FedNor invests $500,000 to modernize and improve sports and recreation facility in Thunder Bay
Government of Canada support will upgrade existing facilities and help attract visitors to Northwestern Ontario
July 28, 2022 — Thunder Bay, ON
The Government of Canada recognizes that tourism is an important driver of northern economies, and that the tourism industry has been impacted by the pandemic. Investments in the tourism industry have not only helped keep businesses and organizations open, but are helping them remain competitive, strong, and growing.
Today, Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay—Rainy River, announced a FedNor investment of $500,000 in the City of Thunder Bay, to modernize and improve the Fort William Stadium and Legion Track. The announcement was made on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor.
The City of Thunder Bay will redevelop the facility's 400 metre track and International Federation of Association Football (FIFA)-sized field, with the installation of a new turf system and pad. Existing asphalt will be replaced with two layers of impermeable levelled rubber asphalt track surface. Additionally, the score board and structure will be replaced with a modern score board with audio and visual capabilities.
Fort William Stadium and Legion Track is the only facility of its kind in Northwestern Ontario. The revitalized facility will be capable of hosting potential future events such as provincial and national sports events, as well as concerts and festivals. The stadium will continue to be available for use by — charity groups, elementary and high school sports, minor league sports, and residents. This project is anticipated to create five construction jobs.
The investment announced today is provided through the Northern Ontario Development Program (NODP)'s Tourism Relief Fund (TRF), which supports tourism businesses and organizations to adapt their operations to meet public health requirements while investing in products and services to facilitate their future growth.
"The Fort William Stadium and Legion Track is a community cornerstone in the southern core of Thunder Bay, and the FedNor funds announced today will help ensure it remains central piece of the neighbourhood for decades to come. Supporting our local tourism infrastructure will help keep our economy growing, and we are proud that, through this collaboration with the City of Thunder Bay, we are helping create new growth and new opportunities for Thunder Bay and Northernwestern Ontario."
- Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay—Rainy River
"We are proud to be the regional centre for Northwestern Ontario, and FedNor's support is helping us meet the needs of people across our region. Thunder Bay is a place where adventure and play is all around, and top-level facilities like Fort William Stadium and Legion Track not only provide a rich resource for residents but also attract visitors and contribute to the vibrant tourism industry in Northwestern Ontario."
- Bill Mauro, mayor of Thunder Bay
The tourism sector is a key contributor to the Canadian economy. In 2019, tourism generated over $104 billion in revenue and directly employed 692,000 people, including those in underrepresented groups like women, students, racialized people, and Indigenous populations.
With a national budget of $500 million, of which $485 million was earmarked for regional priorities administered by Canada's Regional Development Agencies and $15 million for national priorities administered by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, the Tourism Relief Fund is part of the billion dollars in tourism support announced in Budget 2021.
Of the $485 million, a minimum of $50 million of the fund's budget has been earmarked for Indigenous tourism projects. Indigenous communities that rely heavily on tourism have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic.
Alison Murphy, Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor
Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario
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