COURTENAY – An investment of $400,000 by the Island Coastal Economic Trust will improve and expand the Kelsey Bay Wharf, and will benefit the fishing industry, tourism, and the local economy.
The project – proposed by the Sayward Harbour Authority – includes the extension of the current float network, creating much-needed additional moorage.
A heavy-offload and timber approach float will also be constructed, which will allow for greater volumes of finfish and shellfish from the commercial fishery to be transported.
“More than half of the province’s commercial salmon fishery happens in the Johnstone Strait, and Kelsey Bay is a strategically-valuable site,” said ICET Board Chair, Phil Kent. “The community identified improvements to their wharves as an economic development priority, and our investment will help put their plans into action.”
Private sector investment from the fishing and processing industries are also planned for the site, with an ice plant and more efficient transportation systems being developed. Up to $2M in private sector investments are anticipated as a result of the work in this project.
Salmon offloading is expected to increase from 1M pounds to 6M pounds once the new float network and heavy offload floats are complete.
The project will also benefit other parts of the regional economy.
“Not only does this project support growth in a traditional fishing industry, it also allows our region to more effectively market itself to the marine tourist market,” said Ted Ellis, President of the Sayward Harbour Authority. “Modern, well-serviced moorage means visitors in boats have easy access to the amenities in our community, and that is a new source of traffic for our local businesses.”
The project will also include a new Harbour Services Office that will house a public washroom and commercial laundry facilities: two key pieces of infrastructure that are valuable for marine tourists looking for a place to tie-up for a few days. Cafes and other small amenities are also being proposed by private sector proponents, helping to add even more value for residents and tourists alike.
An economic impact analysis of the project estimates 5.7 temporary jobs and 15.4 direct permanent jobs will be created.
Completion of the project is anticipated for 2016.
About the Island Coastal Economic Trust
The Island Coastal Economic Trust is a $50 million endowment established in 2006 by the Government of British Columbia to help diversify the economies of central and northern Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.
ICET is guided by a Board of Directors and two Regional Advisory Committees which include more than 50 locally elected officials and MLAs and five appointees. This exceptional team of leaders collaborates to set regional priorities and build vital multi-regional networks.
Through a community-centred decision-making process, ICET has approved $49 million for over 135 economic infrastructure and economic development readiness projects on the Island and Sunshine Coast since implementing its grant program in 2007. ICET investments have leveraged over $276 million in incremental funding into the region.
A full overview of ICET can be found at www.islandcoastaltrust.ca
For further information:
Line Robert, CEO, Island Coastal Economic Trust, Tel. 250-871-7797 (Ext. 227), firstname.lastname@example.org
Mayor Phil Kent, ICET Chair, City of Duncan, Tel. 250-709-0186, email@example.com
Darren Kiedyk, CAO, Village of Sayward, Tel. 250-282-5512, firstname.lastname@example.org