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Parking lot off Island Highway in Parksville closed until further notice

IAG Developments no longer allowing parking in vacant lot
Emily Vance photo - The vacant lot on 113 Island Highway, owned by IAG Developments Ltd., has been closed to the public.

IAG Developments Ltd. has closed off their vacant lot on 113 Island Highway, off of Beachside Drive.

The lot is located between the Beach Club Resort and the Parksville Community Park. Many people, including Beach Club staff, were using it as a parking lot.

Alex Watson is the Chief Operating Officer of IAG Developments. He says he had to close it since the lot isn’t zoned for parking, and the company has been unable to obtain insurance without proper zoning.

“We’ve allowed the town to use it as a parking lot, but I’m liable for it and anything that happens in there,” said Watson.

“We’ve had some incidences with lit cigarettes, and [people] living in campers and cooking on site… from an insurance standpoint, I can’t do that and I can’t insure it because it’s not zoned for that usage.”

Watson says there were several incidents of lit cigarettes being left in the dry grass off the unpaved lot.

The company left the lot open until the end of the summer as they say they realize its value to the community, but it closed to the public last month.

The lot is often used by those going down to the beach, as there isn’t much parking in the area to accomodate the demand.

“A lot of the local businesses rely on it for spillover parking, and residents want to use the beach. We know it’s an important amenity. We’ve just got to make sure that we can do it, and do it in a safe way,” said Watson.

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