COURTENAY –  The next stage of a Cowichan Bay revitalization is expected to get underway in early 2020, with establishment of a ‘Patio Portal’ located at the Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre.

Led by the Cowichan Bay Wooden Boat Society, with support from the Island Coastal Economic Trust and other funders,  the ‘Patio Portal’ will improve public access to the Cowichan Bay waterfront.  The portal will create a connection between the pier, the Maritime Centre and nearby businesses, establishing a new waterfront gathering place.

The 800 sq. ft. patio structure will provide an inviting area for residents and visitors alike, with large sail-mast shades, a wooden boat playset for children, and interpretive panels to learn about Cowichan Bay’s maritime history.

“The Patio Portal has been designed in a way that blends into the existing structures of the Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre while giving it a maritime feel, reflecting the community’s unique history and culture,” said Society President Ion Barnes. “It will become a focal point for tourists and residents, providing another great reason to visit Cowichan Bay.”

The project is part of a broader community revitalization process, anticipated to attract more visitors to the Cowichan Bay Maritime Centre and surrounding businesses.

“This project is a direct outcome of the Cowichan Bay Village Vitalization Strategy which noted that that waterfront could become a more valuable tourism asset with better infrastructure,” said ICET Chair Josie Osborne. “Built at street-grade level, it will provide increased accessibility for all ages, and has the potential to be the catalyst for other community-based projects.”

The Patio Portal will also provide a venue for new events such as live entertainment, outdoor art events and other special events.

Completion is anticipated for Summer 2020.


About the Island Coastal Economic Trust
Created and capitalized by the Province of BC, the Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET) has been at the forefront of economic diversification, planning and regional revitalization for the past 13 years.

ICET is independently governed by a Board of Directors and two Regional Advisory Committees which include more than 50 locally elected officials, MLAs and appointees from the Island and Coast. This exceptional team of leaders collaborate to set regional priorities and build vital multi-regional networks.

Through a community centered decision-making process, ICET has approved more than $52 million in funding for over 200 economic infrastructure and economic development readiness projects. These investments have leveraged over $270 million in new investment into the region creating more than 2500 construction phase jobs and 2650 long term permanent jobs.

A full overview of ICET can be found at

For further information:
Line Robert, CEO Island Coastal Economic Trust Tel. 250-871-7797 (Ext. 227)
Mayor Josie Osborne, ICET ChairDistrict of TofinoTel.
Sharon McLeodCowichan Wooden Boat SocietyTel.

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