When a recent fire caused damage to the World's Largest Burl, the community voiced their commitment to showcase it in a more meaningful way. The Town Council voted to move the burl to a new permanent space at the gateway to downtown.
The Town of Port McNeill will build a new, permanent space closer to the main business and tourism areas to showcase the attraction
Community-led efforts to revitalize and enhance public areas into dynamic, welcoming, and prospering environments provide the foundation of the Community Placemaking Program. This initiative champions projects that contribute to beneficial social, economic, and environmental outcomes.
Economic Prosperity: By relocating the burl to a more central location, the new public space will better connect visitors to local businesses and amenities. The project is part of the town’s larger efforts to revitalize the waterfront and downtown.
Social Empowerment: A group of volunteers diligently maintained the previous site, on the western entrance to the townsite, and this projects empowers the group to showcase the burl in a more meaningful way.
Environmental Sustainability: The new public space is located along Port McNeill’s active transportation trails, encouraging more visitors to explore the downtown and waterfront on foot or by bicycle.
“A common characteristic among the folks on the North Island is to put in more than you take away. The volunteers behind our World’s Largest Burl resurrection and relocation exemplify that ideal. This undertaking is a great example of what can be done when hard working people share a vision.” – James Furney, Mayor, Port McNeill
“There are so many things to see and visit in Port McNeill and I admire all the hard work by volunteers to showcase more of this amazing town. I am excited to see the burl move to a place where more people can enjoy its natural beauty.” – Michele Babchuk, MLA for North Island
“This type of volunteer-led initiative highlights Port McNeill’s engaged community and showcases the local support of the town’s revitalization plans. Connecting important tourism attractions with local restaurants, retail stores, and supporting businesses in this manner is a proven strategy that can be replicated in many communities.” – Anthony Everett, President and CEO, 4VI
“Port McNeill is reimagining how this natural and historic landmark can connect tourists with local businesses. We’re investing in this project to support a community-led initiative that will create a vibrant and inclusive public space in the heart of town.” – Brodie Guy, CEO, Island Coastal Economic Trust.