City of Victoria to consider selling Harbour Road lands

Ralmax Group hoping to expand its operations on waterfront properties

The City of Victoria will entertain an offer from Ralmax Group of Companies to purchase four marine industrial lots on Harbour Road.

In an in-camera meeting last week, council voted 7-2 in favour of considering an offer.

“No decision has been made, only the decision to at least consider an option,” Mayor Dean Fortin said. “Whatever option is developed will be brought forward for council’s consideration … will be made public, (then) the public can weigh into the value of that through a variety of public processes.”

Ralmax currently leases land from the city between Harbour Road and the waterfront. It operates three companies on the that property: Ralmax Development, Point Hope Maritime and United Engineering.

Back in January 2011, Ralmax Group announced plans to upgrade and expand its operations with a major capital investment.

Coun. Ben Isitt and Coun. Shellie Gudgeon voted against the motion. Isitt argues the city has inadequate information to proceed.

Council has received no rationale about the cost-benefit analysis of selling rather than leasing, Isitt said.

Gudgeon and Isitt will host a public forum to discuss whether the city should ever sell public land, and if so, how.

The meeting takes place Wednesday, May 9 at 7 p.m. at the Garry Oak Room, 1335 Thurlow Rd. beside Sir James Douglas elementary.

rholmen@vicnews.com