New James Bay Passenger Service at Ogden Point

VICTORIA – Celebrating a quarter century of success in 2015, the colourful fleet of Victoria Harbour Ferry vessels has long delighted both locals and visitors with their various marine passenger services that link Ogden Point in James Bay to Selkirk Landing on the Gorge. On Saturday, 1 August 2015, they will inaugurate a new ferry stop at the Breakwater Barge at Ogden Point, enhancing an integrated route map that encompasses the length and breadth of Victoria’s popular harbour and waterfront facilities.
“We are delighted to partner with Victoria Harbour Ferry to provide a marine passenger service from the Breakwater Barge at Ogden Point to popular locations around the Harbour including Fisherman’s Wharf and the Steamship Terminal downtown,” said Ian Robertson, CEO, Greater Victoria Harbour Authority. “The Breakwater Barge has become a successful stage for arts and cultural events and we anticipate the new ferry service will only enhance its popularity and accessibility to the public.”
Called “James Bay Quay,” the new barge stop will be serviced by the 40-passenger James Bay Explorer (“Lynda Mae II”) that will make regularly scheduled return trips every hour and connect the Breakwater Barge to Fisherman’s Wharf and the Steamship Terminal in the Inner Harbour. The vessel will also carry bikes and dogs.
“We have long anticipated the opportunity to serve our James Bay community and the tens of thousands of people who walk the Breakwater every month,” said Barry Hobbis, VP of Operations, Victoria Harbour Ferry. “This new service will connect downtown to the cruise ship terminal, the Breakwater and Dallas Road for locals and tourists alike.”
The service will launch on 1 August with trips departing from the Steamship Terminal on the hour, Monday to Saturday between 1pm and 9pm. The vessel will return on the half hour from Ogden Point. Sunday sailings are from 11am to 7pm to accommodate the crowds at the new Breakwater open air market.
James Bay Quay will be the 17th ferry stop on an overall route map that provides integrated ferry services from the Ogden Point Breakwater through to the Inner Harbour downtown area and into the Upper Harbour, right up to the Selkirk Landing. More than 300,000 passengers ride the combined services each year and the popular weekend Victoria Harbour Ferry water ballet is featured in tourist videos and photographs seen around the world.
In order to prepare the barge to host a busy ferry stop, GVHA worked in partnership with Ralmax Group, Salish Sea Industrial Services, and others. Ralmax Group has invested considerable resources into upgrading the barge and they led the installation of the ramp, floats and platform that will be used for the new ferry stop.
Throughout August 2015, a number of community events and festivities are planned at Ogden Point and the Breakwater Barge, including “Seaside Cinema” open air film screenings, the new Sunday Breakwater Market hosted by the James Bay Market Society, and the popular “Show and Shine” on Saturday nights featuring cruise ships and classic cars. The full event schedule is listed on GVHA’s website.
The Breakwater Barge is located at Ogden Point directly adjacent to Pier A with spectacular views of the First Nations murals on the Unity Wall and the Olympic Mountains in the distance.