Bless this City project underway, donations still needed

Pino DiTullio, Bill Steele and Mack Steele of Portage Mutual Insurance and Steele’s Insurance recently donated $5,000 to the project. Photo submitted.

It has been a neglected area for many years, St. James and St. Brendan Anglican Church has stepped in to make this property into a positive space for the community.

The church purchased the property at the corner of King St. and Charlotte St. in Port Colborne with the hopes of building a park and using the buildings, the former Serpentarium and a former clubhouse for a motorcycle gang, for youth and community outreach projects.

“In earlier days, this was known as The Steele Block and housed the Citizen Press as well as some other businesses,” said Rosemary Armstrong, a volunteer involved in the revitalization project. “In the past few years, the entire corner has been neglected by the owners and we hope to improve the property by building a park and by using the buildings for youth and community outreach.”

The project is underway at this time, fundraising continues as the community space is being developed. Some of the funds have been raised through government grants but more is needed. The goal is $500,000.

Recently, members of the business community have stepped up to help with the project.

Greg and Rosemari Poisson from Canalside Restaurant and Kitchen Store donated $1,500 for to be used for the Bless This City project. Photo submitted

Greg and Rosemari Poisson from Canalside Restaurant and Kitchen Store recently gave $1,500 for the project.

“It’s good to see something positive happening in Port, that the green space on this forgotten property will be a welcome addition to the downtown and that it’s good to see local citizens taking ownership of this much needed improvement downtown,” they said.

Mike Allinson from Allinson’s Department Store. Photo submitted

“This project is a win-win for the neighbourhood and that he is so happy to see some positive things being done with the property,” said Mike Allinson from Allinson’s Department Store.

Alex and Rada Bobic from the Belmont Hotel added a $1,500 donation as well.

“We are so happy to contribute to this project that will beautiful the corner and make a real difference in Port Colborne,” they said.

Steele’s Insurance along with their partner company Portage Mutual Insurance recently donated $5,000 towards the project.

“I am happy to see something positive being done with this property which he remembers was at one time known as the Steele Block and owned by the Steele family,” said Bill Steele of Steele’s Insurance. “He has been encouraged that St.James and St. Brendan have taken on the project to build a park as well as an outreach centre for youth in Port Colborne, something that resonates with his ideals of helping youth.”

“I like this project because the park idea reminds him of the town squares in Europe where people can gather for relaxation and socialization,” said Pino DiTullio from Portage Mutual.

Donations from individuals and the business community are still needed to help with the project.

To track the progress of the project, find out more information or to arrange a donation, visit the website. 

Alex and Rada Bobic from the Belmont Hotel recently made a $1,500 donation to the project. Photo submitted



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