“Returning the radar dome will add a bit of historical legacy to the area,” said Major Kael Rennie, Chair of the Cold Lake Air Force Museum. As part of their delegation to Cold Lake City Council on September 26, 2017, Linda Dunn, curator at Cold Lake Museums, shared their plan to return a radar dome to it’s original site on the radar hill. The radar dome, which will be seen from highway 28, will be a static display the public can enter. It will be situated between the Cold Lake Museums building and their storage facility. Rennie explains, “The engineers gave us the plans, which we have given to our contractor. They are going to get back to us Friday. If everything goes as planned, they will pour concrete in October, and then a company will be coming from Ottawa to start constructing the dome.” The dome will be erected this fall, with a grand opening in the spring. Chris Holoboff, Chairman of the Cold Lake Museums Society added, “We are looking at a budget of $160,000 for the dome and concrete. We have $110,00 secured so far, and we are in the final stages of receiving a grant. It looks promising.”
Two years after the radar dome is complete, the museum is planning to build a 50 foot observation tower on the radar hill. Although the exact location for the tower on the radar hill isn’t known yet, they are looking at the area by the museum picnic tables or further to the south.
The Cold lake Museums, which is celebrating their 20th anniversary next summer, saw an increase of 1,500 visitors this season, and an increase in usage as an event venue. When the museum is open from May to September, they have an annual draw of 4,000-5,000 visitors. Next year, the museum is hoping to hire a program assistant for six months and to extend their opening season from the spring to the fall so they can include school tours and more special events.
City of Cold Lake Councillor Bob Buckle acknowledged the hard work and efforts that have been put into the museum. He added, “I would love to see the city, the museum, and arts and culture come up with a plan to build that area up. That area needs a master plan so we can build on it year to year. We have a real asset up there.”