CFB Esquimalt’s Blue Boat cancellation sparks parking concerns

Esquimalt residents and defence personnel tout need for solutions

Esquimalt resident Thomas Wybert stands along Lyall Street against a backdrop of a full CFB Esquimalt parking lot. He worries that the cancellation of the Blue Boat will prompt defence personnel who can’t find space in the base’s lots to park on residential streets.

Esquimalt resident Thomas Wybert stands along Lyall Street against a backdrop of a full CFB Esquimalt parking lot. He worries that the cancellation of the Blue Boat will prompt defence personnel who can’t find space in the base’s lots to park on residential streets.

With the potential for hundreds more vehicles to flood the area around CFB Esquimalt after the base’s Blue Boat ferry service is cut April 30, Thomas Wybert is bracing for more parking problems.

The longtime Esquimalt resident, who lives on Lyall Street not far from the main base parking lots, has long complained about defence personnel taking up residential side-street parking spaces.

“It’s going to get worse,” Wybert said. “Somebody’s going to get hit here because half the time when you come down a side street you can’t see because there’s trucks and everything else from dockyard parked there.”

But civilian defence and military personnel say they don’t have a choice, and are worried about competing for spaces with more vehicles starting in May.

“If you try to park from 7:35 a.m. on (and) unless there are at least two ships at sea, there is no parking,” said one navy wife, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Most base parking spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

There are 1,935 spots along Canteen Road, Lyall Street and at Signal Hill in Esquimalt. There is a mix of 503 assigned and general parking spots at Naden.

About 5,500 personnel work at CFB Esquimalt, though not all are employed at Naden and dockyard.

“I think parking is something that we’re always concerned about, in terms of being able to support the requirements of the workforce, because we know there are more vehicles than (parking spots),” said navy Capt. Craig Baines, commander of CFB Esquimalt.

A private cross-harbour ferry, park ‘n go busing and a carpool matching service are the focus of discussions at the base.

“Internally in Esquimalt we’re being challenged and the challenge is going to keep adding pressure, parking-wise, traffic congestion-wise,” said Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins.

The recent creation of a full-time bylaw enforcement officer position will help address parking violations, she said.

Darrell McLean, who retired from his inspector’s post at the Victoria Police Department’s West Division in Esquimalt last October, started work on Monday.

“That’s good news,” said Wybert. “If they have a bylaw officer and come around like they used to do … I think it’s a good idea.”

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

The City of Victoria is proposing a northern contraction from Haultain Street to Bay Street with a western contraction from Cook Street to Chambers Street for Fernwood. (Illustration/Google Maps)
Community association calls for input on Victoria boundary changes

City of Victoria proposes changes to neighbourhood borders

These are just a handful of Vancouver Island’s missing person cases. Clockwise from top left: Lisa Marie Young, Lindsey Nicholls, Micheal Dunahee, Jesokah Adkens, Belinda Cameron and Emma Fillipoff. (File photos courtesy of family members and police departments)
Gorge skull fragment could bring closure to one Greater Victoria missing person case

Skeletal remains found in Greater Victoria have not yet been identified

(Black Press Media file photo)
UPDATE: Sooke Road reopens after gas leak at Colwood Corners

SD62 warns afternoon buses could be delayed

SIG
Policing amid pandemic challenging, says Sooke’s top cop

Mounties document reduction in property crime and impaired driving

Victoria police will be working to arrest as many people with active warrants as possible during #VicPDWarrantWednesday May 12. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria police aim to make sweeping arrests during #VicPDWarrantWednesday

Officers working to locate people with active arrest warrants

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 rate creeps up again, 600 new cases Wednesday

One more death, 423 people in hospital with virus

B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham takes questions in the B.C. legislature in 2017. (Hansard TV)
UPDATE: B.C. will fund another year of fresh fruit, vegetables, milk in schools

John Horgan government working on school meal program

Surrey RCMP is releasing sketches of a suspect in an “indecent act” at the Coyote Creek Elementary playground on April 30, 2021. Police said the suspect was clean-shaven “during some interactions” and on “other occasions had stubble outlining a goatee and mustache.” (Images: Surrey RCMP handout)
Vancouver mayor-elect Kennedy Stewart addresses supporters in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver mayor says there’s no time to redo details of drug decriminalization plan

Kennedy Stewart says a federal election could see the small window of opportunity close on the city’s bid for an exemption from criminal provisions on simple possession of small amounts of drugs

Premier Mike Horgan received his first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. (Facebook/John Horgan)
More than 50% of people eligible in B.C. have received 1st vaccine dose

‘We’ve made extraordinary progress together over the past few weeks,’ says Premier Horgan

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of a Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu on May 8. (Black Press Media file photo)
Indigenous woman shot by police was holding a replica gun, says Ucluelet First Nation

Woman has been identified as a member of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation

Most Read