Montague gets $320,000 in funding for cultural development

Steve Sharratt
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Montague officials Andy Daggett, Mayor Richard Collins and Andrew Rowe at the site of a building that will be renovated this spring into an art gallery and studio as part of the south-side development.

MONTAGUE - The icing on the cake for eastern P.E.I.‘s largest town will soon be underway following a $320,000 government funding grant aimed at making the town a cultural destination.

The long awaited approval for the south side development now allows the town to upgrade the opposite side of the river from the waterfront park, marina and train station.

“This is a major step in our goal to make our town a destination site to visit and enjoy,’’ said Mayor Richard Collins. “It will bring focus to our lovely waterfront and offer plenty of things to do and see.”

Fisheries and Oceans Minister Gail Shea and P.E.I. Rural Development Minister Ron MacKinley announced a combined investment of $320,000 towards the necessary enhancements on Friday. The construction is expected to begin in early April.

“Tourism plays a key role in helping keep rural communities vibrant and strong,” said Shea about the funding. “Montague will become a cultural destination.”

The town intends to renovate a building below the heritage museum to accommodate the successful “Artisans on Main” project by opening a gallery and studio on the riverfront. The project will also include a significant art trail through the town and improved accessibility with a promenade along the trail in the downtown area of Montague.

“This funding reflects our support to enhance rural communities by supporting local business and boosting the economy,” said MacKinley.

The year-round studio and gallery will attract up to 40 local artisans to work and sell their art collections from a central location while the art trail will improve the visual appeal of the downtown area.

“It’s very exciting,’’ said Collins. “This has been in the works for years and it’s going to make big changes.”

The north side of the waterfront includes the marina park, where entertainment is held throughout the summer, a full and bustling pleasure boat marina, the Confederation Trail, and a brand new 30 room hotel overlooking the river.

Organizations: Confederation Trail

Geographic location: Montague, Eastern P.E.I.

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Recent comments

  • Moving forward
    March 23, 2014 - 15:14

    It is great to see that Montague is moving forward with a clear vision for the future. Supporting the arts and making this area a cultural hub will be great for tourism. Small towns like Baddeck and Peggy's Cove, NS have carved out a niche for this and are vibrant and busy communities. Pair these arts and culture projects with the beautiful waterfront and Montague is a viable tourist destination. The more tourists the more economic stimulation.

    • Marie
      March 23, 2014 - 17:48

      There are many fabulous galleries in Ch'town - Shephard gallery especially comes to mind - (and even this very well known gallery closes in winter)...besides other galleries and the Confed Ctr & gift shop -Peakes Quay etc why would people in Charlottetown OR tourists drive to Montague when Ch'town has been the hub of culture on the island. Last year the Montague council were trying to annex some people in to Montague radius to raise $15,000 extra in taxes. Now suddenly there are $$ to spend in overdrive. This council is totally off the radar. Who is going to be going to Montague in winter to buy art at a full time gallery? Time to vote them out.

  • Marie
    March 23, 2014 - 09:36

    $320,000. $320,000.

  • very interesting
    March 22, 2014 - 16:25

    Will the building be moved to another location as it appears that the present site will not meet lot size requirements or parking spaces? This building was dropped there with a large Crane a few years ago.

  • Kathleen Sandford
    March 22, 2014 - 16:00

    so wonderful and exciting ... so well deserved ... "Montague" the beautiful is a movin and a shakin a rockin and a rollin on the river .... congratulations to all that made this happen ...

  • Isabel McLean
    March 22, 2014 - 13:43

    That is wonderful news for the Town of Montague

  • Cripes
    March 22, 2014 - 12:36

    Cripes - Just where in the HELL is all this money coming from to be wasted like this . Hey I forgot we only bankrupted our children & grandchildren . Guess its time to do the same to our great grandchildren . Shame -Shame on all of you greedy XXXXXXX's . Your not fit to be parents & grand parents . Mrs Shea , you really let me down here , Robert & Wes I understand but thought you had a least some sense . Your not worth a vote either any more .

  • Jimmy Buffet
    March 22, 2014 - 11:12

    First they need some artisans not stuff like crap carved out of sandstone or junky jewelry. At least get some sea glass from Souris or the north side...nice work.

    • intobed
      March 22, 2014 - 14:25

      Sandstone carvings or chunky jewelry? Charlottetown would be glad to get that. Instead, check outside of the Confed Centre on the Grafton Street side. See those eight round bales of rotting hay? That is considered art around here. Ugly foolishness.

  • caringgal
    March 22, 2014 - 08:24

    The Montague Mayor and Council has just informed the Waterfront Board that they (the Council) will be taking over the elected Board and appointing their own selected Board.Guess they want to control everything

    • Joe
      March 22, 2014 - 12:01

      The current board has become corrupted and dysfunctional. The waterfront belongs to the town, not the Liberal Party of PEI.

    • caringgal
      March 23, 2014 - 11:55

      Joe,the current board is non-political and is elected by the residents who pay $5.oo a year for voting previleges.Anyone can join. After the town takes over,the mayor will choose who he wants on the board.Do you consider this fair? The Liberal party is not involved .

  • SomeOne
    March 22, 2014 - 08:16

    How about instead of investing in the arts, we invest in something fun for a broader range of People? Marketing PEI as a place to sit back and do nothing is not attractive to most. We need some activities, maybe a huge yearly festival. The more people you bring to the area, the more people stay in the area. The more people stay, the more they spend. The more they spend, the more businesses and jobs in the area. The more businesses and jobs in the area, the more tax revenue for the area. It seems like the artists are getting tons of government money, time for another group to see some funding. There is already no shortage of places showcasing art in this town.

    • frank
      March 22, 2014 - 10:51

      "SomeOne" - exactly what do you propose the funds be invested? How about getting creative and positive and contributing to the situation rather than criticizing it ? That "could" help !

    • BreakingNews
      March 23, 2014 - 15:30

      Many people like the arts. It requires a little bit of cultured appreciation, however.