The governments of Canada and British Columbia invest in Belleville Terminal redevelopment

News release

Victoria, British Columbia, June 30, 2023 — Today, the Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, the Honourable Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure of British Columbia, and Her Worship Marianne Alto, Mayor of the City of Victoria announced a joint investment of more than $293 million to redevelop the Belleville Terminal and improve the traveling experience for ferry passengers.

The project will incorporate the highest energy efficiency standards and resiliency standards for a changing climate. The new all-electric terminal building will include mass timber components and renewable materials to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to mitigate site contamination, meeting LEED Gold standards and supporting governments’ emissions reduction commitments.

This upgrade will bring Belleville Terminal into compliance with the Canada-US Land, Rail, Marine, and Air Transport Preclearance Agreement. Using preclearance, travellers will complete the entire U.S. customs and immigration process in Victoria and enjoy the convenience of disembarking in the United States with no further delays.

As an international gateway for goods, services, and passengers, the new terminal will drive the regional and provincial economies. It will support an anticipated $257 million in visitor spending and an anticipated 3,200 regional jobs per year in 20 years. Belleville Terminal currently supports approximately 2,000 jobs on southern Vancouver Island.

With an approved budget of $303.9 million, the project is expected to be completed in time for the 2028 season.

Belleville Terminal generates 220,000 overnight visitors and enables the ferry operators to sell over 16,000 vacation packages annually, all of which are provided by local businesses in Victoria. Travelers spend approximately $174 million annually, generating $268 million in economic output and $155 million in provincial GDP.

Belleville Terminal is on the traditional territory of the Lekwungen peoples, also known today as the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, and other Coast Salish peoples. The BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure is working collaboratively with the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations to identify opportunities to showcase the cultural and geographical significance of the project’s location in Victoria’s Inner Harbour and welcome visitors into Lekwungen territory.

By investing in infrastructure, the Government of Canada is growing our country’s economy, building resilient communities, and improving the lives of Canadians.


“By investing in a premier international gateway terminal that meets modern safety and security standards, our government will help grow British Columbia’s economy and ensure a prosperous and sustainable future. This project will welcome global tourists, and business travelers into the heart of Victoria’s inner harbour with world-class service while creating good paying jobs and facilitating the movement of goods.”

The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities

“The new facility we’re building is going to generate hundreds of new jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in additional visitor spending over the coming decades,” said Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Rob Fleming. “A modern preclearance terminal will make travel more convenient for tourists while enhancing security and trade between Vancouver Island and Washington State, improving Vancouver Island’s tourism sector and boosting regional business investment.”

The Honourable Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure

“Visitors from around the world come to B.C. to enjoy our worldclass tourism offerings and many of them arrive in Victoria by ferry via the Belleville Terminal. The redevelopment of the terminal is just one way our government is working with our tourism partners to enhance visitors’ experiences, create more opportunities for people working in this sector, and to include new ways for Indigenous communities to share and showcase their culture and artistry in B.C.’s tourism sector.”

The Honourable Lana Popham, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport

“Washington State is excited this important project to modernize the Belleville Terminal is moving forward. I appreciate the governments of British Columbia, Canada, and all their partners for leaning in to make this happen. This project ensures that the peoples and economies of British Columbia and Washington State will continue to be deeply integrated with one another, which makes all our lives richer.”

Denny Heck, Lieutenant Governor of Washington State 

“This is a transformational project that delivers on Council’s priority for our city's economic health and community vitality. Our immense thanks to both the provincial and federal governments for their investment in critical infrastructure supporting diverse tourism and service jobs across the region.”

Her Worship Marianne Alto, Mayor of the City of Victoria

"Songhees Nation’s partnership in the Belleville Terminal Redevelopment Project opens a door of immense opportunities and growth for our community. This partnership is not just about physical space, but about fostering cultural exchange, economic empowerment, and community development. It is an affirmation of our shared commitment to build bridges, honour our heritage, and create a better future for our people. Together, we will harness the power of collaboration and create a vibrant space that celebrates our traditions, uplifts our voices, and nurtures the well-being of our Nation."

Chief Ron Sam, Songhees Nation  

“We are pleased to be partnering with British Columbia and Canada in this exciting project. The Belleville Terminal is located on one of the village sites of the Lekwungen people. Our inclusion in the design, construction and operation of the new terminal is evidence of the critical role our Nation plays and will play in the future development of the Victoria area. It is a long-overdue acknowledgement of our existence and our rights. We look forward to jointly building a better future for all residents within our traditional lands”.

Chief Rob Thomas, Esquimalt Nation

“We are delighted by the announcement of this critical infrastructure project that will future proof and propel forward the visitor economy in Greater Victoria. We are grateful to the Province, the Government of Canada, the partner ferry operators, and the many industry leaders who worked on this file for the past three decades. I would like to particularly thank Minister Fleming for his determination to bring this file to a successful conclusion.”

Paul Nursey, CEO of Destination Greater Victoria

Quick facts

  • The Government of Canada is investing is investing $41,644,000 in this project, while the Government of British Columbia is investing $252,274,058.

  • Discussions with ferry operators Black Ball Ferry Line and FRS Clipper are underway to determine their respective contributions to the project. Procurement will begin in the coming weeks.

  • The first phase of the project, anticipated to be complete next year, will build a temporary terminal in the Steamship Building and a new wharf to accommodate Clipper and US Customs and Border Protection.

  • The Canada Border Services Agency and Black Ball ferry operations will continue to use their existing spaces, ramps and vehicle areas.

  • The second phase will demolish the existing Clipper terminal infrastructure, replacing it with a LEED Gold pre-clearance terminal.

  • The second phase, which will begin following completion of the first phase, also includes a new commercial goods processing facility.

  • The Government of Canada’s funding comes from the Public Transit Infrastructure Stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program. 

  • This stream supports the building, expansion, and upgrading of urban and rural transit networks.

  • Investments in public transit help Canadians get where they need to be, create new manufacturing and construction jobs, reduce pollution, and make life more affordable.

  • Including today’s announcement, 48 infrastructure projects or project bundles under the Public Transit Infrastructure Stream have been funded in British Columbia with a total federal contribution of more than $2.4 billion and a total provincial contribution of nearly $3.8 billion.

  • The Government of Canada is investing $14.9 billion over the next eight years in reliable, fast, affordable, and clean public transit. This funding includes $3 billion per year in permanent, predictable federal public transit funding which will be available to support transit solutions beginning in 2026-27.

  • Since 2015, the Government of Canada has invested over $24.8 billion in transit projects across the country, providing Canadians with cleaner and more efficient commuting options.

  • Under the Investing in Canada Plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

  • Preclearance is the process by which border officers from the United States carry out immigration, customs, and agriculture inspections and other requirements in Canada before allowing the movement of goods or people across the border.

  • Canada and the United States have a long history of successful preclearance operations, with over 16 million passengers a year precleared for flights to the United States from Canada's eight largest airports prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Infrastructure Canada helps address complex challenges that Canadians face every day—ranging from the rapid growth of our cities, to climate change, and environmental threats to our water and land.

Associated links


For more information (media only), please contact:

Jean-Sébastien Comeau
Press Secretary and Senior Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc
Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities

Media Relations
Infrastructure Canada
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