The Building Redevelopment Action Group (“BRAG”) members have continued to work diligently throughout the past year towards ensuring a Spring 2013 start for the Open Doors renovations. Considerable time has been spent working with Sturgess Architecture in order to finalize the many details involved in the architectural drawings and the construction work specifications for the project. We have also worked with a variety of consultants to obtain pricing for various elements of the renovations and to complete design aspects, particularly in regard to the mechanical, electrical and structural upgrades to be undertaken. In addition work has been undertaken to obtain pricing for a variety of items including new furnishings, lighting and sound systems.
In the past year BRAG has put into place a financial planning model to ensure accurate recording of funds received and expenses paid, and to permit the tracking of invoices to ensure that they fall within budget.
On the matter of fundraising, we are grateful to have continued to receive donations to the Open Doors campaign throughout the past year. We were also fortunate in receiving a $125,000.00 grant from the Province to be applied towards the cost of the new lower level washroom facilities. We have applied for further grants and hope to know the outcome of those applications shortly.
As of the date of writing this report we are advised by Sturgess Architecture that the project will go out to tender on January 31, 2013. Four contractors have been invited to bid on the project. Tender is scheduled to close on February 21, 2013. Once tender closes BRAG will then review the bids received. At that point we will know, for the first time, the actual costs for the elements of the renovation work. BRAG will then be in a position to evaluate actual project costs against funds available.
Even if we receive additional grants, our preliminary estimates at this point put us behind what we anticipate we will need to accomplish the entire scope of work. A final financial appeal will be made to the congregation once we have received the tender bids and have assessed costs against funds received. Any final shortfall will be dealt with by removing or revising portions of the renovation plan.
The construction work is scheduled to start at the end of March and is expected to be completed by September 8, 2013. We are very grateful that one of our parishioners, Kalum Galle, has volunteered to act as BRAG’s construction representative during the construction process.
Finally, with respect to the Memorial Hall we are continuing to work with the City to explore funding for options for the redevelopment of this space as an arts incubator space.
We thank everyone for their continued support of the Open Doors project. We especially wish to thank all of the members of BRAG for their hard work and dedication over the past year.