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Butchart Gardens


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#101 Brantastic

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Posted 01 March 2021 - 09:50 PM

The Municipality of Central Saanich is quite aware of the non-stop vehicle and pedestrian activity on Benvenuto Ave, especially during the long tourist season.

Benvenuto is quite narrow, and walking on it is somewhat precarious what with no sidewalks of any kind to be found.

 

Additionally, and alluded to in the article, with over 300 workers, most of the Gardens employees arrive at work via bus, or after being dropped off on Wallace. 

It's only managers and the most senior employees that benefit from on-site parking ... the guy who serves you your hot dog has to walk down Benvenuto (along with a couple of hundred other employees) ... thus the new path.

Actually, in peak season (pre-pandemic) it's around 600 workers. 300 workers is closer to winter staffing numbers, and maybe current Covid numbers. I worked at The Butchart Gardens for 3.5 years until early last year.

The bus doesn't go down the hill to Butchart Gardens outside of BG's operating hours. So, if you work an opening or closing shift and you take transit to work, you need to walk up and down that hill, which people drive very quickly along despite the lower speed limit. Also, plenty of tourists take transit from Downtown, and if they leave right when The Gardens close, they're stuck walking up the hill too. I used to catch the bus back from the top of the hill after they closed and there'd be quite a few tourists catching that bus.

I also sometimes biked to The Gardens and worked with several others who biked to work. I'd say 40-50% of the people who work there live in Brentwood Bay and lots of them walked to work along Benvenuto. There are a ton of students from Stelly's that work there too. Staff parking is constrained in the summer time, and there'd often be overflow parking an extra 5 minute walk away. They have "ride reduction" incentives there to encourage active transportation to work.

So I think this is very worthwhile!


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#102 Brantastic

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Posted 02 March 2021 - 12:02 AM

Also heavily used by locals in Brentwood with 12 month passes. Some walk their dogs there everyday.


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#103 Spy Black

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Posted 02 March 2021 - 08:47 AM

Sorry but staff have free parking on-site at Butchart and the bus goes right to the front gate. Nobody is walking from Wallace unless they choose to.

I stand by what I wrote.

You're free to disagree :)


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#104 spanky123

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Posted 02 March 2021 - 08:51 AM

I stand by what I wrote.

You're free to disagree :)

 

I can only go by my experience with family and friends who have worked at BG. Never had an issue with staff parking or the bus. Never saw staff having to walk from Wallace down to get to work. Not saying it never happened, just never saw it.



#105 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 06:10 AM

Central Saanich is seeking public input on its first active transportation plan, which includes infrastructure projects as well as programs to encourage walking, cycling and transit.

The draft plan assigns top priority to filling gaps in the sidewalk, trail and cycling networks and improving road safety, ­particularly in more densely populated areas like Brentwood and Saanichton. It proposes new multi-use pathways, sidewalks, bike lanes and bike parking, and upgrades to crosswalks with flashing lights.

https://www.timescol...plan-1.24291018



#106 On the Level

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Posted 02 May 2021 - 12:18 PM

Went to Butcharts yesterday and it was spectacular.  Saw a hummingbird I hadn't seen before.  Much larger than normal and it had a purple head.  Anyways, if you like the gardens, now is a good time to go.


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#107 todd

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Posted 02 May 2021 - 06:33 PM

How were the crowds?

#108 On the Level

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Posted 02 May 2021 - 07:18 PM

How were the crowds?

 

The place was empty for a Saturday.....


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#109 todd

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 11:56 AM

It was delightful:
DFD91D03-3342-4D1A-96F8-3F184C970413.jpeg

4CB70D64-4C39-4B26-B98B-CA5CECCDD8FA.jpeg

Edited by todd, 04 May 2021 - 11:57 AM.

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#110 todd

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 05:56 PM

AB218C47-25F2-4F6F-A1BC-6682601FEE11.jpeg
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#111 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 15 January 2022 - 12:56 PM

Butchart Gardens is closing for two weeks to give staff a break, starting Jan. 24.

 

A note on the signature tourist attraction’s web page says the break is in appreciation of the hard work by its staff after a difficult year.

 

The gardens will be closed to the public from Jan. 24 to Feb. 6 inclusive.

 

All 12-month passes valid for the temporary closure period will be extended by 14 days — the total number of days closed.

 

 

 

https://www.timescol...-hiatus-4958464

 

 

 

 

 

????


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 15 January 2022 - 12:56 PM.

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#112 Spy Black

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Posted 15 January 2022 - 01:25 PM

Operating during COVID is difficult enough, and then the multiple snow incidents over the festive season leveraged their staff to the max.

 

The Gardens were open during each and every snowfall (and it was absolutely stunning in the snow), with the parking lots completely cleared, and all paths completely snow free and completely de-iced.

Note that the snow on the paths wasn't just shovelled over into the garden beside it ... the miles of paths were completely cleared of snow, with all that snow removed to a remote location, such that to the attendee, you need never even touch snow with your feet from their exiting your car, to your return to your car after a couple of hours walking around the Gardens.

 

Then ... all those Christmas lights had to come down and be put away. Not a small job, and not all that easy for the staff to accomplish immediately following the shovelling of 30 tons of snow.

It's probably safe to say that the staff are completely exhausted, bordering on burnt out.

As well, there is much work ahead if it looks like the COVID situation will allow for the fireworks to go ahead this summer ... with that project (fireworks) beginning almost immediately after the Christmas lighting display is put away.

 

As well, the gardening staff would have to examine the entire facility in the post snow days and weeks to ensure that there was no permanent damage to any of the plants or flowers as a result of the somewhat heavy (for Victoria) snowfall.

 

So a two week "break" as a result of all that work is simply demonstrative of being appreciated by the very decent owner of the Gardens such that she maintains concern for the health and well being of her entire staff.


Edited by Spy Black, 15 January 2022 - 01:39 PM.

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#113 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 15 January 2022 - 01:36 PM

This is a good article from 2011:

 

 

 

 

 

Rick Los, the garden’s horticultural director, thinks she would love it.

“But what she would love most is that people were having a good time soaking up the beauty of the colour displays and the garden in general,” he says.

 

 

https://vancouversun...-butchart-think



#114 spanky123

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Posted 15 January 2022 - 04:39 PM

 

Butchart Gardens is closing for two weeks to give staff a break, starting Jan. 24.

 

 

Anyone who has ever worked at the BG will tell you that the organization reeks quality from the top down. Bravo to them for looking out for their staff and patrons.


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