LANGFORD – Breaking News
Monday, May 21 ~ LANGFORD. There is no lack of interest for the opportunity to live in the growing Langford area. As the city grows, people are seeking the west side lifestyle in locations that are convenient and affordable. [View this article on its own page]
It was only May 5 when the Sales Centre opened at Belmont Residences in west Langford and already about 500 groups have come through to see the show suite and find out more about suites available in the 80-unit Phase 1 condo building.
“Currently we are in the preview stage of the program,” says Peter Gaby, sales director with DFH Real Estate Ltd. Sales start in the first half of June; appointments recommended for interest in early purchase.
“People view the sales centre which has the architectural model, wall graphics and digital screens outlining the product offering, the master plan and points of interest in the area as well as a 2-bedroom-plus-flex fully merchandised show suite,” Gaby said this week. The flex room is a popular feature which can be used for a home office, hobby room, exercise room or storage.Most comments from sales centre visitors have been positive. “The location, the design layout and functionality of the suites, the quality and attention to detail in the suites in a master plan community is what they are most impressed with,” Gaby says.
People are glad to hear that the 160,000 sq ft of commercial/retail space will be completed prior to Belmont Residences occupancy in early 2020. That includes Thrifty Foods grocery store as the main anchor tenant.
The sales centre is located on Division Ave (just off Jenkins/Kelly) across from the Westshore Town Centre.
The clinic will be open 12 noon to 6:45 pm. Appointments can be made at www.blood.ca or just drop in.
The reception process includes a screening by filling out a questionnaire on one of the mobile computer stations. Questions from a nurse are also part of that process for new donors.
Wednesday, May 16 ~ LANGFORD. A presentation for parents about ‘Raising Digitally Responsible Youth’ will be held this evening, Wednesday, May 16 at 7pm in the theatre at Belmont Secondary School, 3041 Langford Lake Road.
“With society heading in a direction of being constantly connected to technology, what do we need to know as parents to protect our kids and teach them responsible and appropriate use of technology?”, it was pitched to parents by the SD62 school district.
“The parameters of rules and expectations that you put in place at home will undoubtedly guide their behaviour in the years to come.”
- Social Media Update – The most current apps & trends in their social media lives.
- Pick Your Battles! – You will have to balance the yin with the yang, promote independence whilst taking a strong stance on certain subjects.
- Current Research – Brain development & technology, violent video games.
- Digital Footprint and Reputation – With their future approaching, recruiters and employers are taking note – what will they find?
The presentation will be delivered by Safer Schools Together – an organization focused on promoting a climate and culture of safety in schools through comprehensive education. www.saferschoolstogether.com
Tuesday, May 15 ~ VICTORIA. [View this article on a separate page] It was a tough crowd for an NDP Premier — a room packed with about 400 chamber of commerce members and business leaders at the Crystal Garden in downtown Victoria — who at least in part would be expected to take some issue with the left-leaning policies of Premier John Horgan’s NDP government. [Horgan is the MLA For Langford-Juan de Fuca]
In less than one year in office, Horgan has rapidly rolled out numerous policy adjustments and new directions for British Columbia that are changing the socioeconomic landscape of the province in notable ways.
In a nutshell, that’s to make life more affordable for all British Columbians, he is oft heard to say. But that has come with almost seismic shifts in some areas of taxation — some that businesses consider punitive (such as the Employer Health Tax) but others that ‘help’ such as eliminating PST on electricity for businesses by 2019 and reducing the small business tax rate from 2.5% to 2.0%.
A seasoned, relaxed speaker, Horgan was comfortable at the podium but was careful to put a business or economic context around every potentially controversial portion of his 35-minute speech. He covered the gamut from justifying the BC Speculation Tax and the shift from the Medical Services Program (MSP) to the Employer Health Tax (EHT), to defending his government’s stance spawned by the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project to protect the coastal environmental in the event of an oil spill.
At least twice he emphasized “not social policy but economic policy”, specifically with regard to providing more and better child care, and working to full reconciliation with indigenous peoples.“The economy, environment and people are inextricably bound together,” said Horgan, saying that “everybody benefits” from the economic success of addressing all of those socioeconomic components of governing a thriving province like BC. Underpinning that is public education.
“Given the opportunity and tools of education we can achieve anything – the greatest tool at our disposal is public education,” Premier Horgan suggested to the crowd, referencing both K-12 and post-secondary. He was proud to remind the room that one of the first things his government did after taking office in July 2017 was to eliminate tuition fees for adult basic education and English language learning.
In the audience today were several BC Cabinet ministers, including Finance Minister Carole James and Education Minister Rob Fleming. They sat with Premier Horgan at the same table as Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps who at the end of the event presented Horgan with a painting by an indigenous artist from the Cowichan area.
Also present from NDP ranks were Victoria MP Murray Rankin and Esquimalt-Saanich-Sooke MP Randall Garrison. Various municipal mayors and councillors attended, including View Royal Mayor David Screech, Oak Bay Mayor Nils Jensen, Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins, Langford Councillors Lillian Szpak and Denise Blackwell, and Oak Bay Councillor Hazel Braithwaite.
This was a five-Chamber event with members from the Greater Victoria, Saanich Peninsula, WestShore, Sooke Region and Esquimalt Chambers.
Horgan outlined how there is now — thanks to NDP housing policy — the opportunity for post-secondary to build student housing “without coming cap in hand to the treasury board”, as a way to free up housing stock in the community. This also provides housing-supply opportunities for the development and construction communities.The overall thread of the speech was to demonstrate the potential for productive interface between the social directions unfolding from the NDP and what the business community can do to benefit and prosper through attention to the well-being of people and communities. People who can find affordable places to live are therefore available for employment in high-demand business regions. Families that can access reliable quality child care can then afford for a second parent to join or rejoin the workforce.
Overall the crowd’s mood was polite and attentive. But there likely weren’t many converts to the government’s position on two things of most concernation to vocal leaders in the business community — the BC Speculation Tax and the EHT that is set to replace the outgoing MSP.
Regarding transportation congestion issues in the Greater Victoria area, Horgan was asked if he would support a Regional Transportation Authority (RTA). Horgan’s first noted “seeing a failure of the previous government to invest” in transportation solutions, followed by saying that he’s observed with TransLink in Vancouver that large advisory bodies can become “disconnected from the needs of the community and lean to the loudest voice at the table”.
Horgan hopes that BC Transit will “provide public opportunities for people” in Greater Victoria. He favours a non-formal provincial government lead on transportation: “We kinda got it covered here,” he said today, referring to the connections that he and Ministers Fleming, James, Popham and MLA Mitzi Dean have in the community. “We work with the CRD and local mayors and councils to try and deliver services for people,” Horgan said.
One question from the room expressed concern about losing tourism due to the pipeline dispute with Alberta. With reference made to the lunch menu including Alberta short ribs, Horgan did take the opportunity to express positive support for NDP Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, acknowledging it’s her job to represent the economic interests of her province (vis-a-vis the pipeline issue).
“I am not convinced that we are prepared to deal with the consequences of a diluted bitumen spill in the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Gulf Islands and Burrard Inlet,” said Horgan. “We need to find a balance — my responsibility is to the people in this room and the people who are coming here” who are “attracted by the pristine environment”. He reiterated his view that raw petroleum should go to refineries in Canada “to help people” instead of being shipped overseas. He said that the federal 10-year commitment of $1.5 billion on three coasts of the largest coastline on the planet is not a lot of funding should anything go wrong.
The big reveal of the lunchtime speech was Horgan’s commitment to making sure something is achieved with the E&N corridor, saying that trains (or an additional lane on Hwy 1) are probably not the solution to getting more commuters to and to the Victoria area core for employment. He said he is committed to “moving people”, and that he is “committed to doing that in the term of this government”.
Horgan was later asked a question from the floor… would he support formation of a Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) which has been proposed at the CRD level. He talked about getting people “out of cars” into public transit, saying it’s good for the economy to move people efficiently and effectively. Afterward, View Royal Mayor David Screech –- whose municipality is squarely in the one of the heaviest commuter traffic through-zones, said he is still in favour of reactivating trains for the E&N.
Randall Garrison, MP said that Horgan spoke directly to the business community about “issues that they care about”, adding that BC has “enviable economic success”. Indeed, Horgan knew what he was up against but he didn’t pander. Rather, he talked about his government’s plan, made arguments in support of stated policies, and answered questions in which he held his ground.
Horgan wrapped up saying he will back next year, as a way of declaring the stability of his government. The NDP (with Greens) is moving forward with many things that in a few years time will see BC and Canada looking back at a provincial socioeconomic canvas painted with new strokes that are intended to open up new opportunities for business, communities and individuals.
Sunday, May 13 ~ LANGFORD. The 2018 HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens wrapped up earlier today under sunshine and blue skies, before a packed stadium of 6,070 over the two-day tournament this Mother’s Day weekend at Westhills Stadium in Langford, BC.
New Zealand emerged the tournament winner, for their 2nd tournament win on the 5-stop HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series.
Canada placed 5th today with a decisive win in their final match of the day against Ireland, moving them into 4th place in the Series standings with one tournament remaining in Paris, France on June 8-10.
Playing well for Canada were Charity Williams who four times ran the length of the field and Bianca Farella who got Canada ahead in the 2nd game today. Some crucial mistakes were made in this tournament by Canada’s team Canada Ghislaine Landry (returning from a hamstring injury that saw her sit out the games in Japan in April), including two kicks that fell short of the 10-metre line.
“Congratulations to New Zealand on their well-deserved win, and thank you to all of our partners, sponsors and volunteers for their continued support,” said Vansen.
The HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens will return to Langford next year on May 11 & 12, 2019 for the 5th and final year of the current Series cycle. Rugby Canada is actively bidding for another four years of both the men’s and women’s HSBC Canada Sevens tournaments, and hope to receive approval on their bids by Fall 2018.
The 2018 HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens has been a two-day tournament held May 12-13, 2018, hosted at the home of Canadian Rugby at Westhills Stadium in Langford BC, and featured 12 of the world’s top women’s rugby sevens teams on Canadian soil.
The HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens is the fourth stop in a five-stop world tour as part of the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series. Sevens rugby is a fast-paced and shorter version of traditional rugby with only seven players per side. It has built a huge international audience through the success of the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series, which attracts large audiences in markets around the world.
The 2018 HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series kicked off in Dubai on November 30th. Find the entire 5-stop tour at www.worldrugby.org/sevens-series/series-info
Thursday, May 10 ~ WEST SHORE. The Women’s Rugby Sevens team captains did their official group photo on the croquet lawn at Royal Roads University (RRU) this afternoon, May 10. The afternoon was sunny and a big cloud that threatened rain held off from raining on this parade.
These athletes from 12 countries are by default hosted by the Canadian home team that is based out of Langford. Players are staying at Bear Mountain Resort and the Four Points Sheraton, and getting to see the growing bustling town on their way to the various community appearances this week (at schools around Greater Victoria) and practice sessions at Westhills Stadium in Langford.
“Playing at home is unique for us,” says Canada Women’s Rugby Sevens team captain Ghislaine Landry, as the team is now based entirely out of Langford at the new Al Charron Rugby Canada National Training Centre in Langford. “It’s exciting to get out in front of the local fans,” she told media after the photo shoot. “We love to live and train here, it’s fun for us,” she said.
Landry explained that there is a “level of pride” to be operating from an established location, saying the centralization of Rugby Canada in the Victoria area started about six years ago. As Canada’s team captain, Landry ventured to say that when the Women’s Rugby Sevens tournament comes to Langford it’s everyone’s “favourite spot”.
All of the Canadian team players are staying with the other players at the local hotel venues. “It’s part of the tournament experience,” Landry mused.
When asked about what was considered a poor showing for Canada when they played in Japan last month, of course the response was with positive bravado: “This weekend we’ll show that we have trained hard,” said the Canadian team captain.
A bit of tournament analysis by Landry when asked about the competition: “New Zealand and Australia are top teams. And France has a great shot. Spain had a good showing last game.”
The 12 countries that are represented in the Women’s Rugby Sevens circuit are (team captains): Canada (Ghislaine Landry), Australia (Shannon Parry), New Zealand (Sarah Goss), France (Fanny Horta), USA (Nicole Heavirland), Ireland (Lucy Mulhall), Japan (Chiharu Nakamura), Russia (Alena Mikhaltsova), Spain (Barbra Pla), England Abbie Brown), Fiji (Ana Roqica) and Brazil (Raquel Kochhann).
Rain began to fall onto the well-trimmed lawns of the RRU campus outside Hatley Castle in Colwood, just as the media interviews wrapped up.
The 2018 HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens tournament will be held at Westhills Stadium in Langford this Mother’s Day weekend, on Saturday May 12 and Sunday May 13. Tickets are still available for sale online at www.canadasevens.com/womens . Two day tournament passes are available for $49. Single day tickets for Saturday or Sunday are available for $30 or the group rate of $25 (10 or more tickets purchased). Anyone who uses the code MOMPLUS3 can get four general-admission tickets for the price of three.
Wednesday, May 9 ~ LANGFORD. An upcoming accommodation tax levy of 2% will help the City of Langford market their municipality as a tourist destination.
An accommodation tax of 2% is set to come into effect in the City of Langford starting November 1, 2018.
The new Hotel Room Tax Requisition Bylaw No 1778 was handily approved without debate at the municipality’s Special Council Meeting on April 30. First, second and third readings were done April 16.
The 2% levy will be charged on the purchase price of accommodations such as hotel room nights and Air B&B stays.
The additional municipal revenue is intended “to finance marketing of the City of Langford as a tourist destination”.
[As first published in the May 4, 2018 print/PDF issue of West Shore Voice News]
Wednesday, May 9 ~ LANGFORD. So much to do this Mother’s Day weekend in the west shore!
Single-day tickets for the 2018 HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens on May 12-13 at Westhills Stadium in Langford can be purchased through www.canadasevens.com or by calling the Ticket Rocket Box Office at 1-855-842-7575 from 10am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
General Admission tickets are $30, with a reduced-price point of $25 for groups of 10 or more, and $35 for select Reserved seating.
In its fourth year at Westhills Stadium in Langford, the HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens will also offer a unique promotion in honour of Mothers’ Day on Sunday May 13. Fans can buy three GA tickets and get a fourth ticket free when using the code MOMPLUS3 .
Organizers are encouraging fans to include this weekend of sport and celebration in the family plans this coming Mother’s Day.
Monday, May 7 ~ WEST SHORE. The next Canadian Blood Services mobile blood donor clinic in the west shore will be on Victoria Day, Monday May 21, at the usual location: Church of the Advent, 510 Mount View Avenue in Colwood (also serving Langford).
Clinic hours will be 12 noon to 6:45 pm on that holiday Monday. Appointments can be made at www.blood.ca but drop-ins always welcome. Lots of parking.
Last month, the first Grad blood donor drive held at Royal Bay Secondary in Colwood saw 82 students as volunteer donors, producing 58 usable units of blood. Most were first-time donors!
>> This article first published on page 5 in the May 4, 2018 print/PDF issue of West Shore Voice News.
#itsinyoutogive Canadian Blood Services
Saturday, May 5 ~ LANGFORD. Under bright sunny skies on Saturday May 5, a steady stream of drop-in visitors came to the Belmont Residences presentation centre on Division Avenue in Langford, 1 to 3 pm.
Otherwise surrounded by the churned-up ground of a construction zone, the sales centre is a bright modern open space, now open six days a week (Mon-Thurs and Sat-Sun), from 12 noon to 5 pm. A three-person sales team will always be on hand.
Appointments are recommended but drop-ins are welcome, says on-site Project Coordinator Cathy Noel.
The sales centre includes a complete 2-bedroom, 2-bath furnished show suite. The layout of the B1 floorplan brings you directly into the kitchen in view of the inline living/dining room area.
About 80% of the 80 units in the Phase 1 of Belmont Residences include the ‘flex room’ says Belmont Residences Sales Director Peter Gaby. There are three different 2-bedroom+flex floorplan styles, says Marcela Corzon, Director of Development, Ledcor Properties Inc.The flex space (approx 70 sq ft) is likely to be a popular feature, situated immediately upon entry to the suite. In the show suite it’s set up as a small home office but could be used for a variety of purposes such as sewing room, exercise space, or storage.
Each of the Phase 1 of Belmont Residences condo strata units will have their own vehicle parking space. Natural gas and hot water will be included in the strata fees. Heating is by electric baseboard.
Phase 1 pre-sales start around June 9, with occupancy targeted for the first few months of 2020, says Gaby. Phase 2 will offer 90 condo units, followed by an apartment building with 156 rental units, and later on a few townhomes.
Friday, May 4 ~ LANGFORD. For fun and skill-building, about 35 youth from around Greater Victoria took part in a rubgy clinic at Westhills Stadium in Langford on Friday afternoon, May 4. The activity for girls and boys was free. Parents came to watch.
The kids had fun and professional rugby players from Canada Women’s Sevens had a chance to interact with potential new athletes.
And it was a ramp-up to the 2018 HSBC Women’s Sevens Rugby Tournament game coming up May 12-13 at Westhills Stadium by which ticket sales are one way for spectators to donate to KidSport when they purchase tickets online. www.canadasevens.com/womens
The KidSport program helps remove financial barriers to participation in a wide variety of sports, explains KidSport Greater Victoria executive director Jill Shaw. She says that last year two girls were funded by KidSport for their registration in rugby that summer, thanks to donations from ticket-purchasers in May 2017 that amounted to about $500.
“Last year KidSport overall funded a total of $400,000 to pay for sport registrations for 1,400 youth,” said Shaw, out on the Westhills Stadium field on Friday.
Canada Women’s Sevens team captain Ghislane Landry was happy to participate in the youth clinic. “We train so hard, sometimes we forget about the big picture. Activities like today are about growing the grassroots of sport,” Landry told West Shore Voice News. “It’s important to be interacting with the community,” she said before joining a group of eager youth to starting tossing around the rugby ball.
Back on February 27, the new Al Charron Rugby Canada National Training Centre was officially opened on Glen Lake Road behind Westhills Stadium. Landry said at the time that the new home for rugby players would be a boon to the sport. Today she said: “Before, we were spread out across the country. This way we feed off each other and this leads to good things for the program.”
Drills, games and skill-building exercises continued for about an hour in the warmish weather under slightly overcast skies, familiarizing them with the game of rugby. The clinic was open to all interested youth.
The HSBC Canada Women’s Sevens two-day tournament next weekend at Westhills Stadium will feature 12 of the world’s top women’s rubgy seven’s teams. It’s the fourth stop in a five-stop world tour series. Rugby Sevens is a fast-paced, shorter version of traditional rugby with only seven players per side.
The 2018 series kicked off in Dubai at the end of November, followed by Sydney Australia in January 2018, Kitakyushu Japan in April 2018, now Langford next week Sat May 12 and Sun May 13, and finishes up in Paris June 8 to 10. https://www.worldrugby.org/sevens-series-seriesinfo
Thursday, May 3 ~ LANGFORD. TRAFFIC ADVISORY for May 3 & 4. This only matters if you’re in a hurry through Langford.
As first reported yesterday (with map), traffic signals are off at the intersection of Jacklin Rd & Jenkins Ave today Thurs May 3 and tomorrow Fri May 4 (7:30 am to 4:30 pm both days).
Traffic control is on site. At mid-afternoon today, the traffic delay is about 5 minutes for each direction. Pedestrian and cyclist management too.
This is ahead of the May 7 to 11 installation of underground water mains in the area (7:30 am to 4:30 pm), says City of Langford Engineering. As a landmark, this is at the Jacklin-side of the Westshore Town Centre.
Since mid-February, the closure of all Jacklin/Jenkins through-traffic to Sooke Road has seen the new Division Avenue (through the under-construction Belmont subdivision) carry traffic — without a hitch — from Jenkins (Kelly Rd) over to Jacklin at the SD62 administration building location.
Wednesday, May 2 ~ LANGFORD. TRAFFIC ADVISORY for May 3 & 4.
Traffic signals will be off at the intersection of Jacklin Rd & Jenkins Ave on Thurs May 3 and Fri May 4 (7:30 am to 4:30 pm both days), says City of Langford Engineering. Traffic control will be on site. Some traffic delays.
This is ahead of the May 7 to 11 installation of underground water mains in the area (7:30 am to 4:30 pm).
Since mid-February during the closure of all traffic directions at Jacklin/Jenkins, the new Division Avenue that runs through the under-construction Belmont subdivision has carried Jenkins-Jacklin through-traffic from Jenkins over to Jacklin at the SD62 administration building location.
Tuesday, May 1 ~ LANGFORD/COLWOOD – WestShore. At the last minute there has been a change with the Sooke School District (SD62) setup for 2018-2019 bus registration. The online registration system will still open at 9 am on Wednesday, May 2 but routes cannot be chosen by families.
“We have been testing the bus registration system and we realized that it just wasn’t ready in time,” said SD62 Secretary-Treasurer Harold Cull on Monday afternoon, April 30. “Rather than delaying registration, we decided to stick to our deadlines and use a system that we know works,” he told West Shore Voice News. “The timing is unfortunate but as of late last week, we were trying to determine a possible solution that would work for us,” said Cull.
Parents were advised by email on April 30: “Due to unforeseen circumstances, our new online route selection and registration system will not be ready this year. We want to be able to give you a program that will work seamlessly for you, and at this time, we’re not confident our new system will be able to make registration easier for you.”
As in previous years, SD62 will use the School Cash Online system for school bus registration. Registration is free. Register here http://www.sd62.bc.ca/about-sd62/transportation/
What does this mean for registration and bus route selection?
• Registration will open on time
• Parents will not be able to select bus routes.
• Experienced Transportation staff will place your child(ren) on the best routes as per your home address and school.
• If you register by June 1, you will be notified as to which bus routes your child(ren) will be on before the end of the school year.
• Bus passes will be handed out prior to or during the first week of school in September. Bus passes only apply to middle and secondary school students. Attendance will be taken in the elementary grades.
• Drivers will enforce passes during the first week of school in September.
“Many of our buses and routes fill quickly. Please register close to opening so that you get a spot!,” the school district wrote to parents.
Info and Frequently Asked Questions are presented near the bottom of the Transportation page http://www.sd62.bc.ca/about-sd62/transportation/ or contact the Transportation Department via email – firstname.lastname@example.org or call (250) 474-9845.
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