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Park to be developed at Cape St. Mary lighthouse

Renovations to exterior of lighthouse and site enhancements planned

Published on July 25, 2017

A new park is being built on the site of the Cape Saint Mary lighthouse.

©C&S Photography

CLARE - Work will begin this summer on a new park on the site of the Cape Saint Mary lighthouse.  

The Municipality of Clare is leading the project to transform the site into a municipal park, to be officially named Le Parc du Phare au Cap Sainte-Marie (Cape Saint Mary Lighthouse Park).

This project will revitalize and promote a hidden gem to be appreciated for generations of visitors and residents.

Ronnie LeBlanc, warden of the Municipality of Clare

 On Jan. 10, 2017, the Municipality of Clare legally took possession of the Cape Saint Mary lighthouse and 2.1-acre property, following a divestiture process with the federal department of Fisheries & Oceans.

The lighthouse and site is located at the end of the fishing village of Cape Saint Mary, on a bluff offering visitors panoramic views of the sea and cliffs.

A tendering process for the construction phase of the project closed July 14. Work will begin this summer on exterior renovations to the lighthouse, as well as site improvements to the property and the addition of visitor amenities.

Exterior renovations include repainting the tower, replacing the roof and replacing the vinyl siding with cedar shingles. Site enhancements include the creation of a parking lot, fence replacement with a nautical-style post and rope fencing and a boulder barrier, as well as landscaping. A monument commemorating those lost at sea from Clare will be completed and installed onsite.

Also planned are welcome signage, interpretive panels, benches, picnic tables and a viewing scope. Marketing elements include photography, a website, Facebook page and signage. A webcam will also be installed as part of the Nova Scotia Webcams network.  The project also includes a site selection and design phase for a new modern change-room facility at nearly Mavillette Beach Provincial Park.

DFO will continue to require access to the light tower to maintain its fog alarm for navigation purposes. There are no short-term plans to provide access to the interior of the lightstation for visitors. A similar model for the Cape Saint Mary project is the Point Prim Lighthouse near the Town of Digby, where the focus is enhancing the site and providing visitor amenities.

Warden welcomes project

“This project will revitalize and promote a hidden gem to be appreciated for generations of visitors and residents,” said Ronnie LeBlanc, warden of the Municipality of Clare. “The new park will become a major draw for visitors, adding to the critical mass of tourism assets in the Mavillette Beach-Cape St. Mary area.”