ST. PETER'S, NS, March 21, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice, today announced $85 million in new investments in several Parks Canada sites across Cape Breton Island.
These projects are the result of an unprecedented investment by the Government of Canada to support infrastructure work in our national historic sites, national parks and national marine conservation areas. This investment represents the largest federal infrastructure plan in the 104-year history of Parks Canada, ensuring these cherished places are protected and secured for the future while also creating and protecting jobs and opportunities.
The Government of Canada will be investing more than $85 million to support improvements for Parks Canada infrastructure on Cape Breton Island, including the following projects:
- St. Peters Canal bridge replacement ($10.4M);
- Bridge, culverts and road rehabilitation on the Cabot Trail ($52.3M);
- Visitor facilities rehabilitation including trails and campground in Cape Breton Highlands National Park ($1.9M); and
- Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site Route 22 rehabilitation ($10M).
- On November 24, the Prime Minister announced a new $5.8 billion federal infrastructure program that will continue to build and renew infrastructure across the country. Today's announcement is part of this infrastructure program.
- Parks Canada is present in hundreds of communities across Canada and contributes approximately $3 billion to the Canadian economy every year.
- Parks Canada's overall contribution to the Canadian economy is responsible for more than 40,000 jobs from coast to coast to coast.
- Parks Canada investments support the Government's National Conservation Plan while also creating jobs, promoting visitor experience and supporting communities across Canada.
- As Canada nears its 150th birthday in 2017, the Government of Canada invites Canadians to learn more about the major events that have shaped their country's history. Canada's national historic sites enable Canadians to experience their rich history and heritage in a special way and play a big part in the celebration of Canada 150.
"Our Government is committed to creating jobs, growth and long term prosperity. Today's announcement will strengthen and grow our local and regional partnerships as we increase the opportunity to further enhance tourism experiences on Cape Breton Island. This historic investment in our parks and heritage destinations creates and protects jobs while also offering boundless opportunities for adventure, recreation, learning, environmental stewardship, inspiration and self-renewal."
The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Member of Parliament for Central Nova
Backgrounder: Total Investments in Parks Canada Places on Cape Breton Island: $85 million
National Conservation Plan
Parks Canada: www.parkscanada.gc.ca
Total Investments in Parks Canada Places on Cape Breton Island: $85 million
Selected projects for highlighting:
St. Peter's Canal National Historic Site - $10.4 million
St. Peters Canal Bridge Replacement
This project is a full bridge replacement to ensure vital throughway connection on a main provincial highway (Highway #4) as well as boat traffic. Construction is expected to take place in 2016.
Site description: St. Peter's was the site of Fort Saint-Pierre, a 17th century fortified trading post acquired by Nicolas Denys in 1650 to trade with the Mi'kmaq. Approximately 12,000 people visit this site per year. Thousands of vehicles cross the bridge each month and it swings open for 1000 boats each year. Visitors can enjoy a picnic while watching the vessels lock through the 800-metre canal, linking the Atlantic Ocean with the Bras d'Or Lakes. www.pc.gc.ca/stpeterscanal
Cape Breton Highlands National Park - $54.2 million
Bridge, Culverts and Road Rehabilitation on the Cabot Trail ($52.3 million) – Numerous bridges, culverts and sections of road along the Cabot Trail will undergo repairs and replacements within Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Paving work will take place on sections of North Mountain and French to MacKenzie Mountains. Bridge replacements are scheduled for Black Brook Bridge, Neil's Brook Bridge and North Aspy River Bridge, among others. Culverts will be replaced at Big Johnny's Turn and French Mountain.
Visitor facilities rehabilitation including trails and campground ($1.9 million) – Improvements to campground facilities in Cape Breton Highlands National Park will include electrical, septic, water and washroom upgrades. Other enhancements to visitor facilities include trail work, viewscapes and restoration of the natural dimensions and habitats of the Clyburn Brook.
Site description: Cape Breton Highlands National Park is known for its spectacular highlands and ocean scenery, steep cliffs and deep river canyons carved into a forested plateau bordering the Atlantic Ocean. One third of the Cabot Trail, a world-famous scenic highway, runs through the national park. Approximately 175,000 people visit this site per year. Boasting 26 hiking trails, magnificent beaches, 24 stunning viewpoints along the Cabot Trail, numerous waterfalls, 8 campgrounds, special events and weekly activities during July and August, Cape Breton Highlands National Park is an ideal getaway for families, couples or solo adventurers. www.pc.gc.ca/capebreton
Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site - $10 million
Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site - Route 22 Rehabilitation – This project will address a full road construction on a section of Route 22 within the Fortress of Louisbourg.
Site description: The Fortress of Louisbourg is the largest reconstruction project in North America. The original settlement was founded in 1713 by the French and developed over several decades into a thriving center for fishing and trade. The site lay untouched until well into modern times, when archaeologists began to reconstruct the Fortress as it was in the 18th century. An average of 82,000 people visit this site every year. Visitors can transport themselves back in time to the 18th century. Fire a cannon, set up camp in the King's Bastion and taste Fortress Rum, which is stored and aged at the Fortress. In the evening take in one of our many concerts or evening programs under the star-filled sky during the summer months. www.pc.gc.ca/louisbourg
SOURCE Parks Canada
For further information: Coady Slaunwhite, Public Relations and Communications Officer, Parks Canada, 902-217-0861; Media Relations, Parks Canada, 1-855-862-1812; www.twitter.com/parkscanada