Grand Opening of the Niagara Falls History Museum
By Lisa Dillon,In 2009, the City of Niagara Falls, in partnership with the Niagara Falls Board of Museums, embarked on a major renovation and capital expansion project for the Lundy’s Lane Historical Museum. The project included the restoration of the Museum building (originally the 1874 Stamford Township Hall – designated in 1974 as a place of significance under the Ontario Heritage Act) to stabilize the structure and improve the facilities within the Museum as well as provide access to the City’s nationally important War of 1812 artifact collection. The project involved the expansion of the existing Museum building to create a War of 1812 Visitor Centre on the Lundy’s Lane Battlefield and better preserve and interpret the City of Niagara Falls’ unique identity to both residents and visitors. The Museum has been rebranded to become the Niagara Falls History Museum. Our team worked on this project with Moriyama & Teshima Architects who were selected to provide architectural services for the proposed renovation and expansion. Our Facilities Planning team was involved in the architectural design process—reviewing schematic design drawings, and providing building systems and standards. Our Exhibitions & Events team along with Weatherston Bruer worked with Museum staff to develop the interpretive plan, content, and exhibition design of two permanent collection exhibitions—one on the War of 1812 with a focus on events in the Niagara Region, and another on the community history of Niagara Falls.
The opening was well attended and everyone seemed very enthusiastic about the new building and exhibits. There were several special guests, including elected representatives from all three levels of government in 1812-era costume, members of the armed forces, and costumed interpreters depicting 19th century figures and also celebrities with a connection to Niagara—Marilyn Monroe, Superman, John Lennon and Yoko Ono.
We are eager to hear your comments about the renovation of the museum. Let us know what you think!