Victoria's Inner Harbour Causeway to Undergo Revitalization

VICTORIA – For over four decades, the lower causeway promenade in the Inner Harbour has served as Victoria’s popular centre stage for community events and celebrations. As the nation prepares to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday in July 2017, the federal government through Western Economic Diversification Canada and Greater Victoria Harbour Authority (GVHA) will each contribute $250,000 to restore, renovate and revitalize this iconic public space for the first time since it opened in 1974.
“We are incredibly excited to work collaboratively with our partners to realize a dynamic new vision for Victoria’s treasured harbour causeway,” said GVHA CEO Ian Robertson. “I can’t imagine a better place to celebrate Canada’s special 150th birthday than in Victoria’s Inner Harbour with a revitalized causeway promenade as its centrepiece. We are grateful for the support and partnership of the federal government in this initiative.”
The main objective of the project is to repair and renovate the lower causeway. Tentative plans include: widening the useable surface area, removing planter boxes and terraced areas, re-surfacing the walkway to preserve its structural integrity, and adding new trees, gardens, benches and maritime-themed arts and cultural features. Heritage features will be preserved and enhanced while the causeway is modernized to increase public access and safety as well as to provide an enhanced visitor experience for both locals and tourists.
GVHA is sensitive to the significant heritage of this important public space and has a successful track record of revitalizing key heritage assets including the former CPR Steamship Terminal building (opened in 1924) and the Ogden Point Breakwater (opened in 1917).
The revitalization vision will be developed collaboratively and GVHA will ensure open and regular communication with the public during each stage of the project. No work will be done without the support of the City of Victoria and the City’s Heritage Advisory Committee. GVHA will work closely with them to ensure that important heritage features are preserved and maintained.
The Inner Harbour Causeway was added to Canada’s Historic Places Register in 1996. Designed by noted Vancouver architect Norm Hotson of Arthur Erickson Architects, it is a cherished feature of Victoria’s famous waterfront and features in tourist photographs seen around the world.
Renovation work will start in fall 2016 and the project is expected to be complete by July 2017—in time for the Inner Harbour to act as the natural centre stage for Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations.