Key Project – Discovery Center Site Strategy Development

The City of Hamilton has begun to develop a strategy for the Hamilton Waterfront Trust Center property (formerly the Canadian Center for Marine Discovery Museum) and adjacent lands.

The strategy for these lands:

  • Define a vision for the site; and
  • Define a set of actions to implement the vision.

Although these lands are strategically located in the West Harbor, the old museum building is underutilized. This is the result of several factors, including the closure of the museum and the subsequent change of land ownership from federal to municipal government, as well as the constraints of applicable zoning regulations to attract new uses. , as well as the time that has elapsed since the initial establishment of the zoning policy and regulations, provides an opportunity to re-examine the land use options affected. Council directed staff to begin the process of developing a long-term strategy for the subject lands.

Staff reports:

We want to hear from you!

The City has begun an opportunity study as part of defining a new vision for the site. Your feedback is an important part of evaluating options and will be considered as part of the decision-making process when developing a strategy for the site.

Visit to respond to the community survey.

What lands are part of the study area?

The site is generally located on the western portion of Pier 8 comprising the Hamilton Waterfront Trust Center (former Canadian Discovery Center Museum) and adjacent lands, known municipally as 47 and 57 Discovery Drive.

Specifically, the lands under study include:

  • the Hamilton Waterfront Trust Center (former Canadian Marine Discovery Center building);
  • outdoor patio located north of the building;
  • landscaped area located to the east of the building;
  • parking area located south of the building (mapping has not been updated to reflect recent changes to parking configuration);
  • outdoor skating rink and surrounding park; and
  • existing restaurant (Williams Café).

Note: Lands excluded from the study area are parkway lands and lands subject to the City’s development agreement with Waterfront Shores which are generally located to the east of the subject lands.

Aerial map of the Hamilton Waterfront Trust Center (former Canadian Discovery Center Museum) and adjacent lands

What is the strategy development process?

The Discovery Center Strategic Framework includes a two-phase, four-step process:

  • Phase 1 – Strategy development (current phase)
    • Approve decision-making framework (Q4 2021 to Q1 2022)
    • Conduct an opportunity study (Q2 to Q4 2022)
    • Confirm the vision (Q4 2022 to Q1 2023)
  • Phase 2 – Strategy Implementation
    • Implement the Vision (Q2 2023+)

How can I stay involved?

Community and stakeholder feedback is important to the strategy development process. We’ll let you know when we add questions as we move through the process.

Contact the Municipal Territory Planning Service (MLDO):
Phone: 905-546-2424 ext. 2085
E-mail: [email protected]

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