Downtown Plaza To Be New “Urban Core”


The Downtown Association Board of Directors, Staff and Membership would like to thank and congratulate the City of Sault Ste. Marie’s approval of 2.5 Million dollars to be allocated to the development of a “people place” in the heart of Sault Ste. Marie’s Downtown core.

A joint effort was made in 2018 by the Corp. of the City of Sault Ste. Marie and Downtown Association, championed by the Chamber of Commerce to bring Destination Development’s Roger Brooks to Sault Ste. Marie to assess the Downtown and surrounding area. One of  Brooks’ key recommendations was to build a public plaza space within the downtown core that would be active 250 days of the year regardless of weather conditions.

To learn more about the Destination Development Associations strong endorsement of public spaces please visit:

This space will be used for creating a new avenue for the community in the urban core, a vibrant, multi-use civic location that will bridge downtown Queen Street with Sault Ste. Marie’s first class waterfront, a major priority of both the Downtown Association and the Downtown Development Team within the framework of FutureSSM.

We look forward to an enhancement of our city and seek patience in the augmentation that will occur within our Downtown core. The Chair, Board of Directors and Staff all believe this project will further the Association’s vision to aid in the creation of a dynamic community that is vibrant, healthy and a  prosperous destination where people want to be and want to invest.

About the Downtown Association: Our Business Improvement Area is an organization that allows Queen St E (from Pim to Dennis) business people and commercial property owners and tenants join together and, with support of the City of Sault Ste Marie, organize, finance, and carry out physical improvements and promote economic development in our district.

If members or the general public have more questions about public people places join staff and representation of the Downtown Association Board of Directors and FutureSSM to view ‘The Power of Public Plaza’s’ webinar by Destination development followed by community


When: June 11th @ 7pm
Where: Sault Ste. Marie Downtown Association – 496 Queen St. E.


  1. It’s great to see the Downtown Association SSM looking forward to a new public events space to bring people to the core. As few events as the arena has, it’s still noticeable to see what events do for the shops & restaurants in the area. I’ve often wondered why the arena is so under utilized. Why aren’t larger concerts held outdoors like they do at Kewadin? Use the arena for facilities and vendors on the floor indoors. Or how about a new track & field with grandstand on the Gateway site. Great festival site on the waterfront. Bring the people downtown, surrounded by hotels, parking and transit. 2.5mil could go a long way towards making suitable these already City of Sault Ste. Marie owned properties into large scale gathering places.

  2. Connecting the waterfront to Queen Street, and filling it in with people who live, work and play in the downtown, AND giving those people the opportunity to get around that ENTIRE AREA from Pim Street to Huron with FREE, regularly scheduled People Mover buses (Trolley-looking would be nice) 365 days of the year would be FANTASTIC!!

    I guess they’re talking about developing the entire Dorans Brewery/City Employee Parking Lot/Rotary Green Space area between Sring and Brock Streets south of Bay?

    Okay, but the FREE, regularly scheduled People Mover Buses along Queen, Bay, and maybe St. Mary’s River Drive and Foster Drive instead of Bay along that stretch of road, is a much HIGHER PRIORITY in terms of getting new downtown apartment buildings developed, and having more Sault residents spend time in our downtown IMO.

    PLUS, it will help the rest of our bus system tremendously allowing for more comprehensive routes outside of the downtown because drivers will now have the time to cover those routes because they all won’t have to race to the downtown terminal. They can ALL drop passengers off on the perimeter of the downtown, and then get immediately back to servicing their non-downtown routes.

    Oh yeah.

    We’re going to need TOP-NOTCH Bus Sheters at every bus stop on this Frre People Mover Downtown Route.

    Both citizens and visitors to our wonderful city should LOVE that!!

    My 2 cents.

    Citizen Mark Brown

  3. The downtown is looking Fabulous I live on East Street and have witnessed The Downtown Association hard at work last 2 years I have been living in this beautiful city

    • Isn’t it awfully shortsighted of the city to not resurface Queen street in the downtown area, a street that has been rougher than many unmaintained bush roads for years. Visitors think that the city is a poor slum when they drive down it and get bounced all over in their vehicles.

  4. What the downtown needs , now that walmart is closing, is an affordable grocery store like a no frills or food basic. There are so many seniors downtown without vehicles that relied on going to walmart.

  5. So many revitalizing projects that have been planned for our City, paid for planed suggestions, seem to get put on the back burner, if it happens wonderful, till then personally not getting overly excited

  6. I have watched so many plans that were going to revitalize downtown and make it a happening people place for at least 3 decades….maybe even 4. The only thing that has been reasonably successful is reclaiming the waterfront(excrpt for the pld tank farm site) and putting in the boardwalk. I’ll believe it when I see it….not going to get excited.

  7. Why not use thar money and create an indoor plaza that can be used all year with glass ceilings and walls overlooking the St. Mary’s River and live greenery and tables and coffee shops and eateries, etc, etc, in the old Sears section of the Station Mall. Mr. Shoemaker, how about it?

  8. Did everyone forget we have the BONDAR PAVILION…which…by the way is under utilized. Why would this new venture be any different?

  9. Of course, we’ll have the usual naysayers complaining why money is being spent on this, yet they will still complain how there’s no progress in the Soo!

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