Route will minimize need to take down overhead wires
The foundation has been reinforced; the steel girders it will rest on are in place. All that’s left is to figure out the best way to get the Mohawk Trail School to its new home at the Education Centre being built near Lime Ridge Mall.
Project manager Melissa Cohen-White said while the contractor is still working with Horizon Utilities to finalize route, it will avoid Mohawk Road, taking back streets where possible to minimize the number of overhead wires that need to be taken down.
Presently at the corner of Mohawk and West 15th Street, the 132-year-old, one-room schoolhouse’s distinctive cupola, or bell tower, will be also removed for the move, expected toward the end of this month.
Cohen-White said there have been no surprises during excavation around the school’s foundation and contractor Laurie McCulloch Moving Co. is confident the building is structurally sound enough to withstand the trip.
“They’re professionals. It’s what they do for a living, so you have to trust that they see what they need to see and know that it can be moved,” she said.
A gift from the elementary teachers union to the former Hamilton board in 1967 as part of Canada’s Centennial celebrations, the school will be renovated once placed on a concrete slab behind the Education Centre.
The overall project has a $1-million budget, including for repairs to the roof, restoration of the cupola and some brickwork.
“It’s meant to be seen and have a prominent position,” White-Cohen said of the school’s location at the Education Centre, the new headquarters for the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board. “We think it’ll be a nice addition.”