Smith Street realignment at Notre Dame Avenue planned for this year
Changes to $10.6M street-renewal project would expand Odeon Park, connect it to Burton Cummings Theatre
The City of Winnipeg plans to realign Smith Street at Notre Dame Avenue this year to enlarge a park outside the Burton Cummings Theatre and connect it to the live performance venue.
The city plans to close off a stretch of Smith Street outside the the Burt and create new turning lanes onto Notre Dame, the public works department says in a report published on Wednesday.
Winnipeg was already planning to rebuild the street for $10.6 million when theatre owner True North Sports and Entertainment approached the city about realigning the way it connects to Notre Dame.
True North suggested the change in order to expand Odeon Park, which currently occupies a triangle of land surrounded by Smith Street, King Street and Notre Dame Avenue, and to reduce the potential for motor vehicle collisions with theatre patrons, the report states.
"The perceived benefits include improved safety and functionality for patrons of events at the [theatre] as well as future enhancements to Odeon Park which is located within the Smith Street and Notre Dame Avenue rights-of-way," public works engineer Colin Titchkosky writes in the report.
The change would see new turning lanes run through a portion of the existing Odeon Park, which would then be shifted to the west and enlarged. No land acquisition will be required to make the change, the report states.
Changes to the street renewal, including engineering, will cost $400,000, but that will be absorbed by the existing budget for the Smith Street renewal project, the report states.
The city is working on a plan to build new amenities on Odeon Park, consulting with True North, the Downtown Winnipeg Business Improvement Zone and CentreVenture, the city's downtown development agency, the report states.
That redevelopment could cost $600,000, potentially using funds already set aside in the city budget. The Downtown BIZ would manage the park, the report states.
In the meantime, new sidewalks and landscaping will be placed alongside the new park.