Parks Canada

Parks Canada

February 25, 2010 15:00 ET

Government of Canada Invests in Tourism Infrastructures at Sault Ste. Marie Canal, Fort St. Joseph National and Ermatinger Clergue Historic Sites

Canada's Economic Action Plan at work in Ontario

SAULT STE. MARIE, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 25, 2010) - Mr. Guy Lauzon, Member of Parliament for Stormont – Dundas – South Glengarry, on behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today announced major investments at Sault Ste. Marie Canal and Fort St. Joseph National Historic Sites. Also, on behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, Mr. Lauzon, announced funding for the Ermatinger Clergue National Historic Site revitalization. These projects are part of Canada's Economic Action Plan.

"This investment of up to $3.5 million in these two iconic tourism destinations in the Algoma Region will not only help preserve and improve these treasured places, it will also provide local construction jobs and economic activity which will help encourage tourism in northern Ontario," said Mr. Lauzon of the investments in the Sault Ste. Marie Canada and Fort St. Joseph National Historic Sites.

The announcement includes up to $2.6 million from the Economic Action Plan's Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to support ongoing navigation by draining the recreational lock at the Sault Ste. Marie Canal National Historic Site to permit access for inspection and repair of historic and contemporary assets. At the same time, the lock baffle wall will be reconstructed and water infiltration into the powerhouse will be addressed. Up to $880,000 from the Fund will be used to improve the condition of the access road into Fort St. Joseph National Historic Site.

"The Government of Canada is investing in infrastructure improvements to provide outstanding and enhanced visitor services in Canada's national historic sites," said Minister Prentice. "These improvements will provide tangible benefits for the sites, their many visitors, and local communities."

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $1.8 million under the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund (formerly Cultural Spaces Canada). This program of the Department of Canadian Heritage seeks to improve physical conditions for artistic creativity and arts presentation or exhibition. It is also designed to increase access for Canadians to performing, visual, and media arts, and to museum collections and heritage displays.

Funding to the Ermatinger Clergue National Historic Site will support the renovation of the Old Stone House exhibition space, as well as the creation of a 6,500-square-foot Heritage Discovery Centre. This new facility will house storage and exhibition space, a multimedia theatre, offices, and a gift shop. Today, the Ermatinger Clergue National Historic Site is home to two of the oldest pre-Confederation stone buildings northwest of Toronto, as well as a collection of historical artifacts and exhibitions.

"We are proud to invest in the revitalization of the Ermatinger Clergue National Historic Site," said Minister Moore. "This site has played an instrumental role in the development of Sault Ste. Marie, our third largest city in Northern Ontario. By reinvigorating Ermatinger Clergue, we are stimulating the local economy and preserving essential pieces of our history for future generations."

Tourism represents a significant economic opportunity for Canada and, for this reason, has been targeted in Canada's Economic Action Plan. In 2007, the tourism sector contributed approximately $28.6 billion to the Canadian economy and employed 653,400 Canadians. Canada's Economic Action Plan is our government's plan to stimulate our economy during the global recession by restoring confidence and supporting workers and families.

Canada's Economic Action Plan sets aside $374 million for improvements of facilities and protection of Canada's national parks and national historic sites. As a result of these investments in national parks and national historic sites, many skilled men and women in construction, tourism and conservation sectors will be hired in every province and territory of Canada.

For additional information, please see the accompanying backgrounder at under Media Room.

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