CVRD, Malahat, marina create new boat launch

A cooperative venture between the Cowichan Valley Regional District, Malahat Nation and Mill Bay Marina will improve access to the Saanich Inlet and Salish Sea with a new public boat launch.

The plan is to build the launch on Mill Bay Road just north of Vedier Point, complete with parking for vehicles and boat trailers, by July 15.

“The cooperative agreement in place secures community access and use of a new boat launch which should serve the needs of local boaters for decades to come,” Area A (Mill Bay/Malahat) Director Mike Walker. “The relocation of boat traffic off the narrow Handy Road will make it safer for the local community to access the waterfront in this location, as well as providing boaters with more than ample parking and tie-down area at the new site.”

The launch is designed to operate at all tide levels, and will replace the old public launch on Handy Road.

Plans were already in motion to replace the Handy Road boat launch when the opportunity for the CVRD to work with the Malahat Nation arose.

“Malahat Nation welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with the broader community and local businesses on mutually beneficial developments that bring greater capacity to our Nation,” Chief Michael Harry said. “In addition to the new boat launch, Malahat Nation is also working on creation of a public waterfront walkway from Vedier Point to the north end of the reserve, which we encourage community partners to come forward to further extend to into Mill Bay Village.”

The old launch ramp will be removed, making room for an extension of the public waterfront walkway in front of the Mill Bay Marina. A smaller ramp will also be installed for access by dinghies and kayaks.