It looks like the troubled and mostly vacant city-owned Discovery Centre on Hamiltons waterfront is about to find a new tenant.
Pending council approval, the space once home to the failed Sarcoa restaurant, will become the sales centre for 1,500 new dwelling units to be built by the Waterfront Shores Corporation.
The slow moving residential development on Pier 8 is a much anticipated addition to Hamilton’s West Harbour.
The proposed leasing agreement between Waterfront Shores and the city gets its first airing at next weeks meeting of the West Harbour Development Subcommittee. Though financial details will be discussed behind closed doors, the agreement would see Waterfront Shores take over the portion of the Discovery Centre used by the former restaurant. Other portions of the building, including meeting rooms, outdoor patios and the theatre will be retained for public, private or temporary use.
History of the Discovery Centre
The Discovery Centre located by Williams Fresh Cafe, started life as a Parks Canada marine museum. When that failed the building housed Sarcoa restaurant, with arguably one of the city’s best patio settings overlooking Hamilton harbour. Not long into its tenure, Sarcoa became embroiled in a costly lawsuit with the Hamilton Waterfront Trust over noise complaints. Since they vacated,the Discovery Centre has become a mostly empty and forlorn looking space with a million dollar view.
At next weeks meeting of the subcommittee councillors will also consider a long and complicated proposal on how to inject life into other underused portions of the Discovery Centre building and grounds.
It has been eight months since the subcommittee met. So the meaty agenda also contains updates on other west harbour projects.
Construction has slowed on the new Copps Pier park that wraps around the water edge at Pier 8. Though most components are finished, supply chain issues have held up the delivery of handrails and lighting supplies. When those are installed it will open to the public, with a grand opening in the spring.
The city is moving the proposal for a 45 story residential tower on Pier 8 through zoning and official plan amendment applications. A robust public engagement process is promised for this development which is sure to be controversial.
Another city project called Gateway Park on Guise street and Discovery Drive is expected to be tendered soon, with construction projected to be completed by the end of 2022.
Read about the Pier 8 residential development-
Hamilton Waterfront Trust News-