Facilities at Montmorency Falls tourist site to get a $33-million upgrade

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One of Quebec's most popular tourist sites is getting a $33-million makeover.

Montmorency Falls is one of the most visited tourist sites in the Quebec City region, second only to Old Quebec. It attracts some 970,000 visitors each year, about half of which come from outside the province.

"First of all, it's very historic and it's higher than Niagara Falls, so that gives it some credit. We just really wanted to see it. It's one of those landmarks that is not to be missed," said Ellen Peach, a tourist from Tennessee.

The money will be spent to build a new rest area and play zone for children at the base of the falls. The site will also feature a Victorian-era English garden, plus more picnic tables and more parking.

The manor at the top of the falls is also getting an upgrade, with more space for the boutique, the restaurant and administrative offices.

The announcement comes as workers at Quebec's provincial parks and five tourist sites are set to walk off the job in a general strike beginning July 20.

SFPQ union president Christian Daigle said he's pleased about the announcement, but said the government needs to consider those who run the site, too.

"It's very good because they're jewels for us in our province, but the people who maintain them are workers and they don't have anything at the table now for them," he said.