With Canada’s sesquicentennial just around the corner, Parks Canada will offer free admission to all National Parks and Historic Sites during the entire 2017 calendar year as a celebratory gift to its visitors.
Today, it was Parks Canada receiving the gift.
Mark Gerretsen: “I am very excited to announce that Parks Canada is investing close to 10 million dollars in Parks Canada locations in Kingston and the surrounding area.”
Fort Henry, Bellevue House, Kingston Fortification Sites and Thousand Islands National Park will split the 10 million dollar investment.
Mark Gerretsen: “Fortifications National Historic Site that once protected the beautiful waterfront from our neighbours to the south. Depending on the outcome of this fall’s election, we might need to rely on that again – I’m kidding!”
Kidding aside, the funding means big things for the region.
Bellevue House, Fort Henry and Kingston Fortification Sites, which include Shoal and Murney towers will use their portions for infrastructure upgrades.
Hugh Ostrom: “They deteriorate over time and regular maintenance is an essential part of that work. Obviously funding like this doesn’t come around every day so we’re really excited to have this opportunity.”
Thousand Islands National Park will receive just under one million and a half to revitalise a campground and day-use park.
This on the heels of a 7 million dollar funding announcement before the last federal election.
Jeff Leggo: “It’s very exciting. It means we can have a look at our service offering, we can improve it and expand the kind of visitation that comes to see us at the park.”
The funds also helped Parks Canada purchase land along the St. Lawrence River to expand Thousand Islands National Park. A bigger footprint, to celebrate a big milestone in hopes of having big turnouts.