The Sunshine Coast Regional District oversees a number of common functions for the whole coast. Originally established to oversee an area that was largely rural, it has faced increasing challenges as its affordability and proximity to Vancouver drew the attention of developers. Many areas have been subdivided into parcels of a half-acre or less, in neighbourhoods that are now rural residential rather than rural acreages (especially in those areas closest to Gibsons and Sechelt.) Subdivision is handled through the provincial Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.
As business licenses are not required in the SCRD, many home-based businesses incubate here before growth prompts a relocation to one of the municipal hubs.
|Form||Board of Directors|
|Number of Elected Officials||8|
|Next election date||October 20, 2018|
|Chief Administrative Officer||Janette Loveys|
|Total Population (per 2016 Census)||28,619|
|Number of Employees||225|
|Official Community Plan and Land Use||Each Rural Area has its own OCP(s); see details below|
|Zoning||Click here to access SCRD Property Viewer for zoning designations|
|Water||Mainly sourced from SCRD Chapman/Gray watershed system; some rural areas are served by other watersheds or aquifers, or from individual wells on private property|
|Population (per 2016 Census)||2,624|
|Land area||1,901.61 sq. km.|
|Population density||1.4 persons / sq. km.|
|Average age||55.2 yrs|
|SCRD Representative||Frank Mauro|
|Area school(s)||Madeira Park Elementary, Pender Harbour Secondary|
|Official Community Plan||Click here to download PDF: Area A OCP (includes Land Use and Development Permit Areas)|
|Special Events and Attractions||Pender Harbour May Day (May), Egmont Day, Blues Festival (June), Chamber Music Festival (August), Mushroom Festival (October); Pender Harbour Aquatic & Fitness Centre, Iris Griffith Interpretive (Ecology) Centre, Pender Harbour Golf Course, Egmont Heritage Centre, Skookumchuck Rapids, Chatterbox Falls. See: Festivals & Events|
Pender Harbour is a ‘Resort Area’ seamed with fjords, bays, islets, lakes and rivers. Residential development tends to cluster close to the waterfront (which, because of all those fjords and bays, is plentiful).
Most area retail, health care providers and other services are centred in the Madeira Park village area, as are three of the area’s half-dozen resorts. Pender Harbour’s resorts are open only during the peak season for summer visitors, from mid-May to mid-October. Madeira Park is a “working harbour” with moorage for commercial and sports fishing vessels at the government and private residential docks, and area marinas. Kleindale is a ‘crossroads’ community at the junction of Highway 101 and Garden Bay Road, with some retail and light industrial businesses surrounded by farm acreage. Garden Bay is a resort area 6km from Highway 101 on the waterfront at Garden Bay, Hospital Bay and Irvine’s Landing. Egmont features a working harbour 6km from Highway 101 at the northern end of Porpoise Bay, near the Skookumchuck (Sechelt) Rapids with its ‘standing wave’ – a natural wonder beloved by kayakers and a challenge to boaters. Three Egmont resorts partner with area tour operators to run visitors to the rapids, or up Princess Louisa Inlet to view Chatterbox Falls, indigenous cliff paintings, and other wilderness sites of interest.
|Population (per 2016 Census)||2,726|
|Land area||1,753 sq. km.|
|Population density||2.1 persons / sq. km.|
|Average age||49.1 yrs|
|SCRD Representative||Gary Nohr|
|Area school(s)||Halfmoon Bay Elementary|
|Commercial hub(s)||Welcome Woods, Halfmoon Bay Village|
|Official Community Plan||Click here to download PDF: Area B OCP (includes Land Use and Development Permit Areas)|
|Special Events and Attractions||Country Fair (July), Apple Festival (October) See: Festivals & Events|
North of Sechelt, the Regional District of Halfmoon Bay is an interesting mix of luxury waterfront homes, country estates, family-oriented subdivisions, and a few repurposed former summer cabins. This is an area of strong growth, with waterfront properties in high demand for building (or rebuilding). While there are a few farmgate operations, the acreages are small and the crops are specialized. Halfmoon Bay is home to the internationally-recognized Rockwater Resort, and private marinas in the Smugglers Cove area attracts boaters to its safe harbour.
Halfmoon Bay has three very small commercial hubs: Welcome Woods (Fawn Road), Halfmoon Bay village (Mintie Road), and Smuggler Cove. Welcome Woods hub has a general store with deli and liquor sales, a plant nursery, and various nearby small home-based businesses. Halfmoon Bay village is walking distance to the Government Wharf, also served by a general store with liquor sales, and a coffee shop/deli/bakery. Smuggler Cove is a resort area, with private marinas and a seasonally-operated restaurant nearby. The clear waters off the Halfmoon Bay coastline are popular with scuba divers, kayakers and boaters.
|Population (per 2016 Census)||3,421|
|Land area||143.64 sq. km.|
|Population density||23.8 persons / sq. km.|
|Average age||46.1 yrs|
|SCRD Representative||Mark Lebbell|
|Area school(s)||Roberts Creek Elementary|
|Official Community Plan||Click here to download PDF: Area D OCP (includes Land Use and Development Permit Areas)|
|Commercial hub(s)||Roberts Creek Village (“Heart of the Creek”)|
|Special Events & Attractions||Community Mandala Paint-in (July), Creek Daze (August); year-round weekly Farmgate Market features local produce; Cliff Gilker Park waterfall; Sunshine Coast Golf & Country Club
See: Festivals & Events
Roberts Creek has a reputation for eccentricity and character. The charming village business hub features an eclectic mix of shops, services, and restaurants, including the landmark Gumboot Café. Just past the Roberts Creek General Store, on the approach to the jetty and beach, is a community Mandala. The brainchild of local resident Robert Marion, the intricate design is renewed each July through a co-operative communal paint-in by local residents following Marion’s fresh patterns. Its completion is celebrated with an annual Mayan Day Out of Time festival on July 24.
The internationally-renowned Inside Passage School of Woodworking draws students from around the world to design and produce elegant one-of-a-kind furnishings. Roberts Creek hosts the Sunshine Coast’s only year-round Farm Market, each Wednesday from 3 – 6 p.m. at Roberts Creek Hall and the adjacent Masonic Hall, corner of Roberts Creek Road and Highway 101. The community also hosts Slow Sundays market/entertainment throughout the summer in the village area.
Housing ranges from repurposed former summer cabins to a model co-housing community, to large waterfront properties and country estates. With many large acreages and working farms, Roberts Creek has a strong equestrian culture as well. The annual Roberts Creek Hunt (in which no fox is harmed, or even present) opens the Lower Mainland hunt season each October. Regular competitions in dressage and riding are held at the Equestrian Grounds on B&K Road.
|Population (per 2016 Census)||3,664|
|Land area||21.60 sq. km.|
|Population density||169.6 persons / sq. km.|
|Average age||45.5 yrs|
|SCRD Representative||Lorne Lewis|
|Area school(s)||Cedar Grove Elementary School|
|Official Community Plan||Click here to download PDF: Area E OCP (includes Land Use and Development Permit Areas)|
|Zoning Maps||Click here to download PDF: Zoning map|
|Special Events & Attractions||Gibsons Fall Fair (October) See: Festivals & Events|
The smallest and most densely populated of the SCRD’s rural areas, Elphinstone is connected to Gibsons by walking, cycling and riding paths as well as roads. Housing options are diverse, with conventional subdivisions, mixed neighbourhoods, farms, waterfront homes and country estates. Elphinstone has some of the most affordable housing prices on the Sunshine Coast and the most young families.
As it is adjacent to Gibsons with all its amenities, Area E has no commercial hub of its own. There are a number of home-based businesses, including light industrial operations. There are a number of small commercial and hobby farms thriving in Area E.
Cedar Grove Elementary School’s adjacent tennis/basketball courts, accessible playground, playing fields, trails and community meeting space at Frank West Hall provide most of the community’s recreation facilities.
|Population (per 2016 Census)||2,043|
|Land area||381.07 sq. km.|
|Population density||5.4 persons / sq. km.|
|Average age||49.5 yrs|
|SCRD Representative||Ian Winn|
|Area school(s)||Langdale Elementary|
|Official Community Plan||Click here to download PDF: Area F OCP Hillside OCP|
|Commercial hub(s)||None; industrial hubs at Twin Creeks, Hillside, Port Mellon, Stewart Road at North Road|
|Special Events and Attractions||Langdale School Fair (June); Shirley Macey Park/Soames Hill lookout, offleash dog park, tots’ waterpark play area, YMCA Camp Elphinstone (open year-round) See: Festivals & Events|
West Howe Sound is set against a stunning backdrop of ocean and mountain, and includes Keats and Gambier Islands. The area has many public beaches, public and private docks and waterfront properties. The neighbourhoods of Port Mellon, Williamson’s Landing, Langdale, Granthams and Hopkins are connected to Gibsons by the scenic Port Mellon Highway and either Marine Drive or the Bypass to Upper Gibsons. West Howe Sound features a number of industrial parks along the Port Mellon Highway, is rich in agricultural land, and is home to several modern upscale residential developments. The Coast’s first stop on the BC Ale Trail – the award-winning Persephone’s Beer Farm – is readily accessible at the junction of Stewart and North Roads, near the top of the bypass to the BC Ferry Terminal.
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