Rideau Hall Begins Preparations for Canada's 150th Celebrations

OTTAWA, Aug. 2, 2016 /CNW/ - Earlier today, His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Dr. Mark Kristmanson, Chief Executive Officer of the National Capital Commission (NCC), launched the rehabilitation of Rideau Hall's forecourt area in preparation for Canada's 150th anniversary celebrations in 2017.

The redesigned front entrance arrival area, which will include a renewed Fountain of Hope, is a legacy project for the 150th anniversary of Confederation. This new ceremonial site will allow Rideau Hall to accommodate events involving more than 1 000 people in front of the residence.

"Next year promises to be very exciting. We are planning several great events for Canadians that will highlight important milestones," said the Governor General. "I am happy to say that the grounds and the residence will remain open while we get ready for 2017, and I look forward to inviting Canadians and visitors from abroad back to Rideau Hall and the Citadelle in Québec to celebrate 150 years of history."

The reconfiguration of the forecourt will allow the front entrance arrival area of Rideau Hall to return to its historic roots, with a central space able to accommodate a wide range of events. The work entails rehabilitating the Fountain of Hope, re-grading the arrival area to ensure it meets universal accessibility needs, resurfacing the existing paving material, improving drainage, installing new electrical conduits, wiring and a new lighting system. Construction is expected to be completed by the spring of 2017. For more information, visit www.ncc-ccn.gc.ca/places-to-visit/official-residences/forecourt-rehabilitation-project.

As planner of the Capital and steward of Rideau Hall and the other five official residences in Canada's Capital Region, the NCC ensures that the official residences retain their historic character while continuing to meet the evolving needs of Canadians. The project being launched today is the latest in a long tradition of improvements to preserve the iconic Rideau Hall.

Upcoming 150th Celebrations
Here are some of the other projects and events that are in the works for the sesquicentennial:

History Happens Here
Not only does 2017 mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation, but it also marks 150 years of governors general of Canada living and working at Rideau Hall. The residence and the grounds are full of history, and the Office of the Secretary to the Governor General (OSGG) and the NCC are working together to ensure that 150 years of history are preserved and shared. 

Recognition Happens Here
The Canadian Honours System recognizes Canadians who have demonstrated excellence, courage and exceptional dedication, and who have brought special credit to our country. 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the Order of Canada and the OSGG is building several partnerships to help celebrate this milestone through a host of special events and programs.

Celebration Happens Here
Rideau Hall and the Citadelle of Québec will be "must-visit" ceremonial sites for Canada's
150th anniversary. Both official residences will host public events, ceremonies and celebrations in order to give to all Canadians the opportunity to experience, live and breathe the true "Canadian spirit." In addition, the 125th anniversary of the Stanley Cup, the oldest team trophy in North America, will be celebrated at Rideau Hall, where it originated.

How else will the Governor General be celebrating 2017 with Canadians from coast to coast to coast? You'll have to stay tuned to find out!

Follow GGDavidJohnston and RideauHall on Facebook and Twitter.


SOURCE Governor General of Canada

For further information: Media information: Emily Keogh, Rideau Hall Press Office, 613-993-2569, 613-218-2299 (cell), emily.keogh@gg.ca; On the rehabilitation of the Rideau Hall forecourt: Jean Wolff, NCC Media Relations, 613-239-5678 ext. 5703, 613-797-0279 (cell), jean.wolff@ncc-ccn.ca

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