Welcome to the Gorge Waterway Initiative!

The mission of the GWI is to protect, enhance and restore the health of the Gorge Waterway, Portage Inlet, their watersheds and communities, for the enjoyment and well-being of present and future generations.

Urban Sanctuary Project

buffleheadGWI, ELSI, the Robert Bateman Centre and other regional conservation partners are collaborating to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Migratory Bird Convention Act, enacted by Canada in 1917. The Project goals are to improve stewardship of the upland and marine ecosystems that support birds and other wildlife in our urban centres, and to raise awareness of the 3 sanctuaries in the CRD:

The Urban Sanctuary Project is a collaborative effort of local conservation partners to increase awareness of the three federally-designated Migratory Bird Sanctuaries in the capital region.

Upcoming Events

Speakers Series:

"From Brant to BiodiverCity - The Resurrection of Victoria Harbour Bird Sanctuary - the oldest MBS in Pacific Canada"
Presented by: Jacques Sirois, naturalist and birding expert
7pm Thursday December 8, 2016
Robert Bateman Centre, 470 Belleville St
Sign up
Read more >>

Swimming in the Gorge

Island Health monitors swimming beaches during the summer to ensure safety for swimmers. Island Health also monitors the south island beaches, including swimming beaches in the Gorge Waterway.

For more information call: 250.519.3401

Gorge Waterway Nature House

Visit the GWI display and learn more about the Gorge Waterway and its ecosystems:
In Esquimalt Gorge Park
Email for opening hours
Or call World Fisheries Trust: 250.380.7585

Featured Projects

Friends of Victoria Harbour Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Check out the Facebook site for this new group that is working to raise awareness of all the amazing birds and wildlife in the midst of this busy urban waterway.

Point Ellice Shoreline Restoration: 2007 - 2014

GWI and community volunteers spent 1000s of hours restoring the woodland shoreline at Point Ellice House. Read more about the Point Ellice Shoreline Restoration.
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Craigflower Bridge Interpretive Signs - 2014

The GWI worked with the Esquimalt and Songhees Nations, and staff from View Royal and Saanich to design and install interpretive signs on the new Craigflower Bridge. Read more >>

What is the GWI?

The Gorge Waterway Initiative is a collaborative, community-driven group of organizations concerned with protecting and enhancing the natural and cultural features of the Gorge Waterway, Portage Inlet and the surrounding watersheds.

GWI meeting schedule 2017

Steering committee meetings are held at the Victoria Canoe & Kayak Club, 355 Gorge Rd West, from 7 - 9:30pm. Meetings are held on the 3rd Wednesday of every other month:

  • January 18
  • March 15
  • May 17
  • July 19
  • September 20
  • November 15