Agreement reached to transfer ownership of Historic Hamilton Lighthouse and Cottage

For Immediate Release

January 28, 2022                    

Hamilton, Ontario – On behalf of the Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC), and the Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development joined Ian Hamilton, President & CEO of the Hamilton Oshawa Port Authority (HOPA Ports) to announce the conclusion of an agreement that will ensure the long-term preservation of this historic landmark.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) is transferring ownership of the historic Beach Canal Lighthouse and the nearby keeper’s cottage to HOPA Ports which will protect and keep them as part of Canada’s cultural heritage. The lighthouse and keeper’s cottage have recently been designated by Parks Canada under the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act.

HOPA Ports, working closely with local community partners Beach Canal Lighthouse Group, intends to reposition the lighthouse onto HOPA Ports property in order to complete a restoration of both structures and facilitate public access. The repositioning of the lighthouse structure is critical to allow for public access, and will serve as a focal point for the redeveloped Fisherman’s Pier zone.


“Partnering with communities to transfer ownership of heritage lighthouses like this to local organizations preserves these important pieces of Canada’s heritage. This transfer will not only enable the local communities to continue to visit the landmark, but will ensure they benefit from local investments in greenspace and improvements to safety and recreation for generations to come.” 

The Honourable Joyce Murray, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

“PSPC is pleased to have partnered with HOPA and DFO to facilitate the seamless transfer of this iconic lighthouse and keeper’s cottage. This transfer will allow for easier public access and ensure that its historical significance is preserved. I am looking forward for this project to be completed so that more Hamiltonians can take advantage of this integral part of Hamilton’s history.”

The Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Public Services and Procurement

“Lighthouses have long symbolized strength, safety, and safe harbour, playing a crucial role in protecting mariners. They are iconic symbols of our communities and are important tourism attractions that contribute to local economies. The Government of Canada is pleased to work in close collaboration with community groups and other levels of government to facilitate the designation of heritage lighthouses to ensure their protection for the future.”
The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

“Families in Burlington and Hamilton recognize the importance of restoring and protecting local heritage sites like the historic Beach Canal Lighthouse and Keeper’s cottage. The Government of Canada remains focused on providing access to important pieces of local heritage, and the finalization of this agreement will ensure that the Lighthouse is preserved for our community and its visitors to enjoy for years to come. I look forward to joining residents and visitors alike in visiting the Lighthouse at its new home at the Fisherman’s Pier.”

The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development

“This is a major step forward to realizing our goal to make Fisherman’s Pier a welcoming people place on Hamilton Harbour. Hamilton and Burlington share a proud maritime heritage. Fisherman’s Pier is one of the best places anywhere to get an up-close look at the big ships and to understand the continuing role of industry and maritime trade in our community’s economy and identity.”

Ian Hamilton, President & CEO, HOPA Ports

Quick Facts

  • DFO is contributing $275,000 towards the move and restoration of the tower.  Additional funds are coming from Hamilton Future Fund via BCLG; funds from HOPA advertising signage revenue; additional fundraising.
  • The Beach Canal Lighthouse is a 17-metre limestone tower with an iron lantern, built in 1858 and in operation until 1961
  • The Fisherman’s Pier redevelopment plan also introduces other elements to beautify and animate the area over the long term.  These plans include a destination park & angling amenities; improving the greenspace area extending from the canal to the intersection of Beach Blvd. and Eastport Drive, introducing landscaping, paths and recreational amenities and improving facilities for anglers.
  • At the Events plaza, improvements include creating an area around the relocated lighthouse and keeper’s cottage that will accommodate seasonal gatherings, interpretive features, public art, and pop-up seasonal retail with the canal as a backdrop.
  • One of the key objectives of our government’s divestiture strategy is to continue to provide a service to Canadians by disposing of surplus lighthouses to eligible recipients who wish to assume ownership to preserve the heritage value of the lighthouse and keep it accessible to the public. 

Associated Links

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For more information:

Larissa Fenn
HOPA Ports
Cell : 905-518-7632
[email protected]  

Claire Teichman
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
[email protected]  

Media Relations
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
[email protected]  

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Larissa Fenn

Vice President, Corporate Affairs

Larissa Fenn is Vice President, Corporate Affairs at HOPA Ports, leading a team responsible for communications and government relations, sustainability reporting, corporate governance and corporate culture.

Previous positions included communications and public policy roles at the Canadian Bankers Association, Credit Valley Conservation Authority, and the Regional Municipality of Halton.

Larissa holds a B.A.(Hons) in Political Science from Queen’s University. She holds the APR designation from the Canadian Public Relations Society, and completed the Senior Public Sector Leaders program at the University of Western Ontario, Ivey School of Business. Larissa has served as Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the Royal Botanical Gardens, and as a member of the Policy Council of the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.

Bill Fitzgerald

Vice President, Strategic Development

Bill assumed the role of Vice President, Strategic Development in 2024, after having served as HOPA’s Vice President, Operations since 2008.

Bill joined the Hamilton-Oshawa Port Authority in July 1995 as Project Engineer. He previously worked with the Regional Municipality of Ottawa’s Transportation Department, as well as for the Toronto Transit Commission and the City of Waterloo.

Bill received a Bachelor of Applied Science, civil engineering / water resources, in 1995 from the University of Waterloo and registered with the Professional Engineers of Ontario in 1997.

Jeremy Dunn

Vice President, Operations

Jeremy assumed the role of Vice President, Operations in 2024 after having served as HOPA’s Commercial Vice President since 2019. Prior to joining HOPA, Jeremy served in successive leadership roles at The Miller Group, one of Canada’s leading transportation construction and infrastructure maintenance companies. Jeremy has managed multiple business groups in the heavy construction, asphalt paving and aggregates sectors driving results through business restructuring, service improvement and strategic growth. In his most recent role, Jeremy served as General Manager of Miller Maintenance, responsible for managing and growing Miller’s highway maintenance business in Ontario.

Previous to The Miller Group, Jeremy held the position of Director of Operations for the Dunn Group of Companies.

Jeremy earned his Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) through Queen’s University. He also holds a Master’s Certificate in Project Management.

Janet Knight

Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Chief Financial Officer for the Hamilton-Oshawa Port Authority since 2008, Janet joined the HPA in 1998 as Accounting Supervisor and subsequently served as Controller.

Prior to joining the HPA, Janet held the position of Financial Analyst with St. Joseph’s Hospital, as well as various positions, including Marketing Communications/Research Lead with Zeneca Agro. Janet graduated from McMaster University in 1986 with a Bachelor of Commerce. She attained the professional designation of Certified Management Accountant in 1992.

Ian Hamilton

President & CEO

Ian Hamilton is President & CEO of HOPA Ports (Hamilton-Oshawa Port Authority). He assumed this role in 2017, after serving as the Port Authority’s Vice President of Business Development and Real Estate since 2008. Ian has been instrumental in developing working waterfronts in Hamilton, Oshawa, and Niagara by attracting new business and private investment, and creating an integrated marine network across Southern Ontario.

Ian possesses more than 25 years of experience in international transportation and logistics in Europe and North America, and has held progressively senior positions in the liner shipping industry, including Transatlantic Trade Director (Europe) for CP Ships and Business Development Manager for Hapag-Lloyd. Ian is Chairperson of the Association of Canadian Port Authorities, and holds positions on various other boards, including: the Chamber of Marine Commerce, the Hamilton Club, and Brigs Youth Sail Training.

Ian holds an MBA from Aston University (UK) and a BSc in business administration and economics from the College of Charleston, South Carolina.