Working Towards a New Management Plan for Forillon National Park
It's time to hear from you. Our online survey is now open for you to share your vision of the future of our park.
Forillon National Park is currently working hard to renew its management plan. A management plan is a strategic document that shapes a park's management measures and decisions, and which is used as a key tool for reaching the park's partners and the general public. It presents a long-term vision for the park and includes achievable short- and medium-term objectives and targets that enable us to measure if our expected results have been achieved. Management plans are a requirement of the Canada National Parks Act.
The Forillon National Park management plan will be finalized following the public consultations held with local residents and organizations, visitors, stakeholders, partners and Indigenous communities. These consultations will take place between February 12 and March 15, 2020. The plan will be presented in Parliament in the fall of 2020.
A draft plan has been created to be submitted for feedback from participants of the consultations. In particular, this draft plan puts forward a vision statement and four key management strategies:
The new management plan will include a long-term vision describing Forillon National Park’s aspirations for the coming 15 to 20 years. Here is one proposition:
In 2030, Forillon National Park will continue to be recognized for the authenticity of its majestic natural and cultural landscapes. With its towering cliffs, lush boreal forest, abundant marine and terrestrial wildlife, Forillon National Park will remain a symbol of harmony between the land and the sea. The rich history of the park's previous occupations, be it Indigenous, commercial or agricultural, will be remembered and valued through the ruins and through the constructions that have been preserved and which bear witness to the long-standing relationship human beings have maintained with the area.
Gaspesians and visitors alike will enjoy exploring the many different trails, magnificent points of view, and relaxing beaches where they can drift off to the sound of the waves. Forillon National Park will work hard with local communities to promote the park as a must-visit tourist destination and in order to offer the activities and services that visitors will appreciate.
Appreciation of Forillon National Park will be increased by:
- working collaboratively with the communities that have links with the park;
- sharing the human history of Forillon, the most important factors of which will become an integral part of the park's program;
- incorporating the traditional culture and knowledge of the Mi'gmaq Nation in the park's operations, the activities offered, and in the decision-making process;
- ensuring a constant balance between park use and the protection of its resources, between quantity and quality;
- addressing the challenges of nature and climate change by implementing mitigative action and accommodations in harmony with the park's ecosystems;
- improving the connectivity of the species that populate the park and its ecosystems with the Gaspé Peninsula as a whole;
- renewing infrastructures and the visitor experience to increase their satisfaction and their sense of attachment.
Key Strategies and Objectives
1. A vision to achieve together
This strategy relies on promoting the park through increased collaboration between Parks Canada and local communities and partners. The involvement and support of our partners, in particular of the Nation Mi'gmaq de Gespeg and the Regroupement de personnes expropriés de Forillon et leur descendance (persons expropriated from Forillon and their descendants), will result in a more cooperative management approach for the park. The expected outcomes of this strategy are:
- a stronger sense of attachment to the park;
- increased involvement from expropriated families and their descendants;
- better integration of the values and traditional knowledge of the Mi'gmaq Nation in the management of the park;
- increased education and outreach opportunities;
- a stronger presence in the media and promotional campaigns.
2. An evolving and healthy natural environment
Conserving the ecological integrity of the park's ecosystems is at the forefront of our management priorities. We must be particularly vigilant with regard to Forillon's hyperabundance of moose (link: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/qc/forillon/decouvrir-discover/faune-wildlife/moose-orignal), to forest balance — 95% of the park's area is covered in forest — and to the coastal marine environment, which is increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The expected outcomes of this strategy are:
- a healthier forest ecosystem;
- progress in the conservation of at-risk species;
- the restoration of disrupted ecosystems;
- the creation of up-to-date data regarding climate change that will help shape the management of the park;
- greater outreach and recognition of conservation efforts and scientific progress made at Forillon.
3. A unique cultural heritage to protect and promote
We want to expand our knowledge about the many cultural resources in the park, better preserve them, and share their cultural value with the public, with the help of our regional partners. This strategy relates to the buildings, objects, landscapes and archaeological resources. We intend to develop a specific management approach for the Grande-Grave sector. The expected outcomes of this strategy are:
- historical objects will be conserved in better conditions;
- the value of the park's cultural resources will be better communicated to the public;
- Mi'gmaq culture and heritage will be better protected and showcased;
- cultural landscapes will be identified and conserved as a manner of sharing the park's history with the public;
- archaeological resources will be better identified and protected.
4. A top destination due to its wealth of natural and cultural assets
By combining the natural and cultural components, this strategy addresses the creation of memorable occasions throughout the four seasons. It aims to broaden our range of services and activities, so that Forillon National Park can put itself forward as a must-visit recreational tourism destination. We plan to leverage the park's picturesque setting and its ecosystems, while sharing the history of its past occupants and their ways of life. The expected outcomes of this strategy are:
- more spread out and better managed park attendance;
- a revised interpretation program, which integrates natural, cultural and historical components with Indigenous knowledge.
- increased accommodation choices in the park;
- more diversified activities and related services;
- improved visitor facilities.
Two areas (Grande-Grave and Cap-Bon-Ami) have been identified as requiring a more supported management approach than the rest of the park. This kind of approach is justified due to the rather unique management challenges and the areas' particular significance for the general public and local communities.
Specific objectives and targets for these areas will be presented in the management plan.
The expected outcomes for the Grande-Grave area are: improved condition of the heritage buildings and structures, a redefined layout, and improved accessibility to the area. These objectives intend not only to recognize the legacy left by the area's past occupants, but also to create a more authentic experience for visitors to the park.
The objectives for Cap-Bon-Ami, one of the park's most iconic and popular areas, aim to rethink the development of the area's facilities, taking into account the issue of coastal erosion, the unique character of the area, and the visitor experience.
Since the 2010 Management Plan, we have made multiple significant accomplishments in the park. Here are just some of them:
- working collaboratively with our partners and the community: The Nation Micmac de Gespeg (e.g. interpretation activities), the Regroupement de personnes expropriées de Forillon et leur descendance [persons expropriated from Forillon and their descendants] (e.g. commemorative displays), the Advisory Board and other partners including Musique du Bout du Monde (sunrise concert), the Centre Culturel Le Griffon (winter activities), and the Traversées de la Gaspésie (ski, snowshoe and hike editions);
- the restoration of several infrastructures, including Route 132, campsite service buildings, the Blanchette site, Fort Peninsula, and the welcome and discovery centre;
- conservation projects, such as the restoration of the Penouille and Cap-des-Rosiers beaches;
- an increase in visitor attendance due to collaborative promotional efforts (including collaborations with Tourisme Gapésie and Destination Gaspé) and increased accommodation choices (oTENTiks, Ôasis, campsites).
Come meet our team at one of our open houses to find out more and share your point of view about the management of Forillon National Park. As you move around the differently themed stations, you’ll learn more about our work and our future vision.
- February 12* from 3 pm to 7 pm, in the Nation Micmac de Gespeg community hall
- February 13* from 3 pm to 7 pm, at the Centre culturel le Griffon
* In the event of bad weather, the open houses will take place on February 17 and 18, 2020.
Share your point of view by completing our online survey between February 12 and March 15, 2020.
Send your comments via email by March 15, 2020.Send my opinion via email
- Public Consultations (February 12 to March 15, 2020).
Local residents, organizations, visitors, stakeholders, partners, Canadians and Indigenous communities are invited to share their opinions about the draft management plan.
- Finalization of the management plan (spring 2020).
- Revision, approval and presentation of the management plan in Parliament (summer/fall 2020).