Forillon National Park to Pursue Investment Projects
Gaspé (Québec), June 25, 2013 – Parks Canada will continue major work in the Penouille Peninsula and Cap-des-Rosiers harbour sectors in 2013.
Penouille, a renewed ecotourism experience
Penouille Boarding Bridge © Parks Canada
The Parks Canada team is currently working on a project aimed at making Penouille a major tourist attraction for the residents of greater Gaspé (city), visitors, and cruise passengers alike. A partnership between Parks Canada and Escale Gaspésie has already led to the construction of a boarding bridge to accommodate cruise passengers at the tip of the point, a bicycle rental building, and new bus and bicycle shelters. This year, plans call for constructing a wooden bridge running the length of the neck, alongside the marsh. Designed for pedestrians, bikes and public transit, this bridge will enable local citizens and visitors to take full advantage of this outstanding natural site. At the same time, it will help to preserve Penouille Peninsula for future generations.
Electric Shuttle that will be operated by Escale Gaspésie Photo: Escale Gaspésie
For several years now, the Penouille Peninsula has been affected by shore erosion, rising sea levels and climate change. “With the Penouille integrated development project, Parks Canada seeks to offer the public a renewed, entertaining and enriching ecotourism experience, while also helping to restore the natural dynamic of the shoreline,” explained Forillon National Park superintendent Stéphane Marchand. In particular, this vast undertaking will allow the facilities currently found on the spit to be relocated and ensure that access to them is adapted to the fragile environment. New initiatives are also planned to showcase certain little-known aspects of Penouille’s natural and cultural heritage. Lastly, new ecological modes of transport (i.e., an electric shuttle and rental quad bikes) will be available to visitors starting in 2014. All in all, this project is designed to offer visitors to Penouille a unique and inspiring visitor experience that dovetails with Forillon National Park’s dual mission of preservation and presentation.
Cap-des-Rosiers harbour: development of the north sector
The project to upgrade the Cap-des-Rosiers wharf involves the installation of riprap protection to reinforce the outer side of the piers and the inner side of the wharf basin. It also involves rebuilding the Whalen River bridge abutments. The work is slated to begin in fall 2013 and end in spring 2014.
The revitalization of the fishing harbour in the Cap-des-Rosiers sector will enhance the visitor experience by fostering interaction between fishers and visitors and creating a pleasant environment for walking.
The first Quebec park to be included in Canada’s national park system, Forillon National Park was created in 1970 and covers an area of almost 244 km2. A major tourist attraction and a major driver of the Gaspé Peninsula economy, the park employs 135 people during the peak season and has invested $14 million in various projects since 2008, particularly with a view to improving the visitor experience.