Parks Canada

Parks Canada

August 26, 2009 12:18 ET

Canada's Economic Action Plan Invests in Heritage Infrastructure at Walker Theatre and Grey Nuns' Convent National Historic Sites of Canada

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Aug. 26, 2009) - The Government of Canada is providing infrastructure funding to the Walker Theatre and to the Grey Nuns' Convent National Historic Sites of Canada, today announced Mr. Rod Bruinooge, Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South, on behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada. Today's announcement is part of Canada's Economic Action Plan to stimulate Canada's economy during the global recession. The Economic Action Plan includes major investments in national historic sites as a means of stimulating growth in the tourism sector.

"Winnipeg offers many rich experiences and interesting historic treasures," said Mr. Bruinooge. "The Walker Theatre and Grey Nuns' Convent are of great historic value to the local community and they offer a wonderful opportunity to experience and learn from our diverse history and heritage."

Through Parks Canada's National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program, the Government of Canada will be contributing $425,000 to support conservation and restoration projects at the Walker Theatre (which operates as the Burton Cummings Theatre for the Performing Arts). The Grey Nuns' Convent (which operates as the Musee de Saint-Boniface Museum) will receive $50,000 for the conservation project that will address the rapidly deteriorating eaves troughs and downspouts, and the west and north entrance porches.

"These projects will help their local communities provide attractions of choice for visitors," said Minister Prentice. "In our Economic Action Plan, we recognize just how important history, heritage and tourism are to the economy, and the important role that our Cost-Sharing Program will play in support of local economies, as well as to the fabric of national historic sites."

"The volunteer Board of the Walker Theatre would like to thank the Government of Canada for its generous support," said Mr. Jack Harper, Chair, Walker Theatre Performing Arts Group Inc. "Located at the gateway to the Exchange District National Historic Site, the theatre is an important architectural and cultural icon that attracts residents and visitors alike to this spectacular live performance venue. This contribution will help restore the theatre to its former splendour as the 'Palace on the Prairie' as it was once described."

"Le Musee de Saint-Boniface Museum (Grey Nuns') has always regarded this building as our primary artefact," said Dr. Philippe Mailhot, Director, Musee de Saint-Boniface Museum. "This support will help protect the historical fabric and appearance of the structure's exterior and reassures us that assistance is available when required."

National historic sites contribute to tourism in over 400 communities across Canada through direct spending, visitor spending and spin-off economic activity. The Parks Canada National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program, with a budget of $20 million provided in part by Canada's Economic Action Plan, reflects the government's desire to support job creation by providing funding for conservation of national historic sites. This program provides opportunities for many construction and conservation professionals to work on historic places across the country.

Parks Canada's National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program is a contribution program whereby up to 50% of eligible costs incurred in the conservation and presentation of a national historic site are paid by the Program. Eligible recipients include other levels of government, not-for-profit organizations and not-for-profit aboriginal organizations.

Parks Canada works to ensure that Canada's historic and natural heritage is presented and protected for the enjoyment, education and appreciation of all Canadians, today and in the future.

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Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of the Environment
    Frederic Baril
    Press Secretary
    Parks Canada
    Media Relations