Greater Victoria Harbour Authority aiming for another record season

Successful 2012 also included a reduction in speeding in neighbourhood

The Sapphire Princess cruise ship sits at Ogden Point in early October.

The departure of the last cruise ship at Ogden Point last week capped a record-breaking year. But the increase in traffic continues to be watched closely by area residents.

In total, 503,675 passengers on 224 vessels arrived in Victoria between April and October, according to the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority.

“The significant growth in cruise (business) over the past 10 years has brought many benefits for the community,” said Sonterra Ross, the authority’s chief operating officer.

The 2013 season will see the visit of the first Solstice-class vessel, a massive 315-metre ship that carries 2,850 passengers.

The largest ship this season was 296 metres in length.

GVHA’s speeding reduction program, which temporarily suspends Ogden Point licences for lead-footed taxi drivers, has also shown early signs of success. Ross said 15 drivers had their licences pulled for three days after being caught exceeding the speed limit by commissionaires.

“Early analysis shows that speeding was reduced,” said Marg Gardiner, James Bay Neighbourhood Association president, adding the numbers apply to all traffic on Montreal Street, not just taxis.

She plans to release a full seasonal traffic analysis at the association’s Nov. 14 meeting. Gardiner said an average of 350 taxis and 40 tour buses make their way through James Bay with every cruise ship arrival.

“On three or five cruise-ship days, that’s a lot more traffic,” she said.

Ross said the GVHA has just concluded a market assessment of future business and early signs point to growth in the cruise industry.

“We’re looking at the 10-, 20-, 25-year outlook,” she said, adding any potential berth expansion would take place over a similar time frame.

dpalmer@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria mayor preparing to tour Alberta oil sands

Lisa Helps heads to Alberta after an invitation came from Calgary councillor Ward Sutherland

Disturbance near Saanich Plaza

Emergency crews on scene for Blanshard Street call

Canadian Premier League announces media partnership with international broadcaster

Langford Mayor Stew Young said partnership is a “big deal” for Langford

Canada’s first home game in the America Rugby Championships comes this Friday

It’s Canada versus Chile Feb. 22 at Westhills Stadium in Langford

Canadians spent more than $8 billion on pet-related items in 2017

Fifty-seven per cent of Canadian households own pets

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

POLL: Will you be wearing pink to take a stand against bullying

Schools and workplaces across Greater Victoria and around the province will be… Continue reading

Australian woman killed in avalanche while snowboarding at Whistler Blackcomb

The woman and her partner were reportedly rescued by ski patrol, but the woman died in hospital

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

Trudeau tells Canadians to listen to clerk in SNC-Lavalin matter

Privy Council clerk Michael Wernick delivered a blunt assessment at the House of Commons justice

Mueller report looming, new attorney general in hot seat

Robert Mueller is required to produce a confidential report to pursue or decline prosecutions

Regulator’s report unlikely to settle Trans Mountain pipeline expansion battle

The Trans Mountain pipeline will remain a controversial topic both in the political ring and out

B.C. woman shares story of abuse with church officials ahead of Vatican summit

Leona Huggins was the only Canadian in the gathering ahead of a historic summit at the Vatican

Galchenyuk scores in OT as Coyotes edge Canucks 3-2

Vancouver manages single point as NHL playoff chase continues

Most Read