing address, 350 City Hall Square W.

Two key features of the new City Hall are on the main floor. Visitors are instantly greeted by the site of the new state-of-the-art City Council chambers, now wide open and visible through a glass wall. Also, a portrait gallery featuring all of Windsor’s mayors is on permanent display.

The council chambers and the city’s customer service department make up most of the first floor. A staircase leads up to a mezzanine on the second floor, where the development services offices are located, along with meeting rooms and city council offices.

The city’s planning and engineering departments make up the third floor, with the treasurer’s office and finance department on the fourth.

The fifth floor consists of the mayor’s office, the office of the chief administrative officer, and the city clerk.

The city’s annual birthday celebration, usually held Victoria Day weekend, was pushed back a week to include the official opening of the new City Hall. Outside in the accompanying park, visitors walked among booths representing city groups and offering refreshments. A stage with live entertainment was also set up.

The first City Council meeting in the new chambers is scheduled for Monday, June 4 at 6pm.