Up­grades for High­land Village

Fed­eral fund­ing to help with ren­o­va­tions in the spring

Cape Breton Post - - Front Page - BY CHRIS­TIAN ROACH

The High­land Village Mu­seum in Iona will re­ceive a $1.2 mil­lion in­vest­ment over three years from the fed­eral gov­ern­ment to as­sist with ren­o­va­tions be­gin­ning in the spring of 2018.

Syd­ney–Vic­to­ria MP Mark Eyk­ing made the an­nounce­ment on Wednesday at the mu­seum on be­half of the Min­is­ter of In­no­va­tion Navdeep Bains.

The fed­eral fund­ing is be­ing al­lo­cated through At­lantic Canada Op­por­tu­ni­ties Agency’s (ACOA) In­no­va­tive Com­mu­ni­ties Fund, which helps At­lantic com­mu­ni­ties to de­velop com­pet­i­tive in­dus­try sec­tors, strengthen in­fra­struc­ture and cre­ate long-term em­ploy­ment and eco­nomic growth.

The pro­ject will in­clude the con­struc­tion of a new welcome cen­tre, the ren­o­va­tion of the ex­ist­ing vis­i­tor/ad­min­is­tra­tion build­ing to cre­ate a cul­tural re­source cen­tre, as well as the ad­di­tion of new in­ter­pre­tive and sup­port struc­tures through­out the prop­erty.

High­land Village direc­tor Rodney Chais­son said the $1.2 mil­lion in­vest­ment is part of a big­ger three-year plan that will see a wide range of im­prove­ments to the mu­seum.

“This is part of a $3.6 mil­lion pro­ject – a site devel­op­ment pro­ject we’re look­ing into over the next three years. What it’s going to do is en­able us to en­hance our vis­i­tor ex­pe­ri­ence and also have the ca­pac­ity to do more,” he said.

“We’ll be able to bet­ter serve our visitors, in­crease ca­pac­ity for that kind of stuff and col­lec­tions man­age­ment – it will cover a va­ri­ety of as­pects of the op­er­a­tion.”

Chais­son went on to say the Nova Sco­tia High­land Village So­ci­ety, which op­er­ates the mu­seum will be fundrais­ing a third of fund­ing (roughly $1 mil­lion), the County of Vic­to­ria will pro­vide $100,000 and the so­ci­ety is cur­rently in talks with the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment to pro­vide fund­ing as well.

Bruce Mor­ri­son, war­den of the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of the County of Vic­to­ria, said the fund­ing pro­vided by the county is a good in­vest­ment be­cause of the pop­u­lar­ity of the High­land Village Mu­seum.

“We would con­sider it a sig­nif­i­cant amount of money to give to an or­ga­ni­za­tion but we cer­tainly see the value in this par­tic­u­lar case,” said Mor­ri­son, who added that the $1.2 mil­lion in fund­ing by the fed­eral gov­ern­ment is good for tourism in all of Cape Bre­ton.

“In Cape Bre­ton, we’ve seen an in­crease in tourism in the last two years and sites such as the High­land Village is the type of ex­pe­ri­ence a lot of tourists are look­ing for. I think with the im­prove­ments be­ing made to the High­land Village, it’s just going to lead to more tourists vis­it­ing.”

The in­vest­ment aims to build on com­mit­ments made by the Gov­ern­ment of Canada and the four At­lantic prov­inces to drive eco­nomic growth in the re­gion through the At­lantic Growth Strat­egy.

Eyk­ing said the in­vest­ment made on Wednesday will strengthen Cape Bre­ton’s cul­ture and be an eco­nomic boost to the is­land.

“Cape Bre­ton Is­land is world renowned for its cul­ture, his­tory and spec­tac­u­lar scenery. Our gov­ern­ment is pleased to sup­port the Nova Sco­tia High­land Village So­ci­ety in their ef­forts to build on these strengths and pro­vide visitors to our re­gion with au­then­tic cul­tural ex­pe­ri­ences,” said Eyk­ing.

Chais­son said the first year of the pro­ject will fo­cus on com­plet­ing the new welcome cen­tre and a car­riage house start­ing in the spring of 2018. The pro­ject is ex­pected to be fin­ished in the spring of 2021.


The High­land Village Mu­seum in Iona is pic­tured. The Gov­ern­ment of Canada an­nounced Wednesday that it would in­vest $1.2 mil­lion in the mu­seum over a three-year pe­riod for ren­o­va­tions

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