Highlights 2021-22.jpg
Town of Grand Falls Community highlights for 2021 and 2022 

Grand Falls, NB. (February 17, 2022) - As the Town of Grand Falls moves into a productive year of planning and executing projects throughout the community, many positive and successful community developments occurred over 2021, along with projects currently in progress for 2022. To highlight, a few of these achievements include:

2021 Projects & Impacts on the Community 

Centennial Park lights 

  • Part of a larger revitalization project that has seen improvements made to many sectors, including sports and tourism.

  • Revitalization of the Centennial Park included paved tennis courts, construction of a splash park, upgrades to the Richelieu pool and building, improvements to the infield and replacement of the lights of the Veterans' field.

  • The revitalization of the area will be beneficial for residents as well as for tourism development.

  • Veteran Field was home of the first baseball game played under the lights in New Brunswick (Presque Isle, USA vs Grand Falls Cataracts June -1951). Now with a grass infield, it is recognized as one of the best baseball diamonds in northern New Brunswick

  • Interesting fact: although the price tag for these lights was around $350,000, it cost $0 to taxpayers since it was completely funded through a utilities program. 

Status

Completed

Cost

$383,331 

Major reconstruction of Broadway Blvd.

  • Replacement of outdated water, sewer, and storm infrastructure.

  • Revitalization of the downtown business core to improve the Business Improvement Area and attract new businesses.

  • Improvements made to sidewalks and business entrances to accommodate pedestrians and guests as well as improve access to and from tourist attractions situated at both ends of the downtown core.

  • Interesting fact: Since we were able to secure 4,8 million in provincial and federal funding, the cost to the municipality was reduced to 1,6 million

Completed

$6,394,000

Grand Falls Fire Station

  • Replace outdated current fire station.

  • State of the art equipment to better protect our town and surrounding communities.

  • Designed to meet post-disaster specs.

In progress

$7,000,000

Skate Park

  • Promote and integrate skateboarding and other related sports in our recreational scene.

  • Ensure a safe place for kids and adults to practice skateboarding.

  • Part of the centennial park revitalization. 

  • Creating a safe place for kids and families in the community to stay active.

Completed

$426,000

2022 Projects & Impacts on the Community 

Snowshoe, cross-country, bike and walking trail improvements 

  • Cycling trail special committee was put in place in the summer of 2021 to look into expanding and improving our biking and pedestrian trails to make them more user-friendly, accessible and safe for all users.

    • Project consists of expanding and widening the trail, working the ground, redoing the asphalt, and marking the trail to indicate the road to follow for cyclists and pedestrians.

  • Kahoutek committee overseeing winter sports activities (snowshoe, cross-country and fat bike) in our region working to continually improve our trail systems, making it some of the best in the province.

  • Colebrook bike committee overseeing the practice of mountain biking and trails in our region.

  • All these initiatives enable our town to meet its goal of having a healthy, physically active, safe, inclusive, and affordable community. 

Status

In progress

Cost

To be determined (TBD)

Tourism initiatives

  • Marina Ad-hoc committee put in place - Fall of 2021

    • Mandate to analyze the needs and present ideas to council on how to add value and boost tourism potential to the Marina and surrounding areas.

    • The municipality is in the process of hiring a consulting firm to explore the feasibility of the proposed projects and provide an estimate of the costs involved in order to prioritize the projects that will be carried out.

 

  • Participation and hiring of a consultant through the Accelerated Market Readiness Program.

    • The focus will be on how to add value to existing tourism products and experiences, create novelty, get a better return from visitors and also find ways to extend the tourism season by working with tourism operators.       

    • A local committee has been created for planning and execution of this initiative. 

In progress

To be determined (TBD)

Revitalization of the old provincial court building

  • Once renovations are complete, the building will house the Town of Grand Falls Police department as well as the Land Use Planning department.

  • Increased visibility and accessibility to the public.

  • Provides access to additional office space needed by the departments.

In progress

To be determined (TBD)

Local governance reform

  • Form partnerships with neighbouring communities to enhance the quality of life and ensure that our communities remain vibrant and sustainable for years to come.

  • Collaborative meetings with surrounding municipalities and provincial facilitator, Lise Ouellette are ongoing, and the dialogue is progressing well.

In progress

None

Special events and activities

  • Special event committee put in place in the fall of 2021 to organize activities and special events for all ages in our community throughout the year.

  • The committee will focus on creative and fun activities for residents and tourists alike.

In progress

None

Revitalization fund to upgrade some existing tourism infrastructure

  • Focus on upgrading our tourism infrastructure. 

  • Replace picnic tables and benches.

  • Build additional shelters.                                        

  • Repair retaining wall at the Falls and Gorge campground.          

  • Build and install outdoor fitness equipment near walking trail. 

  • Interesting fact: although the price tag for these improvements is estimated at around $125,000, the cost to the municipality will only be $31,250 since it was funded through a government revitalization program.                                                                                          

In progress

$125,000

 “Looking into 2022, it will be a very busy year as the council has many projects planned for the development of the community. As many know, municipalities in the province are going through a major municipal reform and a lot of work will be going into this venture. The town council, along with myself, hopes there will be a genuine meeting of the minds and positive progression into a new year and a new future for our communities after this reform is completed. Overall, I’m looking forward to working alongside the community of Grand Falls and surrounding municipalities to maximize our area’s fullest potential” states Mayor Marcel Deschênes.

On the human resources side, the Town of Grand Falls recently named a new Chief Administrative Officer as well as two new members to fill the roles of Director of public works and Director of human resources and payroll services to help better serve the community by enhancing effective processing of internal and external projects. 

Éric Gagnon

Chief Administrative Officer

Mr. Gagnon has been working in the field of land use planning for the Grand Falls region since 2000. He succeeds to Mr. Peter Michaud, who served the Town of Grand Falls for 30 years, including 17 years as General Manager (CAO). His planning knowledge and leadership skills have enabled the Town of Grand Falls to provide land use services to the surrounding communities of Drummond, Saint-André and Saint-Léonard. Vice-President and founding member of the NB Planning Officers Association, he also served on provincial committees which were instrumental in the development of the Green Paper and White Paper on Local Governance in New Brunswick. His previous experience with amalgamations will be fundamental in the creation of the new entity with our neighbouring communities in 2022. In his personal time, Mr. Gagnon is very much involved in his community being the president and founding member of the COLEBROOKE Bike Club Inc., and director of the COLEBROOKE bike racing team.  Since 2020, he has also served as president of the Kahoutek Cross-Country Ski Club, which is committed to ensuring the continuity of cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and fat biking in our region.

"We are excited to welcome Mr. Gagnon to his new role. His sense of leadership, dedication to the proper functioning of the municipality, great work ethic and his professionalism are just a few qualities that make him the ideal candidate for this position and we have no doubt that he will be able to carry out his mandate brilliantly," said Mayor Marcel Deschênes. 

 

 

Patrick Daigle

Director of public works

Holder of a degree in civil engineering technology and employed by the Town of Grand Falls as a technologist since June 2021, Patrick Daigle becomes the new director of public works. His knowledge and skills in the field of public works along with his leadership will be assets to meet the requirements of this position. In addition to his background in the technical field, Patrick also has experience in personnel management and administration, having led the Referees for Grand Falls Minor Hockey Association from 2018-19 and serving as an assistant coach for the PTA Élites Hockey Club from 2013-2021. His autonomy, sense of initiative and team spirit will undoubtedly allow him to meet the challenges and reap success in his new role.

 

For his part, the town’s general manager, Éric Gagnon, states that Patrick Daigle will play a major role in the management and maintenance of municipal infrastructure and roads. His knowledge and strong work ethic will allow him to meet challenges and lead the public works department in line with the expectations of the municipal council and citizens. 

 

Jessica Ouellette

Director of human resources and payroll services

A young professional and mother, Jessica Ouellette holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a major in accounting and a concentration in human resources and becomes the new director of human resources and payroll services for the Town of Grand Falls. Her experience working with a multinational company as well as for the federal public service, combined with her knowledge in the field of human resources management, her ease of learning and strong motivation makes her the ideal candidate for this position.

 

The town’s general manager, Éric Gagnon is delighted with Jessica Ouellette’s arrival on the team and adds that her energy and professionalism will complement this new position, essential to the proper functioning of the municipality. 

ABOUT GRAND FALLS

Grand Falls is a picturesque town of approximately 5,500 residents, nestled between the borders of Maine and Québec and home to the largest waterfall east of Niagara Falls. Its downtown Broadway Boulevard is filled with a rich historical heritage, restaurants and shops and has a particular cachet being the widest main street in eastern Canada. One of New-Brunswick’s best kept secrets!

For more information or media inquiries please contact:

Éric Gagnon, CAO

475-7777 ext. 2

info@grandsault.ca

 

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