Parking in downtown Lake Cowichan may not be an issue in the winter but growing summertime demand has prompted the town to investigate the cost of implementing pay parking at Saywell Park.

Parking in downtown Lake Cowichan may not be an issue in the winter but growing summertime demand has prompted the town to investigate the cost of implementing pay parking at Saywell Park.

Council contemplates pay parking for Saywell

The Town of Lake Cowichan’s economic and sustainable development committee has asked town staff to investigate the potential costs

The Town of Lake Cowichan’s economic and sustainable development committee has asked town staff to investigate the potential costs associated with pay parking or other measures to control the length of time vehicles can use Saywell Park’s parking lot.

“In the summertime at Saywell Park and the downtown area…people are going tubing for three, four hours, they’re parking their cars and tying up all the parking spots and people can’t get into the businesses,” mayor Ross Forrest told the committee.

“I don’t want to see Lake Cowichan become a town where you have to pay for parking, but I think we have to for long-term parking, anything over two hours or something like that. There’s got to be a cost for it.”

Forrest expressed an interest in speaking with other communities of comparable size who have instituted parking controls.

“It doesn’t for us necessarily have to be all year,” he added.

Jim Humphrey, president of the Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce, echoed the mayor’s comments about a need for some parking policy change at Saywell Park.

“There are other businesses there that rely on people parking,” he said. “I know the chamber of commerce, we welcome working with the town to find a solution that’s going to benefit everybody.”

Humphrey said he doesn’t think parking is a big issue for businesses in other parts of the town. Like Forrest, he pointed to the summer influx of people going tubing on the Cowichan River as the main source of parking challenges at Saywell Park.

“I think the tubing companies, rather than just come in and open a door with tubes, they need to take some responsibly of getting their customers to the river they rely on without taking all the parking of everybody else,” he said.

Aaron Frisby is the owner/operator of the Tube Shack, one of the local tubing businesses whose customers use Saywell Park for parking, and during his five years with the company has only received one complaint from a local business regarding the impact tubers have on area parking.

“To be honest I think most of the businesses around there really do benefit from the tubing crowd,” he said.

He said the town has not been contact with him about Saywell Park parking issues.

“I think it’s a good idea for the city to look for ways to benefit off the tubers. How the town can actually financially benefit from tubers coming to town,” he said, with regards to the town’s interest in researching new parking models for that area.

“I wouldn’t like to see tubers getting scared off because of parking,” he added.

Frisby estimated that his business accounts for approximately a third of tubers coming to Lake Cowichan. The Tube Shack operates from July to September.

Just Posted

Mariah Segee (centre) was named 2021 Lady of the Lake last Saturday, with Megan Rowbottom (left) as first princess, and Macey Anderson (right) as second princess. (Submitted)
Lady of the Lake returns to Lake Cowichan

Mariah Segee takes the crown in first pageant since 2018

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Bay man’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

Threads N Tails owner Lee-Ann Burke’s pet clothing has been featured on the cover of the June/July issue of Pet Connection Magazine. (Submitted)
Lake Cowichan business featured on magazine cover

Lee-Ann Burke hopes the extra publicity will increase sales

North Cowichan’s senior environment specialist Dr. Dave Preikshot (pictured) said there’s a wide spectrum of views on carbon credits. (File photo)
Carbon credits expected to be part of discussions around forest reserve

North Cowichan acknowledges wide range of views on issue

Blue Moon Marquee from Duncan will be featured at the 2021 TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival on June 28. (Submitted)
Blue Moon Marquee to play Vancouver Jazz Festival

What’s coming up in the A&E scene

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Children’s shoes and flowers are shown after being placed outside the Ontario legislature in Toronto on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ontario commits $10 million to investigate burial sites at residential schools

Truth and Reconciliation Commission identified 12 locations of unmarked burial sites in Ontario

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden is pictured with a draft horse. (Canadian Horse Defence Coalition)
Jann Arden backs petition to stop ‘appalling’ live horse export, slaughter

June 14 is the International Day to End Live Export of Animals

Two hundred and fifteen lights are placed on the lawn outside the Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., Saturday, June, 13, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former Kamloops Indian Residential School earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Days after Kamloops remains discovery, Tk’emlups families gather to unite, move ahead

‘We have to work together because this is going to be setting a precedent for the rest of the country’

In this Saturday, May 29, 2021, file photo, people crowd the Santa Monica Pier in Santa Monica, Calif. California, the first state in America to put in place a coronavirus lockdown, is now turning a page on the pandemic. Most of California’s coronavirus restrictions will disappear Tuesday, June 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
With COVID tamed, it’s a ‘grand reopening’ in California

No more state rules on social distancing, no more limits on capacity, no more mandatory masks

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Gabriola Island artist Sheila Norgate is promoting the Digital Innovation Group’s art impact survey. (File photo)
Vancouver Island artists get behind regional arts impact study

Artists urged to use their stature to help put arts and culture super-region on the map

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Most Read