The Port Authority wants to hand over the keys to the CPR Steamship building

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The CP steam terminal building is operating at a loss; filling it with tenants was difficult

The Greater Victoria Port Authority is seeking to reduce its losses by handing over to the province control of the CPR Steamship terminal building in the Inner Harbor.

The Authority’s chief executive, Ian Robertson, confirmed that the organization was in talks with the province over the possibility of removing the main lease for the historic building from the Port Authority.

“The conversation around the lease is an ongoing discussion since I’ve been here” seven years ago, said Robertson. “I can say they have picked up in the last few months.”

The urgency of these discussions appears to have increased, with the Port Authority reporting a loss of $ 1.1 million for the past year. The year before, it posted a surplus of $ 3.6 million.

Although filling the building with tenants has been an annual guideline for the authority, it hasn’t been easy, Robertson said, noting that a large space on the top floor has been vacant since Riverside Marine closed. V2V ferry service to Vancouver in 2019.

The building also houses the Bateman Gallery, Steamship Grill and Starbucks.

“We are confident that we have done everything we can to try to ensure that the building is fully occupied, but it has been a challenge and it is something that our board has asked me to do. work, ”said Robertson.

The port authority obtained the right to hold the main lease for the building in 2011.

Last year the building, designed by architects PL James and FM Rattenbury and opened in 1924, cost the Harbor Authority $ 1 million, while it brought in just $ 800,000. The previous year, the costs were the same but it only brought in $ 600,000, according to the harbor authority’s financial statements.

This added more red ink to a ledger that cost $ 9 million last year due to lost revenue from cruise ships.

The authority collects revenue from a cruise passenger fare and sustainability charge, as well as cruise support services.

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