The Maritime Museum of B.C. said Tuesday that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has sunk its planned involvement in a proposed Langford development.
In a news release, the museum said it’s withdrawn from the Pacific Maritime Centre (PMC) plans due to the pandemic creating “an economic climate that no longer makes it possible for the museum to proceed.”
The museum and the City of Langford were partnering to create the $87 million PMC, which was was slated to open in the spring of 2024. The proposed development would include a state-of-the-art museum, conference centre and performing arts centre.
“I want to take this opportunity to thank Mayor Young and Langford council for their tremendous support of the Maritime Museum of B.C.,” said Jamie Webb, the museum’s president. “Langford offered the museum land and municipal staff support in the effort to provide the museum with a permanent home. Langford’s innovative and bold approach to this development is greatly appreciated.”
The release said the museum has felt the strain of the pandemic and has had to focus on maintaining its operations. The museum shifted its programming online and has created new digital exhibits since the onset of the pandemic. The Maritime Museum said it believes in and supports Langford’s vision to develop a cultural complex that includes a performing arts theatre.
The museum is looking forward to a post-pandemic tourism boom, the release said, and is seeking opportunities for a new location in downtown Victoria, “ideally on the harbour.”
“The City of Langford looked forward to welcoming the Maritime Museum to Langford, however, we understand and support their decision to seek out a waterfront location,” said Langford Mayor Stew Young. “We wish them all the best with this project moving forward.”
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