Royal Bay Beachpark opens with sizeable crowd

Following on the heels of the Rio Olympics, the beach volleyball court at the newly opened Royal Bay Beachpark has proven popular with visitors like these two sisters. The park, accessible off Metchosin Road in Colwood, is open dawn till dusk on weekends until it is fully completed. Visitors can access the beachfrom the park and future amenities include a children’s playground and a kayak/canoe boat launch area. — Image Credit: Joel Tansey/News Gazette Staff

Joel Tansey | Goldstream News Gazette
September 15, 2016

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Royal Bay has officially lifted the curtain on its Beachpark, giving the public access to a pristine portion of coastal land for the first time in decades.

The developers, who have billed this as a public park on private land, held a grand opening celebration last weekend featuring food trucks, kayaking, beach volleyball and face painting among other activities.

The land was previously the home of a prolific quarry and gravel extraction site. Saturday’s event was well attended and far exceeded organizers’ expectations.

“We were thrilled. There was a ton of community turnout and everybody seemed very excited that the waterfront was now able to be accessed by the public,” said Cortney Fraser, Royal Bay’s manager of marketing and communications.

“They were really appreciative … I think that a lot of the residents and community members were really excited that we had chosen to do (this),” she added.

The park will now be open from dawn to dusk on weekends amid ongoing construction. Crews are hoping to have it completed by the end of the fall.

Fraser said that Royal Bay will plan for another opening celebration in the spring, once the park has been fully completed, with this past Saturday’s event serving as more of a preview of what is to come.

“We still have a kids playground to install, competition volleyball nets that will be installed, and some work needs to be done on the lower level where we’ll have a paddlecraft drop-off … there’s going to be a lot more greenery,” she said.