Your Help is Urgently Needed!

Saanich is in the final stages of awarding a Request for Proposal contract to construct a 40 m tower (10 m taller than the existing tower) in the centre of the Churchill Drive summit parking lot. It likely will eliminate up to half of the existing parking, will be a major eyesore dominating the Churchill approach to the summit, dominating the view from the summit trail, let alone from most of Saanich. The tower’s aesthetics in this natural park setting do not appear as a consideration in the RFP.

Saanich has proceeded without informing our Society or the public. The few details we know were obtained by registering as a vendor and reading the RFP. 

The only hope is if you and everyone else write a letter in protest IMMEDIATLY! There is no reason why this replacement tower can’t be located next to the existing tower. 

The original Request for Proposal stated: “The new mast or tower must be as close to the existing tower as possible, no further than 6m or 20ft of the existing tower.”

A Geotechnical engineering report examining the existing tower base stated: “the existing foundation is capable of providing stable, long term support to the monopole structure“ and found no issues with the underlying rock. (However the tower itself is overloaded and undersized.)

An excellent possible new tower location could be just south of the existing tower, on a similar rock base allowing for similar anchors. There would be no tree damage and little if any environmental damage.

Someone (consultant or Saanich?) felt a new access road from the summit parking to the summit must be constructed despite the existing tower base and another similar base being installed on that summit, no road necessary. Of course this road would require loss of trees and severe environmental damage as well as significant additional cost. The tree loss, environmental damage and cost is being used as the rationale for moving the site from the summit to the middle of the parking lot in an update to the RFP. But a road is not needed!

It isn’t clear if there would be additional cost at this summit location without the road since the tower would be 10 m shorter, the cabling is already in place, whereas the parking lot location requires a new hole in the building wall and trenching for the cables and worse, it will likely require blasting, a potential risk to the existing underground building integrity.

The life expectancy of this tower is 50 years. The difference in cost, if any, shrinks when amortized over 50 years. NOTE: Tower replacement money does not come from taxes. Instead tower rental fees have been kept in a reserve fund for the past 32 years and are expected to cover the tower replacement cost.

Our Society accepts the need for tower replacement and understands as soon as the new tower is operational, the existing tower will be removed. We support a location next to the existing tower but have a major objection to the parking lot location.

Please write to

With copies to

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