Railway Museum to receive $327,125 from Canada Cultural Spaces Fund towards roof
April 10, 2017 - St. Thomas, Ontario: Visitors to the Elgin County Railway Museum
will soon be able to experience more railway heritage. For more than twelve years,
the organization has been unable to realize the full potential of its magnificent
facility, because of the deteriorating condition of the century-‐old concrete paneled
roof that is original to the building. The Museum, located in the former 1913 Michigan
Central Locomotive shop currently has only 30% of its available floor space is accessible
to the public for safety reasons. This limits visitors' access to displays, and
to the impressive collection of rolling stock railway equipment. Full replacement
of the concrete roof with a modern metal system is needed. The organization has
broken the project into sections, mirroring the stepped roof-line of the building,
make the project and fundraising more manageable.
This fall, the Museum plans to replace the roof over the centre section of its heritage
building, which will increase the publicly accessible floor space by 35%, to a total
of 65% of the extensive 52,000 square foot facility. This will open up an additional
18,200 square feet of cultural space that the Museum can offer to the community
for programming, while increasing space available for exhibitions. This project
will improve conditions for the protection of the largest artifacts the Museum has
been entrusted to preserve and display, and support an improved environment for
volunteers to work on rail equipment maintenance, restoration, and exhibit construction.
"The public, and tourists the Museum attracts will benefit from an improved visitor
experience, as their distance from our impressive rolling stock collection of coaches,
cabooses and engines will be significantly reduced", says Executive Director, Dawn
Miskelly, "They will finally get the up-close experience so many of them have
been asking for."
The total budget for the project is anticipated to be $654,250. The Canada Cultural
Spaces Fund will contribute $327,125 in matching funds to the project, and the Museum's
fundraising efforts and contributions towards the project are $147,250 to date.
According to the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, "Cultural
spaces like the Elgin County Railway Museum bring people of all backgrounds together.
By supporting the renovation of cultural infrastructure, we are creating jobs, strengthening
communities, and putting arts and culture within reach of all Canadians." The organization
will actively continue fundraising the remaining $179,875 for the roof replacement
through to its completion. Donations can be made through the Railway Museum's Managed
Fund at the Elgin St. Thomas Community Foundation, online at www.ecrm5700.org, or
by calling or visiting the Railway Museum.
This project has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada.
About the Elgin County Railway Museum: Established in 1988, and incorporated in
1989, the Elgin County Railway Museum is located in the historic 1913 Michigan Central
Railroad Locomotive Shops at 225 Wellington Street, St. Thomas, Ontario. It is a
not-‐for-‐profit, charitable organization with an elected Board of Directors,
which welcomes more than 6,500 visitors annually. Hours: Saturdays 12-4pm, Victoria
Day through Labour Day Tuesday to Sunday 10am–4pm. Admission: $7 per adult, $3 per
child, under 3 years old are admitted free.