Friday, July 17, 2009

"Sir Richard"..... big time thanks

I was eagerly on hand last night when this exciting major announcement was made and I couldn't help but think that this just might be the TSN Turning Point.... Katherine Hennessey and her band of merry "nimby's" were nowhere in sight other than Kim Devine quietly not knowing what to say... God love her but Katherine had been out for months badmouthing Mr. Homburg and his "projects" and stepped it up again this week going door to door but she couldn't find any real support... simply put the National Board of Directors of the Centre a unique group of individuals like the Hon. John Crosbie and Thomas Symons (founder of Trent University) and many others "UNAMINOUSLY APPROVED" this donation, the pedway and the 10 year naming of the "Homburg Theatre".... these Directors are very capable individuals who have been put in charge of the Confederation Centre and they have it's best interests at hand as they have shown here... Mr. Homburg and his Company have made significant investments in our City over the years and now during these tough economic times they have even stepped up their investments even further... and I don't get why Katherine believes she has some God given license to go out and knock Mr. Homburg as if he's the devil... in my opinion he should be "knighted" or at the very least receive the Order of Prince Edward Island.... on another note where was the Mayor and all those City folks who should have been there congratulating Mr Homburg.... Kudos to you Mr. Homburg...
Homburg donates $2 million to Confederation Centre
The Guardian
Richard Homburg, left, Premier Robert Ghiz and Wayne Hambly, chair of the board of the Fathers of Confederation Buildings Trust, climb stairs after unveiling the new name of the Confederation Centre mainstage. Homburg donated $2 million to the trust, of which $1 million will go to modernizing the theatre. Guardian photo
Richard Homburg donated $2 million of his own money to the Fathers of Confederation Buildings Trust Thursday and got the mainstage named in his honour and funding for an underground pedway to link to his new hotel. The donation was hailed as “a monumental decision’’ by Wayne Hambly, chair of the board of the centre, during an announcement at the centre’s upper foyer. “This is the largest individual gift ever in the Confederation Centre’s 45-year history,” said Hambly. The donation will be split two ways, $1 million being paid by the centre for a part-share of a $2.1-million pedway across Grafton street to Homburg’s new hotel. The other $1 million will go to update the theatre. “The theatre is showing its age,” said Hambly. Design proposals are now being sought for a new layout to improve sight-lines and improve acoustics, including removing the “diapers” on the roof, as artistic director Anne Allan calls the fiberglass triangles. There will also be new audio technology that might include translation services to guests. Improving the seating is also on the program. Hambly said that Homburg has a personal philanthropic mission. “In addition to being a business mogul, he is firm believer in giving back to the communities in which he works,” said Hambly. “I first met Richard about 25 years ago and since then I have witnessed his profound business finesse, his passion for the arts, his dedication to health and fitness and more recently, his love of the landscape and people of Prince Edward Island.” The meeting was told the Homburg family has a home in Charlottetown Homburg said his research shows that the germ of the Confederation Centre started in 1949, the same year that Homburg was born.“I really believe that the centre here is something for all Canadians but the thing is, it cannot always wait for handouts from governments,” he said. “That is why I believe in private and public partnerships. Governments will continue to fund and they have to continue to fund over the years but also private enterprise should do its share.” Homburg said the centre must do a lot more promotion as a national institution but it needs updating and maintenance work to bring it “into the 21st century.” He said many people have complained to him about the design of the centre, but Homburg said it was the modern style around the world in the early 1960s. “At that time everyone thought that was beautiful,” he said. Homburg called on others to follow his lead and make major donations to keep the centre viable. Hambley briefly reviewed Homburg’s history, saying that he arrived in Atlantic Canada from the Netherlands in 1972 to visit relatives and decided to stay. Now his Halifax-based company employs more than 3,000 people across Canada, said Hambley. His real estate holdings span the globe. To get government funding for the pedway, the project needed to meet the strict qualification requirements of the Building Canada fund which does not support private developments. The fund does, however, support tourism-related infrastructure so the Confederation Centre could and did apply to help pay for the pedway. In March, Gail Shea was on the Island to say that the federal government will contribute $525,000, the P.E.I. government will do the same and the rest will come from Confederation Centre, thanks to Homburg’s donation. Premier Robert Ghiz and Richard Brown, who represents the district around the centre, were in attendance for the province. Coun. Kim Devine was on hand for the city. “As everyone here knows, Mr. Homburg is playing an increasingly important role in the life of our province today,” said Ghiz. “His donation is truly a breathtaking act of generosity. “I have noticed that Mr. Homburg, every meeting I have with him, he likes to think big and I like to think big as well and I think it is going to make for a great working relationship.” Also attending Thursday’s announcement was John Crosbie, who last year became the lieutenant governor of Newfoundland and Labrador, and is a member of the centre’s board of directors, as is Homburg himself, joining just over one year ago.

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