Free Lockage for Canada Day on Ontario's Historic Canals

Continuing the Trend of Investment in the Trent-Severn Waterway and Rideau Canal

PETERBOROUGH, On, June 26, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today announced that in celebration of Canada Day lockage on Ontario's historic canals will be free all day on July 1 for the first time. This will help attract boaters and visitors to the many opportunities available on these waterways and in the many communities along them. Free lockage will include all stations on the Trent-Severn Waterway and the Rideau Canal.

The 2015 navigation season for Ontario's historic canals has already been exceptional with historic investments by the Government of Canada and an increase in boating numbers.

This month, the Government of Canada announced infrastructure investments totalling more than $39 million for the Rideau Canal and more than $285 million for the Trent-Severn Waterway.  This record investment will ensure the care and preservation of these treasured national historic sites and UNESCO World Heritage Site for use and enjoyment of future generations.

For the month of May, the number of vessels travelling through the Trent-Severn Waterway system increased 34 percent and the number of vessels mooring increased 51 percent over last year. On the Rideau Canal, the number of vessels travelling through the system increased 32 percent and the number of vessels mooring increased 20 percent compared to 2014. The increased use of canals means economic benefits for local communities and businesses and is due in part to recent investment in increased service levels and active promotions.

Visitors travelling by land can also take advantage of new attractions and services offered on both the Trent-Severn Waterway and Rideau Canal including: oTENTiks, Red Chairs, and Voyageur Canoe tours at Ottawa Locks and at the Peterborough Lift Lock. Other services at select lockstations include new showers, canoe docks, firewood and ice sales.

For more information, visit www.pc.gc.ca/canals and click on "Visitor Information" under the canal of interest.

Quick Facts

  • Boaters who purchase a single-lock-and-return pass or a one-day pass until June 30, will be able to redeem 2 for 1 coupons available at all lockstations, and from numerous cottage associations and marinas.
  • New oTENTik accommodations are now available at Beveridges lockstation on the Rideau Canal and at Lock 24 Douro on the Trent-Severn Waterway. A cross between a rustic cabin and a tent, the Parks Canada oTENTik is a relaxing, easier way to experience camping and provide an ideal base camp for exploring historic canals in Ontario. To reserve one of Parks Canada oTENTik tents, campers can go through Parks Canada online reservation service at www.reservation.parkscanada.gc.ca (or by phone at 1­877­737­3783).
  • Visitors are invited to paddle a Voyageur Canoe. Available at Ottawa Locks, by Parks Canada, and at the Peterborough Lift Lock, in partnership with the Canadian Canoe Museum, visitors can enjoy the canal from a beautiful multi-passenger Voyageur canoe.
  • Hidden in scenic places throughout the Rideau Canal and Trent-Severn Waterway, parks Canada's Red Chairs let visitors connect with nature and experience the most unique and treasured places within Canada. Join the many sharing their experiences through social media at #sharethechair.

Quotes

"Our Government's investments will directly contribute to the local economy and ensure Canada's historic canals continue to play a vital economic role in the region. We invite Canadians and international visitors alike to join us on Canada Day, and all summer long, for a historic, world-class experience along the Trent-Severn Waterway and Rideau Canal."

The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

"Free lockage on Canada Day - now that is a birthday gift from Parks Canada that will help you join us in Westport for our Canada Day Celebrations. Parade at 3:00 p.m. and one of the best fireworks events in Eastern Ontario at dusk."

Mayor Robin Jones, Westport

"Quinte West looks forward to welcoming visitors to the historic waterway. We are pleased to see the increased investment by Parks Canada into the system, which complements our own efforts in promoting tourism on the water. At the Gateway to the Trent-Severn, the brand new Trent Port Marina will be an ambassador for not only the City of Quinte West, but for the Trent-Severn Waterway and Parks Canada during Canada Day and throughout the boating season."

Mayor Jim Harrison, City of Quinte West


SOURCE Parks Canada (Georgian Bay and Ontario East Field Unit)

For further information:

Jonathan Lefebvre, Office of the Minister of the Environment, 819-997-1441; Media Relations, Parks Canada 1-855-862-1812, pc.media@pc.gc.cawww.twitter.com/parkscanada; Meaghan Bradley, Communications & Media Relations Officer, Ontario Waterways Unit, Parks Canada, 613-283-7199 ext. 266, Meaghan.Bradley@pc.gc.ca


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