Commissioner Street and Beecher Bay Spill Response Bases

Owner: Western Canada Marine Response Corporation  |  Vancouver/Sooke, BC


About the Project

As part of the Trans Mountain’s Expansion Project and its commitment to marine safety and risk mitigation, a program to expand and enhance South Coast oil spill response capabilities was tasked to the Western Canada Marine Response Corporation (WCMRC). Eight strategic spill response base locations were identified by WCMRC to achieve a World-Class Marine Spill Prevention and Response System, which included the Vancouver Base operations at 2800 Commissioner Street (24hr base) and the Vancouver Island base at Beecher Bay designed by Moffatt and Nichol (M&N). This meticulously orchestrated expansion initiative embodies an unwavering commitment to elevating regional preparedness and bolstering ecological stewardship in maritime environments, as well as adding value to WCMRC in becoming a leading force in marine oil spill response and earning recognition and trust from communities and the industry.

The Commissioner Street Spill Response Base located at 2800 Commissioner Street involved the construction of two barge berths for accommodating a 3500-tonne barge and a 1000-tonne barge on a concrete float with access landings and moorage of various spill response vessels. The float is serviced with potable water, dry fire main, sewage disposal, lighting, and power supply services and accessed by a gangway. Additional upland improvements included renovation of existing concrete deck wharf, construction of two Britco buildings, parking stalls, power supply utilities, security cameras, and telecommunication services.

The Beecher Bay Spill Response base is located within the existing Cheanuh Marina in Sooke, Vancouver Island. The project includes a new concrete shore abutment to support an aluminum gangway for pedestrian and vehicular access, 128m-long concrete float for spill response vessel moorage, temporary access to the marina floats during construction, new aluminum framed walkway and finger floats, other services, and a 196m-long concrete floating breakwater.


The strategic framework for delivering WCMRC Spill Response Base projects is the collaborative efforts from a team of qualified professionals to ensure a successful project outcome to resolve the challenges of the brownfield sites.

The design approach for Commissioner Street Response Base was centered around core principles of sustainability and collaboration. Concrete floats were selected over other materials for their stability, robustness, and longevity in the marine environment. All stormwater drainage collected from the upland is processed through an oily water separator to capture potential pollutants before being discharged to the Burrard Inlet. There was close collaboration with Vancouver Fraser Port Authority and the contractor for incorporating the widening and utility upgrades at the Commissioner Street site entrance.

The project approach for the Beecher Bay Spill Response Base was to ensure close collaboration and communications with the Scia’new First Nations. Planning for the constructability of the facility was done early on the project with consideration of the First Nations’ input. Disruption to existing marina operations was mitigated by providing temporary access to the remainder of the marina during construction. New like-for-like replacement floats were installed after marine equipment was moved. The reconciliation was achieved through open dialogue and collaborative decision-making.


M&N achieved total completion of the Commissioner Street and Beecher Bay Spill Response Base in May 2023 and October 2023, respectively, showcasing meticulous planning and collaboration with the project team to overcome unknowns of brown field construction. The comprehensive execution of both projects reflects M&N’s commitment to excellence, providing WCMRC with state-of-the-art and resilient spill response facilities.

Service(s) Provided
Coastal and civil engineering

Project Team (Consultants)
EXP Services
Envirochem Services Inc.
Orca Health and Safety Consulting Inc.

Project Team (Contractors)
BEL Contracting 
Fraser River Pile Driving 
International Marine Floatation Systems
Bluewater System


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