JBNA: Where's BAPCo?

Submitted by the James Bay Neighbourhood Association

JBNA New logo - web.jpg

Transport Canada staff discussed remediation at Laurel Point with James Bay residents at the August 8, 2018 monthly meeting of the James Bay Neighbourhood Association (JBNA). A short CALUC presentation followed.

Laurel Point Remediation

Brad Klaver and Eric Crawford of Transport Canada presented details of the final phase of the Laurel Point remediation project. Laurel Point has a long and prominent history on Victoria's harbour. Originally a First Nations burial ground, the site has housed a 'palatial' residence, a furniture factory, a soap factory and the British America Paint Company (BAPCo) factory (1906 to 1975) prior to becoming the home of the Inn at Laurel Point. Transport Canada, in conjunction with the City of Victoria (CoV), have allocated funds to remove and replace the toxic substances and contaminated soil at Laurel Point. Metals and PCB’s are the major contaminates on the shore of what has been described as one of the more contaminated harbours in Canada. Transport Canada has completed some soil removal from the harbour and continues to monitor other areas, addressing the most contaminated areas first. The harbour floor is now relatively low risk; additional removal from the floor could do more harm than good, as it stirs up the sediment. Partners in this remediation project include Transport Canada (including the Victoria Harbour Master), Public Service and Procurement Canada, City of Victoria, Inn at Laurel Point, Songhees Nation and Esquimalt Nation.

Phase 1 of the project, sediment analysis was completed in February 2018. Approximately 2200 square meters of sediment from the harbour floor was removed by barge during phase 1. Clean sand was barged in to replace polluted sediment.

Phase 2 of the project, soil remediation, will remove soil and contaminants from Laurel Point Park. The majority of the soil up to a depth of seven-metres will be removed from the site for treatment, to be replaced by clean soil. This major disruption to the harbour, projected to take approximately one year, will ultimately leave Victoria with a newly designed park and walkway. The entire Park including the David Foster pathway will be closed from September 2018 until late 2019.

The contractor (to be determined) will be responsible for removal and storage of current site features; removal of trees and vegetation; removal of contaminated soil from the site by barge; and backfill of the area with clean soil (barged on site). Once remediation is complete, the contractor will re-install a basic pathway, landscaping, and RIP/RAP. Sarah Webb, Active Transportation Project Manager Specialist for the City of Victoria, has committed to returning to the JBNA for a review of trees, other vegetation and park improvements upon completion of the remediation project by Transport Canada.

Traffic Control will include temporary fencing erected during the project work, pedestrian detours and rerouting with signage to indicate the closure, reason for closure, and detour information. Work will be conducted Monday to Friday from 7am to 7pm Saturday 10am to 7pm. Temporary lighting will be installed to extend seasonal working hours.

Environmental Management will include: environmental monitoring, archeological monitoring, noise monitoring, air quality and nuisance odor monitoring, erosion and siltation monitoring, and geotechnical monitoring.

A more detailed description of the site and the project is on the City's website: www.victoria.ca/EN/main/residents/parks/harbour-pathway/laurel-point-park-remediation-project.html

Contact: TC.LaurelPoint.TC@tc.gc.ca 604-666-3528

CALUC - 589 Toronto Street

A Community Association Land Use Committee (CALUC) Rezoning application was presented for 589 Toronto Street to regulate current use.

Built in 1903, the structure at 589 Toronto Street is a designated heritage property. The owners plan to raise the house and construct a stable foundation for the building. In order to obtain a building permit, the owners are required to rezone to bring current use into compliance. Currently duplex zoned, the rezoning will make the building a triplex, legalizing the existing 3rd suite which has been in operation for more than 20 years.

The current owners purchased the home in 2015, understanding that the foundation is in a deteriorated state requiring replacement. There are two suites occupying the main floor and 2nd floor. The third suite on the upper floor is the illegal suite. There is no parking on site. The owners hold two city parking permits with the property. Although the owners requested a third parking permit they were informed by the City that none are available. Six bike parking stalls are included in the redevelopment of basement and house foundation. The building height will remain as it is now. Setbacks will remain the same with the exception of the east setback facing the James Bay Inn, decreased to allow for the basement access. The house will be lifted temporarily to complete the work. The contractor will be bound by CoV noise policy for building contractors and construction during the five to six months planned construction period. Insulation will be added to walls and ceilings. Electrical and lighting will be upgraded. Baseboard heating will remain the primary source of heating. Two of three brick chimneys will be reconstructed from the roof up to retain appearance. The third will be dismantled because of safety issues. Existing landscaping will be retained if possible.

James Bay residents at the meeting supported the efforts of the owners to preserve the heritage building, while bringing it up to current standards.


Local Area Planning at sxʷeŋ’xʷəŋ taŋ’exw James Bay Library - Saturday September 8 from 10:00 to 2:00. Drop by this open house to offer your ideas for the Menzies Street corridor.

Plant Swap and Sale - Irving Park – Saturday September 8 from 10:00 to 12:00.

Regional Housing - The CRD has posted a Request for Proposals for creating new affordable rental housing units for low to moderate households, and housing units to address the needs of people experiencing homelessness within the Capital Region. The second submission deadline is January 2019.

Next Month - Join us on Wednesday September 12, 7-9pm at 234 Menzies Street for a presentation from Canada Coast Guard and Department of Fisheries and Oceans on changes to Huron Coast Guard base and a CALUC rezoning application for 38 South Turner.

Truth and Reconciliation Report 6

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