A section of proposed Harbourfront Walkway between White Eagle Terrace and Battersea Road. (City of Nanaimo image)

A section of proposed Harbourfront Walkway between White Eagle Terrace and Battersea Road. (City of Nanaimo image)

Nanaimo’s proposed walkway extension estimated at $25-30 million

City asking for feedback on concepts to connect Departure Bay Beach and ferry terminal

The City of Nanaimo has come up with concept plans on how to extend the Harbourfront Walkway all the way to Departure Bay Beach, and now it wants to hear from residents.

The city announced today, June 11, that it is launching three weeks of public engagement around concepts for a $25-30-million project to connect the walkway from Departure Bay ferry terminal to Departure Bay Beach.

In late April, the city first showed aspects of the plan to its accessibility and inclusiveness committee. Over recent years proposals for the walkway have changed and notions of an elevated walkway have been put aside.

The city is now proposing an on-beach walkway below the Cilaire bluffs, with a lower walking path and an upper cycling path separated by a sloped median. The city says the project will include beach restoration and new public access points to the beach.

“The waterfront is really important to people. It is the heart of the community and enhancing and making it more accessible for everyone is a really important step forward,” said Mayor Leonard Krog. “Right now very few people see and enjoy that stretch of our waterfront from the ferry terminal to Departure Bay and would like that opportunity, people of all abilities.”

The city is sharing with residents a brochure and video and is asking people to fill out a survey on the project at www.getinvolvednanaimo.ca/waterfrontwalkway. Krog said he hopes people will take a serious look and let the city know whether the project should be a priority.

The proposed walkway will include a seawall near the ferry terminal “to minimize fill on the existing mudflats and estuary” and a bridge over Northfield Creek, the brochure notes. As well, “innovative headlands” will break up waves and limit erosion. The cycling and walking paths will include “regular access between levels” with steps, seating and beach access and the city is planning rest areas along the route with a variety of seating, picnic tables, “cycle parking” and wheelchair access points.

The city notes that private properties along the route extend to the shoreline and the city will work with owners to “secure the riparian rights.” Property acquisition costs, as well as a 30-per cent project contingency, are included in cost estimates. Various approvals will be required as the city will need to work with the federal and provincial governments and regional district and recognizes that the project would be built on traditional territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nation.

Krog said the “green shores” approach of the on-beach walkway was an immediately appealing concept, generally, to members of city council and he said it’s more than a buzz-phrase.

“You want to enhance the environment,” the mayor said. “You don’t want to damage it, you want to make it welcoming for wildlife, ensure that habitat is protected and enhanced and blends naturally into the environment.”

RELATED: Concept plans developed for walkway extension in Nanaimo

The city says it will explore grant opportunities but notes the scale of the project means borrowing will be necessary and so residents will need to OK the plans through either a referendum or an alternative approval process. No project timeline will be created unless city council decides to move forward on the funding and detailed design steps.

Krog said the walkway would be enjoyed not only by current residents of Nanaimo, but future generations, and said it would also be an “amazing attraction” for the city and promote businesses along the waterfront. He said as mayor, it’s his job to boost the community and thinks the walkway expansion would do that.

“I am enthusiastic about this and I hope it gets the community support that I believe it deserves because I think in both the short and long-term, this will be an amazing improvement for Nanaimo,” said Krog. “Given the stage the city’s at, given the desire to crawl out of the COVID world that’s been so restrictive and hard on people, this kind of a project, I think, is important.”



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Recreation

Just Posted

More and more graffiti has appeared in Ladysmith’s downtown core during the pandemic. (Cole Schisler photo)
Council creates rebate program to encourage graffiti clean up

Property owners can receive up to $50 to help fund graffiti removal

Rick Ruppenthal of Saltair will host a 12-hour talk-a-thon Friday, June 18 over Facebook live. (Photo submitted)
Talk-a-thon to focus on men’s mental health issues

Saltair man spearheading a campaign to generate more conversation during fundraiser

(File photo)
Poverty reduction survey identifies 10 poverty themes

Poverty reduction plan will be finalized in July 2021

Nanaimo-Ladysmith MP Paul Manly says he has no intentions of leaving the Green Party. (House of Commons image)
Island Green MPs have “no intention” of leaving the party after ‘heartbreaking’ departure

Manly, May only remaining Green MPs after Jenica Atwin left for the Liberals over internal disputes

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

For more than a year, Rene Doyharcabal and a small group of neighbours in Langley’s Brookswood neighbourhood have been going out every evening to show support for first responders by honking horns and banging pots and drums. Now, a neighbour has filed a noise complaint. (Langley Advance Times file)
Noise complaint filed against nightly show of support for health care workers in B.C. city

Langley Township contacted group to advise of complaint, but no immediate action is expected

A nurse prepares a shot of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Yukon Convention Centre in Whitehorse on Wednesday, March 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mike Thomas
Vancouver couple pleads guilty to breaking Yukon COVID rules, travelling for vaccine

Chief Judge Michael Cozens agreed with a joint sentencing submission,

An inmate in solitary confinement given lunch on Tuesday, May 10, 2016. THE CANADIAN/Lars Hagberg
22-hour cap on solitary confinement for youth in custody still too long: B.C. lawyer

Jennifer Metcalfe was horrified to hear a youth had spent a total of 78 straight days in isolation

Flowers and candles were laid on the driveway of the Weber home, where Kerri Weber was found dead in November 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria man to stand trial for death of his wife last November

Ken Weber is charged with second-degree murder of his wife, Kerri Weber

The discovery of a missing woman’s body in Nanaimo earlier this month is now being treated as homicide, say Nanaimo RCMP. (File photo)
Discovery of woman’s body in downtown Nanaimo now being investigated as a homicide

Amy Watts was found dead near Albert Street and Victoria Crescent on June 3

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens as Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents the province’s latest budget, April 20, 2021. The budget projects $19 billion in deficits over three years. (Hansard TV)
B.C. government budget balloons, beyond COVID-19 response

Provincial payroll up 104,000 positions, $10 billion since 2017

COVID-related trash is washing up on shorelines across the world, including Coldstream’s Kal Beach, as pictured in this May 2021 photograph. (Jennifer Smith - Black Press)
Shoreline cleanup finds COVID-related trash increased during height of the pandemic

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup reports litter from single-use food packaging nearly doubled

Most Read