Historic donation establishes the Teck Cominco Suite of Earth Sciences Galleries and brings the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame to the Royal Ontario Museum
The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) announces the largest corporate gift in its history from Teck Cominco Limited to the Renaissance ROM project. This landmark $10 million gift will establish the Teck Cominco Suite of Earth Sciences Galleries, the Teck Cominco Endowed Chair in Mineralogy and the Teck Cominco Digital Education Module in Earth Sciences, as well as create a new home for the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame at the Museum.
“We are proud to join the Museum and the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame in educating students and delighting Museum visitors with the wonders of the earth sciences,” said Donald R. Lindsay, Teck Cominco’s President and CEO. “Bringing the Hall of Fame to the new ROM is a natural fit, complemented by exhibits that investigate the link between Earth’s resources and everyday life. The ROM has boldly embraced a philosophy of innovation that resonates deeply with Teck Cominco.”
William Thorsell, the ROM’s Director and CEO, said: “This donation results from the initiative and vision of the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame and the generosity of a great corporate citizen in Teck Cominco. We will build three unique galleries within the Teck Cominco Suite, doubling the volume of ROM minerals and gems on display and opening up virtually limitless avenues for education. Our collections will be beautifully displayed in a restored space showcasing everything from precious gems to meteorites to spectacular crystalline gold. With this donation, we not only meet our objectives for earth sciences but also expand our scope, establishing a great future for education and research through a new endowed chair, by digitizing our collection and by bringing the history of Canadian mining to the Museum.”
The ROM’s mineral and gem collection is one of the Museum’s most renowned attractions. The future Teck Cominco Suite of Earth Sciences Galleries, scheduled to open in the Weston Family Wing in 2008, is expected to be a major destination within the Museum, comprising the Inco Limited Gallery of Minerals and Gems, the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame Gallery and the Gallery of Gold and Gems.
The Teck Cominco Endowed Chair in Mineralogy will establish a permanent new curatorial position dedicated to guiding future exhibitions, ensuring that educational content is constantly refreshed, and leading earth sciences research and acquisitions.
The Teck Cominco Digital Education Module in Earth Sciences will comprise electronic 3D scans of the most dramatic specimens from the ROM collection. In the ROM Digital Gallery, a special 32-seat classroom in the Learning Centre, students will use state-of-the-art technology to closely observe and manipulate priceless pieces at electronic workstations, allowing a virtual “hands-on” experience with these rare and valuable specimens.
"By virtue of Teck Cominco’s generous donation to the ROM, the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame will soon be in a much better position to assist with the education of the visiting public on the contribution of mining to society,” said Canadian Mining Hall of Fame Chair, Donald J. Worth. “This partnership will allow the Hall to enter the digital age. Using ROM-developed exhibit technology, inductees will be showcased on a fully bilingual, five metre by two metre, interactive touch screen. Exhibits will spotlight mining’s role in Canadian history, while also acknowledging today’s modern, high tech, minerals industry. We are particularly excited that down the road we will be able to establish satellite video units at other locations in Canada, to give the Hall a truly national spread.”
"The ROM has played a key role in reviving Toronto’s spirit of philanthropy, and has attracted support from the private sector and donors because it has presented an exciting vision of its future,” said Ontario Culture Minister, Caroline Di Cocco. “The best part is that the ROM’s renaissance has boosted public interest in cultural initiatives in general.”
The Teck Cominco gift represents the sixth-largest private donation in the 93-year history of the ROM. The new galleries will be part of the final phase of the Renaissance ROM renovation and expansion project, in which ten galleries will be created in the historic wings of the Museum after completion of the new Michael Lee-Chin Crystal wing, designed by Daniel Libeskind. Now under construction, the Lee-Chin Crystal will celebrate its public Architectural Opening and Building Dedication on June 2, 2007. The new ROM is expected to draw 1.6 million visitors annually.
For more details on the Renaissance ROM Campaign, please see the news release “Renaissance ROM Campaign Reaches $249.6 Million” at www.rom.on.ca/news/releases/index.php
Teck Cominco Limited is a diversified mining company, headquartered in Vancouver, Canada. The company is a world leader in the production of zinc and metallurgical coal and is also a significant producer of copper, gold, indium and other specialty metals. Its shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols TCK.A and TCK.B and on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TCK. Further information can be found at www.teckcominco.com.
Established in 1988, the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame honours those who have demonstrated outstanding lifetime achievements to the benefit of the Canadian minerals industry. Its more than 125 inductees are currently featured at two locations: in the University of Toronto’s Mining Building at 170 College Street, Toronto, and in the Mining Museum in the Lester B. Pearson Civic Centre in Elliot Lake in northern Ontario. The Hall is sponsored by the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum, the Mining Association of Canada, the Northern Miner newspaper and the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada. Four new members will be inducted into the Hall at its 19th annual induction ceremony, a gala celebration being held at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto, on Thursday, January 18, 2007. For further information, see Canadian Mining Hall of Fame.
The Royal Ontario Museum is an agency of the Government of Ontario. Opened in 1914, Canada’s largest museum of natural history and world cultures holds six million objects in its collections showcasing art, archaeology and natural science from around the world. Renaissance ROM is an ambitious expansion and heritage renovation project designed by Daniel Libeskind that will transform the ROM into one of North America's great museums and a leading cultural attraction for the city, province and country. For more information, please visit www.rom.on.ca/renaissance. For 24-hour information in English and French, please call 416.586.8000 or visit the ROM’s web site.