June 3 - Local buses recalled over gas-leak

Bike week begins. New Chinatown pop-up. 5-month road closure. Salmon forecast. Sooke traffic troubles.

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Buses, bikes, and automobiles: There are stories on each today, as the top news items all tackle local transit.


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Today’s approx. read time: 5 minutes

🌡️ Weather Forecast

Today: 🌧 15 / 9

Tomorrow: 🌦️ 17 / 9

Day after:  17 / 9


Local buses recalled over gas-leak risk

A Vicinity Classic, seen on the transit corporation's website

Bus service will be reduced for nearly three weeks (June 21), Victoria Transit announced on Sunday night. Part of its fleet has been caught up in a recent safety recall. Replacement parts are set to arrive later this week, BC Transit says, and vehicles will go back into service “as soon as possible.” Multiple Victoria routes have lost some morning service today, per the June 3 alerts.

Problem part could cause “fire and/or an explosion”

Last week Transport Canada recalled 12 versions of Vicinity Motor Corp. compressed natural gas (CNG) buses, citing a compressed-gas hose that is not up to regulation. Gas could leak from the hose and cause fires or explosions, the announcement warned. There was another Vicinity bus recall in Feb., over a mounting structure that could run against the gas tank. 

Fleet is down 34 buses

That’s 11% of the fleet, BC Transit told the Times Colonist. The transit workers’ union president told the Times Colonist that the union has been concerned about the Vicinity buses often needing repairs, but said there have been no local leaks and five buses (of the original 39 recalled) are already repaired.

BC Transit is moving toward electric buses; it has ordered 66, which will begin arriving next year


5-month road closure highlights Sooke traffic troubles

Charters Road closure. Photo: SookeCa / Twitter.

Colwood Crawl, make way for the Sooke Slog. Councillor Al Beddows says that Sooke afternoon traffic is consistently congested, telling CHEK that Highway 14 is at full capacity every day despite recent widening work.

It's a growing problem for a growing municipality, which boosted its population by half between 2001 and 2016 and is projected to grow by another third this decade. It's currently ramping up housing construction and density to keep up.

Charters Road closes for 5 months

Driving delays could become even starker this summer now that Charters Road has shut for essential infrastructure upgrades. It's part of the district’s Transportation Master Plan (TMP), which was created in October 2020 to improve the district as a whole.

Construction started last week, and through traffic is being redirected. Charters is intended to reopen to two lanes of traffic by the end of Oct. This work will add a culvert, structural repairs, and sidewalks and bike lanes.

Mayor Maja Tait said the repairs are “long overdue” but will “significantly enhance safety for our community.” The district said it timed construction for the fisheries window and to protect the ecosystem as much as possible. 

⚠️ Capital Bulletin

Rain through Tuesday, then sun and temperatures above 20C.

Pride month has begun, but most local events aren’t until July

Artists wanted for Little Fernwood Gallery’s 2025 programming. [Info]

Victoria 10 Kamloops 5: HarbourCats go 2-1 to start season.

As much as 40mm of rain could fall in Tofino today.

Driving today? Check the current traffic situation via Google.


GoByBike Week begins today, continuing 30-year cycling celebration

Victoria's bike valet next to City Hall. File photo: Michael John Lo / Capital Daily

Spring GoByBike Week kicks off today, with events, prizes, and challenges all encouraging locals to get around by bike instead of car. The region already has Canada’s highest rate of bike commutes: 1 out of every 19 locals consistently bikes to work, per StatsCan.

GoByBike (previously Bike to Work Week) began in 1995 in Greater Victoria as an effort to convince more provincial government employees to cycle to work. What began with a core group of 500 committed commuter cyclists has since blossomed to 7,000 registered participants last spring.

This year, the 30th anniversary, saw the introduction of a winter week intended to showcase Victoria’s rare all-season bikeability. There will also be a fall edition beginning Sept. 23.

How to participate:

For cyclists who log their rides between now and June 16, there are challenges and prizes—including a trip to Italy and a $4K e-bike. Meanwhile, “Celebration Stations” along popular local bike routes will offer free food and drink, prizes, and bike repair work. See the map of stations here.

⭐️ Capital Picks

🛩 See inside an RCAF Airbus in Comox. [Video]

🚜 “No Mow May” may be over, but there are better things you can do for local ecosystems. [Capital Daily]

🧱 Got a wall? Esquimalt Art Gallery seeks spaces (in Esquimalt and Vic West) for murals.

🎶 Wonderment festival, for ambient & electronic music, announced its evening event lineups.

🤝 Now hiring: Enhanced Executive Support Analyst at ISM.

🗞️ In Other News

Spin-off pop-up restaurant opens today in Chinatown
The popular Ugly Duckling—one of Victoria’s most creative fine-dining experiences—launches the Cold Tea Social Club. The part-time restaurant will have primarily handheld, street-style versions of Duckling dishes. See some of them at Tasting Victoria

Downtown lot, fallow for two decades, could become 22-storey condos
Developers Tri Eagle and Jawl secured approval for a 15-storey office tower at Fisgard and Blanshard, but didn’t build after BC Ferries chose The Atrium for its headquarters. Now, they propose 150+ apartments with “sky gardens” on six storeys. [Citified]

Blue Bridge Theatre suspends 3-play summer season
Due to financial struggles, Blue Bridge vacated its long-term home at The Roxy last December. A new weekend announcement said that it will be planning a new trio of shows at multiple venues and will announce details soon. 

500K sockeye expected as Somass River season begins 
That’s down from a 700K estimate last summer, but a Nuu-chah-nulth expert believes that river bottlenecks, due to drought, may have led to early-season overcounting. This year, heat and low snowpack could cause late-summer problems for salmon. [Ha-Shilth-Sa]

🗓️ Things to do

⚰️ How to talk about death in a comfortable setting, with accurate information, food and drinks and a fun atmosphere. Caffe Fantastico on Kings. Thu. June 6. 7pm. [Info]

📚 Summer Book Sale: St. Mary’s Churchmouse Books celebrates all things green. St. Mary The Virgin Anglican Church. Sat. June 8. 10am-2pm. [Info]

🥳 Cook Street Block Party: The Cook Street Village Business Association and CCGF Events present the 5th annual Village Block Party to celebrate the Cook Street Village and the Fairfield Neighbourhood community. Sun. June 9. 10am-6pm. [Info]

Looking for something to do? Subscribe to This Week In Vic to be emailed a weekly rundown of what’s happening in our region.

👀 In Case You Missed It

Island may beat the heat in BC summer forecast. Plus: Locals lead electric boat project. [Sunday news]

Saturday headlines: Electric fire trucks. Learn about local accessibility initiatives. Navy sailor sentenced. [June 1]

Strawberry Moon Market was yesterday, but you can still check out its tasty vendors this summer. [Tasting Victoria]

Summer flowers bloom at Royal Roads’ Japanese garden. [Photos]

14 baby ducks try to get comfy. [Video]

Pacific FC tied 1-1 vs Cavalry FC on Sat. 

Give deer space, not food, during fawning season. [BC Gov]

That’s it!

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