Ottawa Tourism unveils new destination development funding program

Ottawa Tourism’s 2018-2019 board of directors was confirmed, and a new funding program was announced at a tourism mega event held yesterday at the Shaw Centre. More than 170 members of the tourism industry attended.

The industry came together at this unprecedented event to network, and to learn about the activities, successes and operations of Ottawa Tourism, as well as to gain insights into how their businesses fit into the broader tourism landscape at the local, provincial, and national level. The day included the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario’s (TIAO) annual general meeting, Ottawa Gatineau Hotel Association’s (OGHA) AGM, Ottawa Tourism’s annual general meeting (AGM), the Tourism Industry Association of Canada’s (TIAC) Town Hall meeting and was capped off with a tourism industry reception.

The Ottawa Tourism AGM featured President and CEO Michael Crockatt speaking about tourism highlights from the past year and directions for 2018, as well as the election of Ottawa Tourism’s board of directors. Among the highlights of the 2018 direction is a new partnership between the Ottawa Festival Network and Ottawa Tourism that will see the two organizations collaborate on research, projects, and processes with the goal of supporting cultural events that significantly attract visitors and animate the city.

Following the Ottawa Tourism AGM, the Tourism Town Hall offered attendees an opportunity to learn about Canada’s broader tourism landscape. Special guest Jean Cloutier, City Councillor, was present to announce new funding through Ottawa Tourism’s Destination Development Fund (DDF), encouraging the creation of new attractions, events, festivals, experiences, and projects that provide user-friendly ways for visitors to enjoy Ottawa’s many unique sites. Approximately $1 million is forecasted to be available as DDF funding through five distinct streams:streams:

  • Attractions, Facilities, and Tourism Infrastructure Projects
  • Tourism Innovation Fund
  • Tourism Project Studies
  • Expansion of Regional and/or Niche Tourism Opportunities
  • Festivals and Events

The DDF rounds out three important new funding allocations through Ottawa Tourism which go toward further developing the Ottawa destination. The other two funds, the Convention Development Fund and Major Event Fund, were announced just last week.

“The Destination Development Fund is an absolute game changer for Ottawa and the local tourism economy. It tells the world that we recognize the value of destination development as an important factor in keeping Ottawa as an innovator in the visitor experience, which is key to our ability to compete successfully as a destination,” says Michael Crockatt, President and CEO of Ottawa Tourism.