News – National parks and historic sites in Kingston and the area will benefit through restoration and preservation thanks to an investment from the federal government.
Just outside the entrance to Murney Tower on Sept. 15, MP Mark Gerretsen announced, on behalf of Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, nearly $10 million in funding for sites in and around Kingston. Those sites include Fort Henry National Historic Site, Kingston Fortifications National Historic Site, Bellevue House National Historic Site, and Thousand Islands National Park, all of which are federally owned and maintained by Parks Canada.
“Visitors come to this city because of the history and culture that make Kingston such a special place: We are Canada’s first capital, we are the city of Sir John A. Macdonald, [and] this community has a wealth of great museums, cultural sites, restaurants and businesses that all focus on ensuring a pleasurable stay in Kingston,” Gerretsen said, underlining the importance of the sites maintained by Parks Canada here in Kingston, and their role in local tourism.
“The government recognizes the value of this industry in Kingston. We are committed to preserving our national parks and national historic sites, expanding the system of protected areas and cultural treasures across the nation.”
Specifically, the investment will allow for the following projects: The acquisition of two pieces of property that will become part of Thousand Islands National Park, and revitalizing the campground and day-use areas of the Park; masonry repairs and terreplein waterproofing to ensure long-term integrity and protection from elemental exposure at Fort Henry National Historic Site; exterior repairs at Bellevue House National Historic Site, as well as a revitalization of the visitor experience there through new signage and interactive displays; masonry and exterior repairs of the three towers of the Kingston Fortification National Historic Site, Murney, Shoal and Cathcart Towers.
In total, the federal government is investing $1,363,000 for projects at Thousand Islands National Park, $4 million for projects at Fort Henry, $1,030,000 for projects at Bellevue House, and $3.4 million for projects at the Kingston Fortifications sites.
The investment totals just under $9.8 million in local National Parks and Historic Sites.
“Today’s investments will help to protect the natural and cultural heritage of Thousand Islands National Park, Fort Henry, the Kingston Fortifications, and Bellevue House – all national historic sites – and help to provide meaningful experiences for Canadians and visitors from around the world,” Gerrestsen said. “And as your Member of Parliament, I am proud to be able to play a role in protecting national treasures like Parks Canada’s locations in Kingston for the benefit of all Canadians for now and for future generations.”