PEI

Green Gables Heritage Place redevelopment underway, says Parks Canada

Phase one of a major redevelopment of Green Gables Heritage Place in Cavendish, P.E.I., has begun with work taking place this fall and over the winter to support construction and on-site operations during the 2017 tourism season.

3 phases of construction will be completed in 2018

Visitors to Green Gables Heritage Site will see changes over the next three years as $9.5 million is spent on redeveloping the site. (Parks Canada)

Phase one of a major redevelopment of Green Gables Heritage Place in Cavendish, P.E.I., has begun with work taking place this fall and over the winter to support construction and on-site operations during the 2017 tourism season.

"That work will include things like an addition to the barn area that will house a temporary gift shop and once the project is completed that is where the food service will be located," said Parks Canada project co-ordinator, Chantelle MacDonald.

She told CBC Mainstreet host Angela Walker there will be an orientation centre set up in the barn where visitors will be able to learn more about Anne Shirley and Lucy Maud Montgomery.

The current gift shop and visitors centre will be torn down during phase one and a new visitor information centre will be built during phase 2.

MacDonald said a lot of planning has to be done to ensure people can still visit the site while the $9.5 million redevelopment is being done over three years.

Disruptions minimized

"Parks Canada staff have been working for awhile on an interim operations plan and we're really committed to offering services in the interim to make sure we're meeting the needs and expectations of our visitors."

MacDonald said there will be noise and dust at times but Parks Canada will try to minimize the disruptions.  

"The house itself will not change," said MacDonald adding neither would the walking trails.

Regular dates of operations will be maintained.

She added there will be a new entrance to the site that will go around the construction area.

Phase three will begin in 2018 and will focus on the parking area, the landscaping and on making the area more accessible.

MacDonald said the goal of the renovation is to attract more visitors to the site and encourage return visits.

"I feel this is a great opportunity for Parks Canada to renew and refresh the site and sort of re-engage the visitors that are there."

With files from Mainstreet