FORTUNE, NL – The Fortune Port Corporation is continuing efforts to secure additional funds for much-needed wharf upgrades.
The Canada Border Services Agency uses the port’s wharf infrastructure for its ferry service to and from the nearby French islands of St-Pierre-et-Miquelon.
Earl Rose, president of the Fortune Port Corporation, told the Southern Gazette it has $2 million of the estimated $3.1 million needed to upgrade the wharf’s infrastructures to accommodate the new year-round ferry service that will run between Fortune and St-Pierre-et-Miquelon.
In November, two new ferries were delivered to St-Pierre-et-Miquelon, each with the capacity to hold approximately 200 passengers, 15 cars and three tractor trailers. Travellers making the crossing currently do so aboard the vessel Le Cabestan, which is limited to foot traffic and not equipped to transport vehicles.
Wharf upgrades will include a ramp to allow vehicles to board the ferries.
Rose said the corporation has meetings scheduled with the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) and Chris Mitchelmore, minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, in an effort to come up with the remaining funds to upgrade the facility.
Rose said he hopes to know more about where the corporation stands financially following the meetings.
Rose said he hasn’t given any thought to what it could mean should the port corporation not be able to secure the additional money needed to upgrade the infrastructure.
“I hope that we’re going to be able to come up with the funding,” he said.