Fence, ramp, green space: changes for the Charlottetown Advisory Center

PEI’s social development minister says changes are underway at the Charlottetown outreach center – more to come – now that the province has taken ownership of the former curling club.

The PEI Community Outreach Center provides support for people looking for financial support, advice, employment, food and housing.

“It’s a place for people on the street,” said Brad Trivers, Minister for Social Development and Housing. “So we want to make sure it’s a comfortable place for them.”

Construction of a new privacy fence is currently underway to better separate the property from nearby houses and apartments on Euston Street. Making the building more accessible for people with disabilities is a major priority, Trivers said.

“We want to address the accessibility issues. So we’re looking for ramps and things like that that will allow people to get to the first floor, ”Trivers said.

Contracts for tender

In addition to privacy fences, there are plans to create “green spaces” on the currently paved parking lot in front of the two-storey red brick landmark.

Trivers said there are also plans to improve accessibility to the building and create additional green space in front of the building.

“There has to be space outside the center for people to smoke comfortably. There are a lot of customers who smoke and they need a seat for that, ”said Trivers.

The advice center must also be able to offer more advice, said Trivers.

The government is taking the lead from a working group of around 15 agencies that direct the work of the center, the minister said.

This working group includes the Canadian Mental Health Association, the John Howard Society and the Native Council of PEI.

The orders for the renovation work go to a public tendering process. The costs of the various projects have yet to be determined, said Trivers.

Social Development and Housing Secretary Brad Trivers said the working group – made up of partners overseeing the operation of the center – had been talking about the need for more green spaces. (Brian Higgins / CBC)

“We’re going to make the changes we need and feel we have the money to do it,” said Trivers.

The fate of the actual ice stock rinks in the former curling club remains uncertain. According to the minister, the concrete track area is potentially high-maintenance and has no immediate functional purpose.

In the past, some neighbors had complained about the disruptive behavior of people who used the facility, but an open house hosted by the outreach center appears to have fixed some fences, Trivers said.

“The vast majority of the feedback has been positive and we will continue to move in that direction,” said Trivers.

He added that the outreach center could potentially host another open house in the future.

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