June 25, 2019 – St. Peter’s, NS – Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
Authentic Atlantic Canadian experiences attract visitors to our shores, boost the economy and instill community pride. St. Peter’s Economic Development Organization and Potlotek First Nation are working alongside Parks Canada to create a new tourism hub at St. Peters Canal National Historic Site to improve cultural and experiential opportunities.
Thanks to support from the Government of Canada, the hub, officially named Canal Landing, will open on Saturday, June 29, at 2 p.m. It will include new facilities and equipment to help develop employment and entrepreneurial opportunities for Potlotek youth, craft producers, artisans and members of surrounding communities. Canal Landing will also offer a variety of new services including recreational rentals, cultural excursions and workshops.
Rodger Cuzner, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour and Member of Parliament for Cape Breton – Canso, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), announced support for the project today.
The Government of Canada is committed to supporting tourism-based initiatives and attracting more international visitors to Canada. It is investing in tourism infrastructure to create middle class jobs, grow Canada’s economy, and bring new opportunities and pride to communities looking for a chance to show the world what they have to offer.
“Developing tourism experiences like this drives growth and creates jobs for the middle class in communities across the country. This adds to the many attractions that Cape Breton already has to offer as a tourism destination to attract more tourists. There is a global tourism boom underway and we need to make sure all communities can reap the benefits.”
– The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie
“Promoting Cape Breton as a tourism destination of choice means providing visitors with unforgettable experiences, and I’m confident that visitors to the St. Peters Canal National Historic Site will enjoy their stay more than ever before as a result of these positive changes.”
– Rodger Cuzner, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour and Member of Parliament for Cape Breton – Canso on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for ACOA
“The Canal Landing tourism hub is the first step in forming a strong bond between St. Peter’s, Potlotek, Parks Canada and our Federal Government to develop our tourism industry at St. Peters Canal Historic Site. Working together, we can grow this project into a major tourist attraction.”
– Sherry MacLeod, Director, St. Peter’s Economic Development Organization
“At Potlotek First Nation, we are excited to be working with our partners towards creating a path of reconciliation at this significant national and historic site of the St. Peters Canal. By showcasing and sharing our culture and traditions, we are hopeful that this project will enlighten and educate those that visit us at the Canal Landing.”
– Tahirih Paul, Economic Development Officer, Potlotek First Nation
St. Peters Canal National Historic Site welcomes approximately 12,000 people per year. Thousands of vehicles cross the bridge each month and it swings open for more than a thousand boats each year.
Potlotek First Nation is located five minutes away from St. Peters Canal and is the spiritual capital of Mi’kmaq Nation.
In 2019, St. Peters Canal National Historic Site is marking its 150th anniversary and Parks Canada is celebrating all season long with the communities of St. Peter’s and Potlotek. Events this year will help create memorable experiences for visitors and community members as we mark this special year.
The Government of Canada invested a $79,551 non-repayable contribution in this project through ACOA’s Business Development Program (BDP).
The BDP primarily assists Atlantic Canadian entrepreneurs who want to start a business, increase productivity or improve operations. Investments under the BDP address any gap that may arise if an application does not fit within ACOA’s Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI) program.
The BDP continues to build on the objectives of the Innovation and Skills Plan, a multi-year strategy to create well-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it.