Espace Centro: full steam ahead

Photo: courtesy of Ville de Sherbrooke

 

In the last year, the face of Wellington Street South in Sherbrooke has changed quite a bit, including demolition of a multi-level parking garage and hotel to make way for the Espace Centro project led by the EXP | CUSTEAU consortium.

Espace Centro by the numbers:

  • $75 million invested in a project to revitalize a stretch of Wellington Street South in Sherbrooke
  • 50% partnership between EXP and Groupe Custeau
  • 2 towers, one with 10 stories (developer tower) and the other with 6 (QG tower)
  • 200,000 square feet total
  • 1 tower housing the Quartier général de l’entrepreneuriat
  • 1 public plaza of over 40,000 square feet
  • 1 new home for 200 employees from EXP’s Sherbrooke office on Vimy

To learn more about how this project is shaping up, we spoke with Daniel Nappert, a project manager at our Sherbrooke office.

On April 17, 2019, the EXP | CUSTEAU project proposal was unanimously accepted by the Sherbrooke city council. Have any changes been made to the original plans since then?

When the proposal was accepted by the City, we went over the plans with the city and our partner, Groupe Custeau, and made some changes and improvements, but we tried to stay true to the spirit of the original proposal as much as possible. For instance, the initial plan had a pedestrian bridge between the two towers, but after we reviewed it with the City, we removed the bridge to avoid obstructing the view of the neighborhood east of Wellington.

How’s work going? Is everything moving along on schedule?

Work is well underway. The pandemic put us a few weeks behind schedule, but we’ve still got our eyes on the prize, and the grand opening is still set for 2022. Right now, we’re working on the four-level parking garage, which has 725 parking spots, and we’re planning to start construction on the towers in the spring of 2021. The Quartier Général tower is going up first, and it’s going to be built in parallel with the developer tower, where the new EXP offices will be housed. We’re looking forward to moving on to the next phase of construction!

How is the project going to accommodate employees who bike to work or who drive an electric vehicle or are considering buying one?

I’ve got good news for them! There’s going to be bike parking in the parking garage itself, so employees can lock up safely during the workday. For the electric vehicle owners out there, we’re adding 10 regular charging stations and two rapid charging stations.

How can we follow the progress of this project?

The City of Sherbrooke has a webpage up with real-time updates on construction. Just go to www.sherbrooke.ca/wellsud. If you want to see worksite photos, click the “Chantier en images” tab.

Hats off to our teams working on this historic project in downtown Sherbrooke!

Photo: Ville de Sherbrooke