The company behind the heritage restoration of the Cambridge Mill has been selected to restore and redevelop the Toronto Power Generating Station in Niagara Falls.
Pearle Hospitality plans to transform the long-abandoned structure, built near the brink of the Horseshoe Falls in 1906, into a dining destination, "boutique accommodations," art museum and spa at a projected cost of for more than $200 million.
The redevelopment plans will prioritize public access with several indoor and outdoor public viewing areas, says a press release from Niagara Parks.
Designed by renowned architect E.J. Lennox, the architect behind old Toronto City Hall and Casa Loma, Toronto Power is a National Historic Site and former hydroelectric power station built on the banks of the upper Niagara River overlooking the iconic Canadian Horseshoe Falls.
Toronto Power supplied electricity for communities across Ontario before ceasing operations in 1974. Since that time, it has sat dormant.
“Toronto Power is a globally recognized landmark of Canadian architecture and industry that has stood as a central feature of the Niagara Falls landscape for over a century," said April Jeffs, chair of the Niagara Parks commission, in the release.
“Niagara Falls is already an iconic destination. Our vision for this project will let visitors enjoy the Falls experience in exactly the type of breathtaking hospitality venue that one of Canada’s foremost natural wonders deserves,” said Brian McMullan, director of business development and spokesperson for Pearle Hospitality in the release.
A Letter of Intent has been signed between Niagara Parks and Pearle Hospitality, commencing four months of planning and consultations that will include the creation of heritage studies, environmental and archaeology assessments and contract negotiations on a lease agreement.
Niagara Parks says "the revitalization of Toronto Power is an opportunity, through private sector investment, to preserve a significant piece of Ontario and Canada’s history and provide it with a new purpose as an all-new visitor experience and demand generator for the Niagara region, Ontario and Canada."
While the project offers immediate financial benefits, including providing an additional revenue stream for Niagara Parks, the broader economic impacts of this type of investment and redevelopment are immense, says the release.
Over the four-year restoration and the first five years of operation, the project is expected to have an estimated GDP impact of $300 million, create over 9,500 jobs, and generate $98 million in taxes to all three levels of government.
More details on the redevelopment plans are available here.