End of Blue Boat drives innovation

Cancellation of the Blue Boat service in some ways could be a good thing.

Although many commuting military members might disagree, cancellation of the Blue Boat service in some ways could be a good thing.

An ambitious entrepreneur in Colwood is organizing the “Blue Bus” shuttle service from near the Military Family Resource Centre building in Colwood to CFB Esquimalt.

Although not as picturesque or efficient as motoring across the harbour in a boat (and not free), services such as this are what is needed in the face of defence spending cutbacks and few foreseeable solutions to easing traffic on Island Highway or the Trans-Canada Highway.

Although the Department of National Defence isn’t involved, the Blue Bus service wouldn’t be able to roll without ready-made parking on DND property behind the resource centre.

The daily cost to military commuters is less than a B.C. Transit fare, so it will be interesting to see the uptake of the service, or if military commuters will opt for cars once the boat is out of the picture at the end of this month.

At least the effort will kick the door open for the private sector to take a shot at moving people between the West Shore and Victoria.

Thankfully, CFB Esquimalt is also open to private boat operators shuttling personnel between the Colwood and Esquimalt sides of the base, which could be a precursor to an eventual civilian boat shuttle between the Royal Bay area and Victoria. (Update: Victoria Harbour Ferries announced Wednesday they close to sealing a deal with CFB Esquimalt on providing ferry service.)

In the meantime, most commuters will have to be content sticking with driving or taking B.C. Transit — after last week’s federal budget remained mute on matching $7.5 million  promised by the province, fixing up the E&N rail line remains as elusive as ever.

As a consolation prize for harried commuters, Saanich and View Royal announced the closure and construction of a new Craigflower bridge is deferred until January or July 2013.

Good money is probably on a summer closure, giving engineers more than a full year to figure out how to get kids and nearby residents over the Gorge Waterway during construction.

 

 

 

Just Posted

Cycslists were all smiles during ninth Tour de Victoria

More than 2,100 cyclists participated

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after Const. Beckett’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Police investigating incident in Saanich neighbourhood

Neighbours tell Black Press Media that a body has been found, but police remain tight-lipped.

Langford lizard sighting excites Victoria museum curator

Curator of vertebrate zoology/knowledge explains the spread of the Wall lizard in the region

Colwood man takes on Ride to Conquer Cancer for 11th year in a row

Team Finn has raised almost $3 million for BC Cancer Foundation

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Ferries employees participating in Denman Island cleanup for plastic-shedding ferry

The cleanup comes a few weeks after one organized by residents of the Island

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Toronto activist calling on federal parties to nominate more black candidates

Fewer than 20 black Canadians have been nominated so far, including some Liberal MPs seeking re-election

Most Read