Moira Jenkins will take over as chairwoman of the Nanaimo Port Authority board Sept. 1. She succeeds Jeet Manhas

Moira Jenkins will take over as chairwoman of the Nanaimo Port Authority board Sept. 1. She succeeds Jeet Manhas

New chairwoman prioritizes port’s growth

Newly elected Nanaimo Port Authority chairwoman Moira Jenkins says growth of the port is one of her priorities.

Newly elected Nanaimo Port Authority chairwoman Moira Jenkins says growth of the port is one of her priorities.

Jenkins, a board director since October 2014, officially assumes her new role Sept. 1 and one of her goals is to see growth in all of the port’s business arms. The board is looking at different ways it can create more business opportunities for partners and stakeholders on Vancouver Island.

Jenkins said Nanaimo is an industrial port and the authority is focused on building the industrial side of the business – the terminal at Duke Point is key.

“We have a new crane out at Duke Point and we’re thrilled to have it,” said Jenkins. “Our goal there is to build that container ship business here in a very solid manner, so that is underway. It’s more about growth of that project. That’s a fundamental during my term to make sure that that’s working well.”

Jenkins also said she would like to see development of waterfront projects.

“We’re working hard on our marina, hoping to make that a little bit more profitable than it is. It does need some repairs, so it’s a matter of trying to build a business case in there and we’re working on that,” said Jenkins.

The City of Nanaimo, Snuneymuxw First Nation and port authority recently announced an advisory group to select a foot ferry operator from three proponents. Jenkins said that the foot ferry is part of the strategy.

“We have the facility, it’s sitting right there, it’s ready and waiting for a great ferry project to happen … We’ve got all partners involved. Everyone’s very passionate to make this happen and we just need to get a proponent that is ready and willing and able to move forward and make this work for us,” said Jenkins.

She will serve a two-year term as chairwoman.

The port authority also announced that Michelle Corfield, board appointee for the City of Nanaimo, was elected as vice-chairwoman.

reporter@nanaimobulletin.com