IHS unveils plan to increase McLean Mill-train revenue

A new agreement between the city and IHS promises to increase ridership on the Alberni Pacific Railway and introduce train station vendors.

A new agreement between the city and Industrial Heritage Society promises to increase ridership on the Alberni Pacific Railway and introduce vendors at the train station.

City economic development manager Pat Deakin announced the agreement at council’s June 23 meeting.

Some of the initiatives include discounted rides ($33) for local residents and corporate packages valued at $1,500. Also added is a frequent passenger punch-card where every fifth ride is free. “We hope this translates into more riders,” Deakin said.

Commercial vendors will be allowed to set up inside the train station on lower Argyle Street for the first time, Deakin said.

Vendors will set up in the station’s main lobby, and will sell pop and jewelry items, he said. The vendors won’t interfere with sales of similar items at nearby businesses though. ‘We don’t want to step on toes,” Deakin said.

The move may result in permanent vendors at the station as of next summer.

The PEAK radio will promote the new initiatives in exchange for a corporate pass. Nichelle Portrait Studio will provide photography services to be used for promotional services for two family passes.

Long term plans include changing the layout of the non-heritage section of McLean Mill—that being the visitors’ centre compound. One possible change being considered is moving the restaurant to the exhibit space. As well, the IHS will review its 2007 strategic plan at the end of this season with an eye to developing a new one.

McLean Mill is listed as a national historic site and has been so since it opened in 2000.

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