Customs House Green Space

Garry oak trees along boardwalk of Victoria’s Inner Harbour mark the green space of the Customs House. This board walk connects the two parking areas that are below Wharf Street. The trees and shrubs soften the concrete and rock landscape that surrounds most of the simple brick and stone three story building, also known as the Malahat Building. This building was built in eighteen seventy four for the Dominion government. Designed by the city’s chief architect T.S. Scott, it is considered unadorned even with its mansard roof and oval dormer windows. The perimeter of the building has landscaped hedges, flower beds and a small grass over area with an anchor and a uniquely carved spindle, one of seven signs of the Lekwungen, a Coast Salish family group. Near the edge of the small parking lot north of the building are mooring rings that had been used to secure ships to shore. As a means to accommodate numerous vessels along a shore line, boats could bow anchor and then stern tie to the mooring ring. A small plaque describes this site as the location of Fort Victoria. This space is part of the David Foster Way, a five kilometer harbour side walk. Bastion Square and Reeson Regional Park are north along Wharf Street, where as Ship Point Green Space and Victoria Harbour Casueway are to the south.

 

Geographic coordinates N48° 25′ 29” W123° 22′ 12″

 

Customs House Green Space can be reached Blanchard Street. Turn right onto Broughton Street, pass across Douglas Street, then turn right onto Wharf Street. The green space surrounds the heritage brick Customs House. There is limited roadside parking yet two parking lots are on either side of the green space. City buses travel along Douglas Street.

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