Restoration Through Oak Bay High School Lands

The restoration of Bowker Creek through Oak Bay High School lands transformed this section of the creek into a healthier riparian environment and an accessible community greenspace. Construction took place between June and September, 2015.

Check out the time-lapse video of the creek re-construction.

Major project features include a winding creek that mimics a more natural water course, native plantings, an accessible pathway, a viewing area and an outdoor classroom.

For project details see:creek-restore1

  1. Final Restoration Design
  2. Illustrative Drawings
  3. Site Map
  4. Photo essay - before restoration (2011)
  5. Photo essay - after restoration (2015-2019)

The District of Oak Bay secured $738,000 in funding for the restoration project, through the Federal Gas Tax Fund.

This project is one of 10 short-term actions for the restoration of the Bowker Creek watershed, as outlined in the Bowker Creek Blueprint. This restoration will improve overall creek health by improving water quality, habitat and flow conveyance. There has already been a decrease in downstream flooding following the restoration, and birds and other wildlife are using the site regularly.

Since the creek runs through the community high school property, there were many opportunities to involve students in all aspects of creek restoration, from channel design and planting to monitoring, and to the creation of curriculum where the naturalized creek has become an outdoor classroom and a community amenity. The project to restore Bowker Creek at its Oak Bay High School reach demonstrates collaboration, partnerships, long-term visionary thinking and development of innovative green rainwater infrastructure. Collaboration, partnerships, timing and external funding are all critical factors that led to the success of this innovative project.

Monteith/Oak Bay Community Native Plant Demonstration Garden

In 2008, BCI was awarded funding from the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, to restore the creekside riparian area near Monteith Street (behind Fireman’s Park) in Oak Bay. As part of the site rehabilitation, this neglected city property has become a community amenity with a demonstration native riparian restoration site and native plant garden – highlighting many edible native plants.

The BCI is pleased to see this project take deep roots in the community with a group of local residents that have adopted the site. With support from Oak Bay Parks these dedicated volunteers actively care for and develop the native garden for the long-term. View photo essay

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“With the recent acceptance by all three municipalities of the Bowker Creek Blueprint: A 100-year action plan to restore the Bowker Creek watershed, moving forward with this project is a true "watershed moment" for the creek and the community. It will be a wonderful example of how a long term coordinated plan to restore function to a degraded watershed can happen, piece by piece, and when opportunities arise, when we work together towards a common vision.”
 Jody Watson, Chair of BCI