The Nanaimo Port Authority and Snuneymuxw First Nation have announced an agreement that will develop a new “high-speed passenger ferry service” to travel between Nanaimo and downtown Vancouver.
Although the details of the new service are minimal at present, the Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA) says it has entered into a long-term lease agreement with Conqora Capital Partners Inc., which provides access to the Nanaimo Assembly Wharf.
Access to Assembly Wharf will provide space for berths, welcome terminals, parking and connecting areas for passengers.
“After many years of talking about a fast passenger service coming to Nanaimo, it is with great pleasure that Nanaimo Port Authority announces our unique partnership with SFN and Conqora to bring this vital service to Nanaimo,” said Donna Hais, President of Nanaimo Port Authority. “Providing infrastructure that connects Nanaimo with the rest of the world is one of the port’s mandates, and we are delighted to be able to connect people through this mode of transportation.”
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The NPA expects the creation of this new ferry service to bring jobs and future development to Assembly Wharf with the hope that it will become a space that better serves the Nanaimo regional district as well as visitors.
A recognition, cooperation and benefits agreement has also been signed between Snuneymuxw First Nation (SFN) and Conqora, which approves the new passenger ferry in the Snuneymuxw territory.
“Our nation is pleased to announce our tripartite partnership that brings the long-awaited high-speed passenger ferry to our region. We must always be aware that the 1854 Snuneymuxw Treaty protects and preserves Snuneymuxw land and waters and enables trade and commerce in our territory, ”said Snuneymuxw First Nation Chief Mike Wyse in a statement on Thursday. “We are proud to work with Conqora and the NPA on the basis of respect and recognition for the benefit of all and the economy. Congratulations to everyone involved for making this happen, and we look forward to building on this momentum, building a stronger economy and a stronger foundation for respect and cooperation. ”
The agreement between SFN and Conqora aims to promote greater respect for and understanding of Snuneymuxw First Nation’s deep heritage and history.
Although the ferry is described as “high speed”, it is currently unclear how fast the crossing to Vancouver would take or how much it would cost.