IMPERIAL — Two white canopies and a food truck occupied the southwestern intersection of Tenth Street and Imperial Avenue during the groundbreaking ceremony of Imperial's newest apartment complex on Monday, November 7.
Located on the northwestern lot of land opposite of the Subway restaurant, the event had elected officials, members of the construction company’s leadership, and law enforcement personnel in attendance.
A shorter table provided a variety of pastries to attendees free of charge. A podium faced the rowed chairs from the south side of the white canopies. Behind the podium the audience could view multiple construction vehicles and mounds of dirt with shovels holding white helmets in the tip of their handles.
Everyone present at the event had to sign in and were given the option to wear name tag stickers to help attendees network. Notable attendees at the groundbreaking included city officials and members of the public.
The first city official to give a speech to the audience was Imperial Mayor Geoff Dale, who warmly greeted everyone before the ceremony started. “Today we break ground on a sixty-eight unit affordable housing community for our senior population. The very first such project in Imperial. This special community has been designed to meet the needs of low income seniors and once completed will fit well within Imperial’s downtown area,” Dale explained.
Imperial Village will also have solar panels throughout the facility. “This state of the art system will provide lower utility costs to all residents of Imperial Village. At the end of this project, sixty-eight low income seniors will be housed in their own one-bedroom apartment and call Imperial their home," said Dale.
Dale added a few recollections about what used to occupy the land decades before. According to him, many businesses used to stand where the new apartments will be in a few years, such as Wendel Trucking and a restaurant called "Cookie's". “This location across the street used to be a gas station back in the 1930s. ... These things I’ll always have near and dear to my heart. It’s going to be a beautiful addition to our community and even better to the elderly citizens that are going to be using it," said Dale.
After additional congratulatory speeches were given, the elected officials in attendance posed for photos.
Dale spoke afterwards regarding when the public should expect the new apartment complex to be completed. “The completion date is expected to be in the year 2024,” said Dale.