2019 Comox Valley Year In Review: September

Courtenay Business association opposes cantilevers; Comox seeks CAO

  • Dec. 30, 2019 6:00 a.m.

DCBIA opposes cantilevers

The Downtown Courtenay Business Improvement Association voiced its opposition to council’s decision to include cantilevers in repairs to the 5th Street Bridge. The DCBIA asked for a re-think of a pedestrian crossing at 6th Street.

“This addition (cantilevers) is not going to create a safer place for people to ride their bikes past pedestrians walking along the bridge simultaneously,” DCBIA president Jenny Deters said at a council meeting. “In fact, we think it could be potentially more dangerous, especially with the lack of infrastructure currently leading up to and off the bridge. We are struggling to understand how this small and less-than-effective upgrade to the walkway warrants an additional two months of hardship to the community, and $2 million to taxpayers.”

With cantilevers, bridge repairs will cost about $8.3 million, and take eight months to construct.

Zip line opens

Part of a new zip line opened at Mount Washington Alpine Resort. The first guests took to the air on the Hawk Excursion – two spans which include a 501m long section with a 395 vertical drop, along with a 723m section with a 427 vertical drop. The line, which is being con- structed by ZipRider based in Park City, Utah, is set to be 2.3km long with speeds approaching 100 km/hr.

First pot shop opens

A government cannabis store opened at the Washington Park Shopping Centre in Courtenay, the second of its kind to open on Vancouver Island. The first government store opened in Campbell River.

Request for nuisance bylaw

A Courtenay resident said her health has suffered and her safety has been compromised because of what she deems to be criminal behaviour at a neighboring property. Which is why she asked council to implement a Nuisance Abatement Bylaw, similar to one implemented last year in Prince George.

“Courtenay has changed, and we need a strong and enforceable set of bylaws that protect people like me. There are many of us in the Valley who have been terrorized by our neighbours. Some are put in this situation because of unscrupulous landlords who continue to dupe police, government and City officials by renting properties to criminals.”

Comox seeks CAO

The Town of Comox announced Richard Kanigan is no longer CAO of the municipality. The Town said it’s decided to embark on a new direction for management of its organization. Kanigan joined the Town in June 1996 as deputy clerk. He was appointed CAO in March 2003. Later in the month, the Town hired Al Kenning as interim CAO.

Arsonist sentenced

Jacob O’Neil, 21, was sentenced to nine months at a correctional centre for setting fire to the Cona Hostel next to the 5th Street Bridge in Courtenay. He pleaded guilty to setting the fire March 23. An estimated 22 hostel occupants vacated the building unharmed.

Shipping container home

The doors opened on the Comox Valley’s first shipping container home. Representatives from Comox Rotary and Dawn to Dawn: Action on Homelessness Society, the two groups spearheading the project, joined guests at Courtenay’s Maple Pool Campground, the site where the shelters will be housed. The home is to be joined by three others over this next year.


Concert for food bank

The final performance of the 2019 Simms Summer Concert Series provided a big boost for the Comox Valley Food Bank. An estimated 1,400 people attended the My Generation Woodstock tribute concert at Simms Millennium Park. The concert doubled as a food drive for the Comox Valley Food Bank. And what a drive it was. Concert-goers contributed approximately 1,200 pounds of food, plus $2,264.10 to the Comox Valley Food Bank – nearly double last year’s cash donation total.

Writer pens opera

As a writer and a visual artist with a background in theatre, Amanda Hale had no intention of writing an opera. But a trip to Pompeii served as the catalyst for the part-time Hornby Islander to write Pomegranate – which she believes is the first full-length lesbian opera in Canada.

Trilogy completed

Betty Annand, 92, of Courtenay, published the final instalment of her Gladys Tunner trilogy, much to the delight of her fans.


Farm Cycle Tour

The ninth annual Comox Valley Farm Cycle Tour celebrated cycling, local food, farmers and producers. As they toured farms, wineries and breweries, cyclists enjoyed food and drink samples, watched cow milking and maple syrup production, and got lost in a hedge maze.

Lodge recognized

Two Eagles Lodge received the 2019 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence. The bnb has earned the distinction for nine consecutive years. It also earned a place in the TripAdvisor Hall of Fame.


Whistlin’ Will wins buckle

Will Gee, aka Whistlin’ Will, was crowned overall 2019 SASS Canadian National Champion, taking home the big belt buckle at the Single Action Shooting Society (SASS) 2019 Canadian National Championships at the Fish and Game Club. Club members Phil Peterson, Ed Gee and Ken Cornish also won their categories.

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