Minister Boissonnault announces federal investments to strengthen Edmonton’s tourism economy
PrairiesCan funding of more than $3.7 million for The City of Edmonton will improve local attractions and support activities for residents and visitors
March 14, 2023 – Edmonton, Alberta – PrairiesCan
Edmonton offers residents and visitors alike access to unique urban experiences and outdoor adventures that spur economic benefits for local businesses by attracting regional, national and international visitors.
The city is home to outstanding festivals, culinary experiences, parks and attractions. Facilities across the city complement these activities by providing enjoyable recreational experiences while providing visitors with opportunities to discover and learn about the region’s history, nature, and diverse cultures.
The Government of Canada is continuing to support unique attractions and activities that help make cities a great place to live, play and visit. Today, the Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, on behalf of the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan, announced $3,721,184 in federal funding to support four projects that will enhance several attractions at the heart of Edmonton’s tourism sector.
- Fort Edmonton Park is receiving $1,221,184 to develop and deliver immersive year-round experiences—including winter programming, multi-media light displays, and exhibits focused on sharing Indigenous stories and cultures.
- The Edmonton Valley Zoo is receiving $1 million to implement tourism and visitor enhancements—including new amenities, technology aids, and visitor experiences.
- The Muttart Conservatory is receiving $1 million to add new exhibits, install an interactive display, and upgrade technology and kitchen facilities.
- The City of Edmonton is receiving $500,000 to host programming and install interactive art and vibrant decorative lighting in the Churchill Square, City Hall and Arts District areas to draw visitors to downtown Edmonton.
Federal funding for these projects is provided through the Tourism Relief Fund, administered in Alberta by PrairiesCan. These investments are expected to help support more than 55 jobs in the city.
“Our government is further positioning attractions and events in communities across the Prairies as destinations that draw more visitors, generate economic activity and create good jobs workers can count on. Edmonton is a key part of Alberta’s tourism sector, and today’s investments will enable local attractions to provide accessible, unique and memorable experiences to people of all ages and abilities.”
–The Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan
“Edmonton has what the world wants, from incredible Indigenous experiences to dynamic urban and rural events all year long. Today’s investments will further support the revival and growth of Edmonton’s visitor economy with new experiences for travelers from across Canada and around the world to explore and discover, and keep as memories for years to come.”
–The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance
“As we work towards achieving the Edmonton region’s post-pandemic economic development goals, it is essential that we continue to champion our local tourism industry, which promotes vibrancy and sparks joy here in our city. I am pleased that PrairiesCan has made such significant investments into Edmonton’s tourism sector, and I know that with continued support for the region’s visitor economy, we can help Edmontonians and tourists experience our beautiful city in more meaningful and accessible ways.”
–Amarjeet Sohi, Mayor, City of Edmonton
“The sustainability of our cultural tourism institutions is at stake, and with the Minister's announcement today, we have a foothold for the next steps of sustainability. For tourism to truly have a compounding economic impact, it needs relevant products in-market, and this support will help us get innovative offerings over the line.”
–Darren Dalgleish, President & CEO, Fort Edmonton Management Company
“The Valley Zoo Development Society is thrilled to be able to work with the Edmonton Valley Zoo to continue to offer a world class education and tourism experience. This grant makes it possible to bring exciting new educational content both on the grounds and virtually, to offer improved access via technology and visitor amenities, while improving our onsite experience and after hours events.”
–Tammy Wiebe, Executive Director, Valley Zoo Development Society
The Tourism Relief Fund (TRF) helps organizations in the tourism sector adapt operations to meet public health requirements, offer innovative products and services to visitors, and prepare to welcome travelers to Canada. PrairiesCan administers the Fund in the Prairie Provinces.
With a budget of $500 million over two years, including $50 million specifically dedicated to Indigenous tourism initiatives and $15 million for national initiatives, this fund will position Canada to be a destination of choice for domestic and international travel.
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