Ferry Building restoration
June 1 update: The Ferry Building will be moved to make way for a new foundation and raise the building to protect it from rising flood levels due to the impacts of climate change. The move will be a slow and steady process over Wednesday, June 2 and Thursday, June 3.
The federal and provincial governments are investing in restoring the 108-year-old Ferry Building, a cherished landmark that now operates as a public art gallery near the waterfront in Ambleside.
The restoration work began during the week of May 10 and is scheduled to be complete in spring 2022.
Eight parking spots beside the Ferry Building Gallery will be closed throughout the construction phase of the project to accommodate the construction activity. Traffic and pedestrian flow, as well as other parking disruptions to the north of the gallery on Argyle Avenue, will occur intermittently during construction activity. Please follow the signs and listen to traffic control personnel.
There are additional free public parking spots available in the underground parkade at the Grosvenor Ambleside building. Parking is available for two-hour stays from Monday to Friday between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. The parkade can be accessed at the back of the building, on Bellevue Avenue between 13th Street and 14th Street.
The Ferry Building is a municipally designated heritage site and cannot be altered unless a Heritage Alteration Permit is issued. On February 22, 2021, Council approved the Heritage Alteration Permit to allow restoration of the Ferry Building.
A public comment form was available until February 15. Comments received were summarized and presented to Council for consideration at the February 22 meeting.
The project is co-funded by the District and the federal and provincial governments. The Government of Canada is investing $1,010,360 through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program’s Community, Culture, and Recreation Infrastructure Stream (CCRIS), and the Government of British Columbia is contributing $841,882.
Heritage and cultural facilities are a vital part of Council’s vision to create a complete community that is livable, vibrant, and inclusive. The Ferry Building is one of 14 projects across the Lower Mainland to receive joint federal and provincial funding under the CCRIS.
The restoration will include raising the building in its current location in order to protect it from rising flood levels due to impacts of climate change. Seismic and envelope upgrades and accessibility improvements, including constructing accessible washrooms, also part of the project. The Ferry Building will continue as a community art gallery once the restoration is complete.
The Ferry Building will remain a community art gallery as it has since 1989.
The project is co-funded by the District and the federal and provincial governments. The Government of Canada is investing $1,010,000 through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program’s Community, Culture, and Recreation Infrastructure Stream (CCRIS), and the Government of British Columbia is contributing $840,000.
Council approved a maximum of $1,350,000 in additional funding for the Ferry Building Restoration project. If all grant funds and District funds are spent the total project cost could be as much as $3,200,000.
As far back as 2014 the Ferry Building required repair to the roof and the building envelope and windows, seismic and code upgrades, and flood-proofing of the building. The District submitted a grant application to the Western Economic Diversification Canada—Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program in 2015. The application was not successful.
In 2016, the District submitted a subsequent application to the same program and was again unsuccessful.
In February 2019, the District submitted a funding application to Canada-British Columbia Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program and was successful in receiving $1,852,242 toward the restoration of the Ferry Building.
The building will be raised in its current location in order to protect it from rising flood levels due to impacts of climate change.