June 12, 2012
When the TransformingVIA website began last year, one of the first articles we published was about Winnipeg Station’s Centennial. The “green” building was coincidentally given a BOMA BESt Level 2 designation at the same time.
And now, another timely coincidence has occurred! Just as we reach the end of Winnipeg’s Union Station’s centennial year, the Government of Canada and VIA Rail have announced a further $6.5 million investment in the Heritage building. The funding is slated for improvements including:
-Renovations to the passenger waiting areas; the proposed new waiting area would be re-oriented to allow for smoother traffic flow through the station. As well, new lighting, flooring and more modern furniture would rejuvenate the space
-New fully accessible public washrooms; the new washrooms would be conveniently located in the rotunda area. The larger washrooms would be fully accessible and would better accommodate the high volume of foot traffic through the station
-Improvement of the East entrance; the renovated entrance would have a wider, centred canopy, new and more welcoming landscaping and a sign tower that would clearly identify the entrance from a distance
-Rotunda refresh; the breathtaking rotunda is the main focus of Winnipeg Heritage station. The high dome would be cleaned, repaired and repainted, giving the station new life
-Various safety improvements; improvements to the security and fire alarm systems mean a safer environment for all.
“The Government of Canada is proud to support projects like this that improve passenger rail and bring social and economic benefits to Canadian communities,” explained Minister of Transport Steven Fletcher, who attended a press conference marking the occasion. “This project is part of our investment to improve VIA Rail’s equipment, infrastructure, and many other stations – an investment that is revitalizing Canada’s passenger rail service.”