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Peel designates $203,000 for temporary storage of PAMA collection 

January 19, 2023   ·   0 Comments

Artifacts will slowly return to PAMA after mould remediation work

By Zachary Roman

Soon, artifacts will begin returning to the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives (PAMA) after some time away.

During regular maintenance and inspection in May 2019, level one mould was discovered in PAMA’s museum storage. It unfortunately impacted about 18,000 artifacts in the museum’s collection and something had to be done.

In 2021, a contract was awarded to a company called Museum Pros for completion of mould remediation and storage of PAMA’s collection. The 18,000 artifacts were transported to Museum Pros for cleaning, and the company then began mould remediation work and HVAC upgrades at PAMA. 

The mould remediation work and HVAC upgrades at PAMA were completed in December of 2022, while mould remediation of the PAMA collection is scheduled to be complete at the end of this month. Once artifacts in the collection are ready to be returned for storage at PAMA, they must be individually catalogued, photographed, and packaged. 

“Due to the intensive return process and limited onsite processing space, the collection must continue to be stored offsite and returned to PAMA incrementally,” reads a staff report from Gary Kent, Region of Peel Chief Financial Officer, presented to Regional Council at its January 12 meeting. “Incremental return of the collection will begin in February 2023 and is projected to take 2.5 years to complete.”

At the January 12 meeting, Regional Council approved on consent a motion to award a contract for the supply of storage services for PAMA’s historical collection be awarded to Museum Pros “in the estimated amount of $203,000.00 (excluding applicable taxes), for a contract period of 30 months pursuant to Procurement By-law 30-2018, as amended.”

Region of Peel staff considered storing the artifacts temporarily at region-owned facilities, however the cost of security and HVAC upgrades needed to properly store the artifacts would have been too high to make it worth it. As well, it would have taken too long to implement the necessary upgrades. In Kent’s report, he noted that museum artifacts would suffer significant degradation if they were not stored in the proper climate-controlled conditions.

Funding for the Museum Pros contract will be provided through the Region’s operating budget in an interim period, as the Region’s 2023 budget is not yet approved.

“Staff have determined that the cost of continued offsite storage for the PAMA museum

collection represents fair value to the Region of Peel,” reads the report. “Staff will work closely with Museum Pros to ensure that the return of artifacts is completed to the highest standards, within the projected budget and timeline.”



         

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