SAINT JOHN (GNB) – The provincial and federal governments are contributing a combined $875,000 to help upgrade Fort La Tour and enhance the visitor experience at the national historic site.

“Your government understands how important creating jobs, growing the economy and securing health care and education are to New Brunswickers and their families,” said Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Bill Fraser, who is also the minister responsible for the Regional Development Corporation. “With the improvements and upgrades to Fort La Tour, the site will be a must-see cultural and historic tourist destination for everyone of all ages.”

The project includes the construction of replica buildings, walking paths, an outdoor amphitheatre and washroom facilities. The improvements are meant to make the site a world-class tourism destination in the heart of Saint John, attracting cruise ship travellers and other tourists and helping to spur economic growth in the downtown.

“Fort La Tour is part of the fabric of Saint John’s history,” said Saint John-Rothesay MP Wayne Long. “This investment will allow us to offer an enhanced experience and attract a growing number of tourists to our downtown core. Our government’s support for Fort La Tour reflects our commitment to capitalizing on opportunities to fuel regional economic growth and help key local attractions share our history.”

Long attended for federal Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains, who is also the minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA).

The provincial government is contributing $400,000 to the project while ACOA is investing $475,000 through its Innovative Communities Fund.

“It is with great pleasure that, after so many years of hard work by so many, this project is finally becoming reality,” said Beth Hatt, chair of the Fort La Tour Development Authority. “Fort La Tour has deep cultural and historic roots for the First Nations, francophone communities and loyalist settlers to Saint John, and we all share a special connection. This will be an important investment into a modern tourism and educational interpretation centre.”