Oak Bay Lodge site offers ‘clean slate’ opportunity

Regional hospital district to take ownership once current facility closes

Oak Bay Mayor Nils Jensen sees an opportunity and clean slate for the community to build its own vision when the Capital Regional Hospital District takes ownership of Oak Bay Lodge

Oak Bay Mayor Nils Jensen sees an opportunity and clean slate for the community to build its own vision when the Capital Regional Hospital District takes ownership of Oak Bay Lodge

The Capital Regional Hospital District will own Oak Bay Lodge from Island Health after the facility closes, anticipated in 2019.

The closure would coincide with the opening of Island Health’s new 320-bed facility Summit at Quadra Village on the former Blanshard Elementary School playing field on Hillside Avenue.

“The public process will probably not occur for some time,” said Oak Bay Mayor Nils Jensen. “The property will be used as a lodge to 2019 or 2020, at which time decisions will be made.”

The Capital Regional District plans to work with Oak Bay council on ideas and proposals for the site over the coming years.

The CRHD has identified an interest in using the site for the benefit of the community. The agreement includes a covenant that the land be used for the public good.

“(Public good) is a vague and wide term but it is one that a series of public engagement sessions will define,” Jensen said.

Built in 1972 as a private retirement residence for senior citizens, the 14,300-square-metre, multi-storey brick and concrete building comprises two patient wings with a central connecting wing.

In the early 1980s the building was converted to a long-term care facility and currently provides 235 residential care beds.

Not having perused the reports himself, Jensen says he’s been advised it would be “unwise to repurpose” the building.

“One thing seems fairly certain, the building will have to come down,” he said. “In essence that means we will start with a clean slate to look at a wide variety of opportunities.”

A suggestion he’s heard repeatedly is a seniors’ wellness centre, perhaps incorporating affordable seniors housing. The current facility does provide some seniors day activities and it would be in keeping with recent advice of provincial seniors advocate Isobel Mackenzie.

“The evidence is quite clear aging in place is the best thing for seniors’ physical and emotional health,” Jensen said. “Creating the vision is completely open at this point.”

He notes the location is near services and amenities such as transit, groceries and the recreation centre that would provide high quality of life for seniors. “It would be ideal, but I think we all want to hear from the community about other ideal uses,” he said. “This is an opportunity to create a model for the rest of British Columbia.”



Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Ron MacDonnell leans over the railing on Beacon Wharf Tuesday afternoon. The Town of City is currently looking into the future of the aging structure. It could make way for a concrete pontoon once part of the floating bridge over Hood Canal in Washington State. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Sidney explores public-private partnership for iconic Beacon Wharf

Wharf committee recommends town invite pontoon company to submit proposal

Victoria police are seeking home surveillance video and witnesses following a prowling incident in Esquimalt Jan. 20. (Black Press Media file photo)
Esquimalt prowler removes air conditioner, peers into person’s home

VicPD is seeking video footage, witnesses following Jan. 20 incident

Francina Mettes and Thomas Schouten with the 200-page document they submitted in December of 2018. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
Dutch 94-year-old in Saanich earns permanent Canadian residency

Couple of 45 years to stay together in Cadboro Bay

Maj.-Gen. Dany Fortin, vice-president of logistics and operations at the Public Health Agency of Canada, speaks at a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
B.C. records 500 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, 14 deaths

Outbreak at Surrey Pretrial jail, two more in health care

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding Covid-19 for the province of British Columbia in Victoria, B.C, Monday, December 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Premier, health officials to discuss next steps in COVID immunization plan

Nearly 31,000 doses of vaccine the province expected by Jan. 29 could be curtailed due to production issues

Homalco First Nation said that it will intervene in the judicial review sought by aquaculture companies with regards to federal decision to phase out 19 Discovery Island fish farms by 2022. In this picture from Sept. 24, a demonstrator wears representations of sea lice outside the Fisheries and Oceans Canada offices in downtown Vancouver.(Quinn Bender photo)
Chief says push for fish farm judicial review a challenge to reconciliation, Aboriginal Rights

Homalco First Nation chief reacts to Mowi and Cermaq intervention in Discovery Island decision

Vancouver Canucks’ Travis Hamonic grabs Montreal Canadiens’ Josh Anderson by the face during first period NHL action in Vancouver, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horvat scores winner as Canucks dump Habs 6-5 in shootout thriller

Vancouver and Montreal clash again Thursday night

Rod Bitten of Union Bay won $500,000 in the Lotto Max draw on Jan. 15. Photo supplied
Vancouver Island electrician gets shocking surprise with $500K Extra win

Rod Bitten has been hard at work with home renovations, which is… Continue reading

Eighteen-year-old Aidan Webber died in a marine accident in 2019. He was a Canadian Junior BMX champion from Nanaimo. (Submitted)
Inadequate safety training a factor in teen BMX star’s workplace death in 2019

Aidan Webber was crushed by a barge at a fish farm near Port Hardy

Most Read