Nanaimo undertakes archeological study this week in Departure Bay

NANAIMO – The city will undertake an archaeological study to see if it can do a ‘very rare’ realignment of Departure Bay waterway.

The City of Nanaimo will undertake an archaeological study to see if it can do a ‘very rare’ realignment of Departure Bay waterway.

The City of Nanaimo will undertake an archaeological study to see if it can do a ‘very rare’ realignment of Departure Bay waterway.

The City of Nanaimo will undertake an archaeological study to see if it can do a ‘very rare’ realignment of Departure Bay waterway.

The city has hired Golder Associates to do a $10,000 study this week on whether restoration and realignment of Departure Creek can happen without disturbing any significant archaeological deposits at its property on 1420 Bay Rd.

The work, in the parking lot of Departure Bay Centennial Park, will be overseen by the Snuneymuxw First Nation and the Provincial Archaeology Branch.

Rob Lawrance, city environmental planner, said the study will see if there’s an opportunity to change the creek, a process that is ‘very rare.’

Departure Creek runs behind 7-Eleven, and the city wants to bring it away from the building, create more of a riparian area and create more fish habitat in the stream.

It’s been a neglected stretch of creek for a long time, Lawrance said, and there’s a lot of interest in the community to try and repair that, particularly by the Departure Bay Neighborhood Association.

While the study is being done there will be signs directing people on alternative places to park.