CONSTRUCTION OF ST. THOMAS CONSOLIDATED COURTHOUSE OFFICIALLY BEGINS

ST. THOMAS, ON, June 30, 2011 /CNW/ - The Honourable Chris Bentley, Attorney General, and the Honourable Steve Peters, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario and MPP for Elgin-Middlesex-London, today celebrated the official groundbreaking for the new St. Thomas Consolidated Courthouse.

The new courthouse will be constructed on Wellington Street on the site of the historic Elgin County Courthouse, which will be incorporated into the new facility. The new building will consolidate St. Thomas's two courts: the Superior Court of Justice, temporarily located on Silver Street, and the Ontario Court of Justice, located on Curtis Street.

The new courthouse will improve access to justice for the County of Elgin by increasing the number of available courtrooms and will provide better access and security while improving health and safety standards.

As a part of the government's commitment to creating and promoting energy conservation in Ontario, the new facility will be built to Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) Silver standard, which focuses on energy efficiency, healthy indoor environments and reduced greenhouse emissions. The building will feature barrier-free public access to courtrooms, infrared hearing assistance and barrier-free witness stands and jury boxes.

The courthouse construction project will provide a boost to the regional economy by creating and supporting hundreds of jobs. At the peak of construction, it is estimated that 120 workers will be on site daily. Construction of the new courthouse is expected to be completed in 2014.

Infrastructure Ontario is working with the Ministry of the Attorney General to develop the new courthouse. Infrastructure Ontario is a Crown corporation dedicated to delivering some of the province's larger and more complex infrastructure renewal projects, on time and on budget; managing one of the largest real estate portfolios in Canada and providing real estate services, such as asset management, and property and land management; and providing the public sector and not-for-profit organizations with long-term financing to renew public infrastructure.

Visit www.infrastructureontario.ca for more information.

Quotes:

Honourable Chris Bentley, Attorney General
"The conversion of the historic Elgin County Courthouse into a contemporary state-of-the-art facility bridges the past and the future. By consolidating all court services under one roof, access to justice will be improved and the needs of the St. Thomas community will be met for years to come."

Hon. Bob Chiarelli, Minister of Infrastructure
"The St. Thomas Consolidated Courthouse project is a prime example of our government's commitment to investing in infrastructure across Ontario. Now that construction is underway, the courthouse project will create new jobs and spur economic development that will benefit everyone in the St. Thomas area."

SOURCE Infrastructure Ontario

For further information:

Tom Boreskie
Infrastructure Ontario
(416) 212-6447
Brendan Crawley
Communications Branch
Ministry of the Attorney General
(416) 326-2210

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