July 24, 2017
Released: 1:29 p.m.
Winnipeg, MB - A new Winnipeg sign will be installed later this week and will be operational in time for the Canada Summer Games to help promote and build pride in the city Mayor Brian Bowman announced today.
Located at the Forks near the Festival Stage, the fifty-three foot wide sign will fully illuminate “WINNIPEG” in various colours with eight foot high lettering, and its installation will be one of the many legacy pieces of Winnipeg hosting the Canada Summer Games.
“Winnipeg will be welcoming thousands of visitors to our city as part of the Canada Summer Games,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “This sign, located at one of our busiest gathering places, is a great way to promote our city and will be an important legacy piece of the Games. I want to thank the Canada Summer Games Host Committee as well as the Forks North Portage Partnership for their support and contribution to making this legacy piece a reality.”
The Canada Summer Games are expected to attract over 4,000 athletes and coaches, 20,000 visitors, and is estimated to have a $150 million local economic impact.
The construction of the sign was funded by the City of Winnipeg through the Civic Initiatives Fund at a budgeted cost of $120,000. This funding was provided to the Canada Summer Games Host Society as part of overall pageantry support of $175,000 which included support for the countdown clock as well as firework displays throughout the Games.
“The Winnipeg sign is sure to become a city landmark,” said Jeff Hnatiuk, President and CEO of the 2017 Canada Summer Games Host Society. “We are pleased that it will stand as a reminder of the 2017 Canada Summer Games for years to come.”
Installation of the new Winnipeg sign is scheduled to be undertaken throughout the day on Wednesday, July 26. Its inaugural lighting will occur Saturday, July 29 during the Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Jeux du Canada Games Festival at the Forks, and is expected to be operational throughout the duration of the Games.
“The Forks is excited to be adding what will become another popular photo opportunity, with lighting and changing colours, to this area of the site,” said Paul Jordan, CEO, The Forks North Portage Partnership.
The City of Winnipeg derives its name from the Cree word “win” for muddy and “nippee” for water. An Indigenous trading centre prior to the arrival of the Europeans, Winnipeg was at the heart of the country's fur trade and instrumental in developing Canada's gateway to the west.
“Cities across Canada and the world use similar signage to help promote their cities to tourists and build pride in who they are,” said Mayor Bowman. “The Forks is one of Winnipeg’s busiest destinations, and it is my hope that with the addition of this sign, where tourists as well as Winnipeggers gather, it will help celebrate and recognize our city’s important historical contributions as well as our cultural diversity.”