Project Overview

This website highlights the concept to construct a multi-use facility at the Port of Iona on the Bras d’ Or Lake. It is recognized by the Central Cape Breton community that there exists grand potential in the region and that additional diversification of the existing tourism product is a prerequisite for sustainable economic growth. Scientific authorities have long reported that the Bras d ’Or Lake offers unique opportunities for marine science research which are practically unrivalled anywhere else in the world.

Concern for the environment and the increased acceptance of the realities of global warming has heightened environmental awareness among scientists, politicians, and the general public alike. Recent experiences with weather conditions have given immediacy to this issue for everyone, and in Atlantic Canada particularly, the example of dramatic decline of fish stocks has raised questions of sustainable environmental management never considered by earlier generations.

Loading pulpwood for export to Europe: Iona Port, 1989

CCBCVI plans to utilize local marine infrastructure assets by providing a shore-side educational facility that monitors and augments the workings of aquatic life in the natural laboratory that is the Bras d ’Or Lake, including showcasing a hands-on, capture-and-release fish system at the Barra Strait.
The economic and demographic challenges rural Cape Breton Island faces demand a contemporary vision, interpretation planning, innovative approaches, collaboration, and a greater willingness to take on calculated risk associated with those current changes.

There is no shortage of enthusiasm on the parts of the proponents. Local volunteers have been the key human capital component in our successful community-based developments. Baile nan Gàidheal | Highland Village Museum at Iona is an outstanding example of what has been accomplished by dedicated volunteers in the past.