Please visit our blog post “The Toad And The Bear” for the back-story to this photo series. Today’s post is a long time coming, and it’s a new series we’re so very excited to bring you! This photographic series details and documents the current state of affairs at the Bear Mountain development project in Victoria BC. This project is absolutely full of intrigue and currently sits in an unfinished state. Court cases are ongoing and no one knows the outcome. The grand vision was to create a special high-end facility that provided both very nice living for local residents, and spas and country clubs for the rich and famous to come visit. This vision sits unfinished and is a source of displeasure for many local folks in the greater Victoria area.
I am sure everyone has heard someone say “Yeh, and if you believe that, I have a bridge for sale.” Today’s blog post begins our photographic journey at the bottom of Bear Mountain, where an intended overpass was originally designed to alleviate some of the massive traffic problems we are encountering on the lower island due to ongoing urban development. We truly do have a bridge for sale.
This panoramic image tells the entire story in one quick look. A bright red For Sale sign adorns our countryside as you make your way out-of-town, a constant reminder to commuters of the developments plans that have yet to be realized.
Millions of dollars have been spent bringing the bridge to this point. A bright red KEEP OUT sign greets you as your eye wanders up what one day might be an exit ramp. Gravel remains unfinished and the entire bridge is currently totally impassable by most cars. The city of Langford has paid for their portion of this project, the developer has allegedly not. For us local taxpayers, we’re left with a useless and ugly bridge that only provides value to photographers looking to express ultimate irony in a picture form.
Immediately to the right of the overpass sits this grove of Garry Oak trees, a protected and rare tree here on Vancouver Island. If we had a Garry Oak tree on our land and cut it down, I understand we’d be in plenty of trouble with the local bylaw enforcement folks. This grove has a nice, shiny FOR SALE sign in front of it. We assume the developers wanted to own this land to protect this important ecosystem on our island; why else would they buy it?
As we stand across the highway looking at the overall scene, we can clearly see Canada’s beautiful rolling mountains and forests… littered with incomplete gravel stretches of roads and unfinished landscaping.
It’s bad enough that we’re constantly reminded of the failure of the project as we crawl along underneath this bridge during rush-hour at a blazing 5-10 mph. Just on the other side of the cement barricades lie a pile of garbage… if someone was to try to take those tires to a recycler could we raise enough money to finish the bridge? I guess my second question would be does someone think “Huh, I’ve got these old worn out tires in the back of my truck here, I think I’ll pull over and toss them onto the side of the road“? I just don’t get this type of disregard for our environment. This is quite obviously the work of more than one person.
There should be a sign here, “Welcome to Bizzaroland“. As you wander up one of the gravel exit ramps to the top of the bridge, you are greeted with a finished, paved, and fully operational bridge. Too bad it’s totally inaccessible!! Huge piles of gravel sit in the distance, waiting for a grader to finally come and try to make some sense of the madness left behind here. It may never happen.
This is just our very first installment of our new series, please do stay tuned. Tomorrow we begin our journey up the other side of the mountain where the Village is situated. As we make our way up, the images that present themselves to us become stranger and stranger….
Please feel free to leave us any comments you may have, we sure do love to hear from all our visitors!! Thanks for your visit today, and we hope you’ve enjoyed this inaugural installment of our latest series.