Referendum Planned for Southern Gulf Islands Transportation Service

Jun 13, 2022

Victoria, BC– On June 8, 2022, the Capital Regional District (CRD) Board received the Southern Gulf Islands Transportation Integration Plan, which presents a business case for a new transportation service for the Southern Gulf Islands Electoral Area. After consideration of the plan’s recommendations, the CRD Board gave three readings to Bylaw 4485, an important step towards the establishment of an integrated Southern Gulf Islands (SGI) Transportation Service.

The new service will raise a maximum requisition of $675 000 or $14.10 per $100,000 of assessed property value ($0.1414 per $1,000). The Capital Regional District will include a referendum question on the ballot of General Election in October 2022, to ask if voters support the creation of a new transportation service for the Electoral Area. Voter assent is required to authorize creation of the new service. 

“Gulf Islanders have done incredible work to date addressing transportation needs through local volunteer-supported non-profit groups” says Paul Brent, Alternate Director of the Southern Gulf Islands Electoral Area. “Now these community organizations need reliable and predictable support to meet the islands’ needs for sustainable options that reduce our car dependency, give vulnerable islanders like seniors and kids ways to travel safely and independently, and connect our communities.”

A transportation service for the islands would enable the CRD to fund public transportation options, support the development of safe walking and cycling routes, and coordinate partnerships for more efficient travel between the islands. An integrated transportation system would change the economic and social geography and enable shared services and increased connections throughout the islands.

This move comes after a year-long community engagement process that involved a high level of public participation. Overall, the theme heard repeatedly from the public and stakeholders was that there was a need to improve transportation options on the Southern Gulf Islands, particularly due a lack of safety for users of the hilly, winding and narrow road network. Improved transportation options would:

  • Better connect major origins and destinations on the islands.
  • Provide alternatives to single occupancy vehicles
  • Reduce car dependency
  • Provide seniors and low-income populations better travel options.
  • Better enable kids the ability to travel safely and independently.
  • Be more sustainable and better stewards for the environment.

The primary objective of an SGI transportation service would be to provide financial and coordination support to the trail organizations and community bus societies that work on the islands.  The CRD service would support transportation by filling gaps in the existing local transportation framework: grants to non-profit transportation providers, holding tenure as required by the Ministry of Transportation in the Road Right of Way, acting as the sponsoring local government when required for transportation infrastructure investment and funding applications to higher levels of government, and providing coordination for a transportation network that is integrated across the different modes and different islands of the SGI EA. The SGI transportation service and funding priorities would be guided by an SGI Transportation Commission made up of local representatives from each island.

For more information and to view the plans, please visit  or contact Justine Starke, Manager, SGI Service Delivery (CRD) at 250.360.3275.


The Southern Gulf Islands of Galiano, Mayne, North and South Pender Islands, Saturna, and associated islands make up an unincorporated rural Electoral Area under the jurisdiction of the Capital Regional District (CRD).  

Proud to be recognized as one of BC’s Top Employers and Canada’s Greenest Employers, the CRD delivers regional, sub-regional and local services to 13 municipalities and three electoral areas on southern Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. Governed by a 24-member Board of Directors, the CRD works collaboratively with First Nations and all levels of government to enable sustainable growth, foster community well-being, and develop cost-effective infrastructure while continuing to provide core services to residents throughout the region. Visit us online at


For media inquiries, please contact:
Andy Orr, Senior Manager
CRD Corporate Communications
Tel: 250.360.3229
Cell: 250.216.5492