Final Update of 2016

December 15, 2016

I am writing you today with a special message about the Parliament of Canada, which is your house, the people’s house. As your national legislature, it is one of the important democratic institutions in Canada. One of the great aspects of our Parliament is that we are so fortunate to have beautiful historic buildings in what we call the Parliamentary Precinct here in Ottawa’s Centretown neighbourhood.

The history behind these magnificent office buildings is one that is filled with excitement, intrigue, and many days of hard work.

After all is said and done, and the lights in the House of Commons go off after a day of debates, votes, and discussion on legislation that affects all Canadians, these buildings belong to you. They belong to the hard-working Canadian families from coast to coast.

One of the most exciting opportunities for families and people from across Canada is planning a trip to their nation’s capital. Ottawa is truly a beautiful community, and I don’t just say this because it’s where I work to represent the constituents of Bow River. I say it because it’s a marvelous city, there is lots to do and to see here. I think that every Canadian should come here and visit at least once if they are able to make the trek.

I write and invite each and every one of you to consider Ottawa as your travel destination in 2017. It’s particularly important for me to share this message with you as the Centre Block, the heart of Canada’s Parliament buildings, where the House of Commons and the Senate as well as the landmark Peace Tower are located, will be closing for at least 10 years. This is a conservative estimate, and other estimates I have heard say it will be closed for up to 15 years for the major overhaul and renovation that is required on this historic and critically important building for all Canadians.

That being said, if you are planning on visiting Ottawa, please contact my office at 613-992-0761 or martin.shields@parl.gc.ca. We would be happy to arrange for you to attend Question Period, or to give you a personalized tour of these incredible buildings.

On behalf of my staff in Ottawa, Brooks, and Strathmore, I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas, and a healthy and prosperous 2017.