The final showpieces of the newly renovated city hall foyer are now in place.
The interactive front entrance now bodes a touchscreen monitor where visitors can access information about the city.
Thursday’s ceremonial reopening of the accessible space culminated with the unveiling of renowned architect Bill White’s scale model of city hall, used in the 1988 rejuvenation, harkening back to a long bygone era.
White said his goal is to use the model to spark youth enthusiasm for the field of architecture.
“We hope that it, combined with the touchscreen, will help to tell Belleville’s history and to inspire the next generation,” White said.
A quick look inside the model, built from pieces of timber reserved from the 1988 build, reveals some of the fine details recreated by White, such as the city’s coat of arms, photos of the mayors who have served the city and an illuminated picture of the 1988 council led by Mayor George Zegouras, who shepherded the project.
Former city councillor Bob Dolan harkened back to 1998 when he sat around the council ring with Zegouras and several others to approve the project.
“Before we started this 1988 renovation everything was panel sheets up throughout the whole building,” Dolan said. “When Bill White came along, it was an amazing improvement.”
The idea of building a new structure was floated in the 1980s, Dolan said.
“But the historical significance of this building was such that they felt that a renovation was the best way to go,” he said of transforming the then two-storey structure into the four floors used today….
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