Moncton cathedral may house Acadian groups
Idea could save historic building that needs $7M in repairs from wrecking ball
An historic cathedral in Moncton could be converted into a home for Acadian groups in the area.
A citizens group has proposed the idea as a way to save the Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption Cathedral, which needs more than $7 million in repairs.
The group has the blessing of the new archbishop and a feasibility study will begin this spring, with the results expected by September, said spokesman Alexis Couture.
Under the plan, the estimated dozen Acadian associations in the greater Moncton area, ranging from businesses to youth groups, could move into the church's basement, said Couture.
"Right now, they're spending between $200,000 and $250,000 a year in the greater Moncton area for buildings costs, you know rent," he said.
Instead, that money could be redirected toward fixing and maintaining the cathedral, saving it from the wrecking ball or being turned into condos, said Couture.
"This is an Acadian monument, which was built by the Acadian community, for the Acadian community and for them, this project is about regiving to the community," he said.
The cathedral, completed in the late 1930s, is considered a cultural landmark and a symbol of the resilience of the community.
The study will also look at how the rest of the church could be repurposed, Couture said.
When the cathedral was opened it served roughly 1,500 families, now only 300 use it as their church regularly.