“This has been a long time coming,” Mayor Says as Council Votes to Move Norgoma


After a lengthy discussion – 18 years, according to Coun. Niro – and much to the dismay of the St. Mary’s Marine Heritage Centre – a majority of this term’s City Councillors have voted in favour (a vote of 7-3) of the removal of the M.S. Norgoma from its home at the Roberta Bondar Marina.

What to do with the Norgoma, which has been on Sault Ste. Marie’s waterfront since 1975, and docked at Roberta Bondar since 1985, has been the controversial topic of many council meetings over the past 18 years.

Councillors voted on this matter as such (with the exception of Coun. Hilsinger, who was absent from this meeting):

  • Christian – In Favour
  • Niro – In Favour
  • Dufour – Against
  • Shoemaker – In Favour
  • Vezeau-Allen – Against
  • Gardi – In Favour
  • Hollingsworth – Against
  • Scott – In Favour
  • Bruni – In Favour
  • Mayor Provenzano – In Favour

So, what happens now? The SMMHC will have until Apr. 15 at the latest to get the ship moved – costing them $50,000 to have it towed to a dock at Algoma Steel (plus a daily docking fee of $40/day), provided by Purvis Marine, where it will be inaccessible to the public, potentially stripping it of its status as a museum ship and kiboshing any plans to film on it this summer.

If the Heritage Centre can’t afford this move, they’ll be considered “insolvent” and all costs will be absorbed by the City – including the daily docking fees and dismantling of the ship should that be the case.

Provenzano also told council he’s comfortable with taking on these costs to get the Norgoma – which he says is “sorely underfunded” – out of the marina, as it is hindering any upgrades and improvements, but said he’s also willing to work with the Heritage Centre if they can find a new home for the ship.


  1. I asked a local ship captain how much it should cost to move the ship. His answer $4000. 2 tugs @500 an hour gives you 4 hours to move it up the creek. Very reasonable in my view. You should be able to sell it for scrap and have it removed at no cost. If it costs anything to dismantle it should be parked beside the Edmund Fitzgerald.

  2. Mayor Provenzano’s signature act.

    Cleansing the waterfront of maritime heritage. Like the larger mayor of Buffalo when the S S Canadiana was scrapped, bringing pressure to bear on the removal of the S S Landsdowne and Aquarama. You should have seen him dance before the cameras. A lively fellow. He has the moves. America’s got talent.

    But Christian won’t have the TV dance. He’s too downmarket. Too backwater. But his lasting influence will be felt.

    Humiliating a faction of his citizenry.

    Nothing like vanquishing a foe.

    It was always about him.

    Good for him.

    He had a fulfilling life.

    His influence felt.

    Not many of us can say that.

  3. If they have any respect for public opinion they will change their mind and go with the owner and their ideas which are really nice. Oh NO the city wants to put it out of sight so no one can have access to keep it alive. How STUPID is that! 👎😢🤬🤬

    • Your vote for what?
      He is not running again.
      It’s long overdue that they took that floating scrap pile away and made room for something more eye appeasing.

  4. I sure am not comfortable for costs to be incurred and no lesson learned by the consequences.

    I mean by those responsible initially and then all who enabled the situation to go on for many years.

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