Cordova Bay is a ‘Local Area’ within the District of Saanich. It is bordered by the Pat Bay Highway to the west, the neighboring municipality of Central Saanich to the north, Cordova Bay along the east, and to the south - Broadmead and the Blenkinsop valley.
If you are considering a move to the southern part of Vancouver Island, here are 10 reasons to put Cordova Bay on your ‘short list’ of possibilities.
- Enjoy a quite, unhurried lifestyle
Cordova Bay is partly suburban, partly rural, and plans to remain that way. There are about 2,800 households in Cordova Bay, and the vast majority of them are single family dwellings. Future residential growth possibilities are intentionally limited to infill opportunities (building on vacant lots, or subdivision of existing lots), and multifamily development in what is now the ’Trio Gravel Pits’ on the north west corner of Cordova Bay and Fowler Roads.
There are no plans to allow residential development to encroach on the agricultural rural area lying north of Sayward Road and the Cordova Bay Golf Course. Interest in local sustainable, organic agriculture within Cordova Bay led to the creation of The Haliburton Community Organic Farm Society, a non-profit organization, to save a 9 acre parcel of land from development, and to develop it as a community and educational organic farm.
- The Beach
Cordova Bay developed along the long sandy beach forming its eastern border. In the beginning it was ’cottage country’ for nearby Victoria.
There are several public access points to the beach from Cordova Bay Road, and three area parks: Cordova Bay Park, Parker Park, and Agate Park. The beach is a great place to walk or jog or just relax all year round, and of course it a favorite tanning spot during the summer.
- Village Ambiance
The commercial area of Cordova Bay was originally primarily ‘concentrated’ within the Cordova Bay Shopping Plaza on Cordova Bay Road. The Plaza is quaint, and one day will be redeveloped. The community consensus is that the Plaza should remain a local community shipping facility, not one designed to draw shoppers from other area. Other nearby commercial establishments are well suit to the village-like streetscape of Cordova Bay Road.
- Mattick’s Farm
A mile or so further north on Cordova Bay Road, Mattick’s Farm has become a second commercial area within Cordova Bay, but with a difference. It is an incredibly popular meeting place for locals and tourists alike, with an eclectic collection of boutique shops, a fine food market, a VQA wine store, and a quaint tea room with an excellent menu.
There are many fine golf courses throughout the Capital Regional District, and Cordova Bay has two of them. The ‘Cordova Bay Golf Course’ is a public championship course immediately to the north of Mattick’s Farm. ‘The Ridge’ is a extremely picturesque nine hole course directly across Cordova Bay Road, overlooked by a fine residential development called Sayward Hill.
- The Lochside Trail
- Safe streets
The network of roadways within Cordova Bay has been dictated mainly by the natural. North - south, the only street running the full length of the area is Cordova Bay/Fowler/Sayward Road. Traffic quieting measures are underway to restrict the flow of traffic to two lanes and a safe speed, so it is unlikely to become a convenient shortcut to neighboring local area.
Saanich Commonwealth Place is in nearby Royal Oak, about 5 minutes by car, and offers world class swimming and diving facilities, wave pool, waterslide, the usual assortment of fitness facilities, meeting places, and the Henderson Branch of the Victoria regional Public Library. Mount Doug Park is also next door, for hiking enthusiasts.
- Public Schools
Cordova Bay is served by two excellent elementary schools, one middle school in a new facility, and the well established Claremont High School. According to a report card issued in May 2008 by the Fraser Institute which ranked BC secondary schools, Claremont ranked highest among public secondary schools in the Victoria region, beating out Esquimalt, Lambrick, Mount Doug, Oak Bay, Reynolds, Spectrum, Victoria, Parkland and Stellys.
Chances are you will likely need a car if you choose Cordova Bay - it is a mix of suburban and rural and while served by the Victoria Regional Transit System, your needs and schedules may differ from those of the transit system. That said, Cordova Bay is centrally located on the Saanich Peninsula and so seldom will you travel more than 15 or 20 by car to reach virtually any local destination. That includes the BC Ferries terminal at Schwartz Bay, the Victoria International Airport at Pat Bay, the tea party in Oak Bay, and high tea at the Fairmont Empress on the Inner Harbour. Regional shopping centres are a few minutes by car in neighboring Broadmead and Royal Oak.
The Lochside Trail passes through the length of Cordova Bay. It’s part of a regional network of trails, so you can walk, jog or bike to Sidney to the north, or Sooke to the South west. On weekdays it serves energetic and carbon conscious commuters. On weekends and holidays it’s a favorite place for everyone else. An ice cream at Mattick‘s Farm is a favorite for many trail users.
So that’s it. If it’s a fast paced, urbane lifestyle you seek, Cordova Bay won’t work for you. But if you don’t fall into that category, little Cordova Bay offers much.