Maritime museum could revitalize downtown tourism

For many years, the idea of a maritime museum for Nanaimo has been mooted but never followed through.

To the Editor,

Re: Maritime museum seeking new Island home, July 2.

For many years, the idea of a maritime museum for Nanaimo has been mooted but never followed through. Now that the Maritime Museum of B.C. in Victoria is losing its historic premises and may be casting its eyes on a coastal Island city for its new home, perhaps it is time to renew our interest. Historically, Nanaimo is one of B.C.’s oldest ports and a busy working one.

It might be appropriate to offer the upper floor of the little-used conference centre. One could envision a whole tourist-orientated complex in the area: maritime history, the Nanaimo Museum, the military museum, Bastion and the historic downtown.

Need more space for lectures and conferences? The Port Theatre is not overused, and the cruise ship terminal has certainly not reached its potential. Waterfront plaques tell some of our shipping history, and small shipbuilders like the Vollmers played an important role in our development. Harbour tours and ferries are on hand for visitors.

Do not let us miss another chance to give the city a boost for prosperity. There may not be much money in the pot, but with developers showing interest in Nanaimo and the government looking for election support, maybe they can all become partners in the enterprise.

Pamela MarNanaimo

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