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Report Seeks to Enhance RV Park Development

April 18, 2008 by   - () Leave a Comment

A report containing 15 recommendations to create, maintain and expand recreational vehicle park development in British Columbia has been presented to Tourism, Sport and the Arts Minister Stan Hagen.
The report, titled Recommendations for Recreational Vehicle Park Development in British Columbia, is a project of the RV Park Working group, a joint industry/government working group on recreational vehicle park development that Hagen assembled in 2007 to identify ways to increase recreational vehicle tourism activity in British Columbia.
The report comes amid concerns that at least 74 RV parks in the province have either closed or changed use over the past three years, despite projections that the number of RVs in the province is projected to grow by 30% by 2015.
Among the recommendations are these:

  • Examine policies to make provincial lands more available to RVs.
  • Leave the issue of “boondocking” to individual municipalities based on local need and assessment.
  • Assist First Nations to develop RV campgrounds.
  • Alter campsites in high demand to better accommodate newer RV models.
  • Create price flexibility in the BC Parks system to better reflect market demands.
  • Develop overflow parking lots to accommodate RVs.
  • Consider changing sewage regulations to make them less prohibitive to RV park development.
    The recommendations should be implemented over the next three years, the report suggested.
    “To remain competitive, B.C. needs a variety of overnight accommodations for our visitors. With our spectacular natural environment and diverse outdoor recreation activities, B.C. is the ideal destination for camping and RVing,” said Hagen. “This report is the first step in preparing British Columbia to become the leader in this growing tourism sector.”
    The RV Park Working Group is composed of representatives from the Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts, the Ministry of Small Business and Revenue, Integrated Land Management Bureau, BC Parks, BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association (BCLCA), Nk’Mip RV Park, Holiday Trails Resort, Tourism Kelowna and Tourism Dawson Creek.
    “Over the past three years, the number of private overnight RV sites for rent has declined as campgrounds/RV parks have closed or changed use to permanent site rentals,” said Chris Bower, president of the BC Lodging and Campgrounds Association. “The report recognizes the change in land use, and its future impact on tourism, and sets out a number of solutions that our association is excited to look into further. As well, we are very interested at the prospect of working with First Nations groups to explore opportunities to expand and develop new RV parks that mirror the success of the Nk’Mip Campground and RV Park in Osoyoos.”
    Hagen met with the BCLCA to discuss the outcome of the RV Report and future actions. The 15 recommendations, presented to government and industry for consideration, identify issues requiring further exploration and suggest specific actions to create a favorable environment for B.C.’s RV businesses and visitors.
    As a next step, the RV Park Working Group will proceed with developing a plan over the next year that prioritizes key actions brought forward in the report.
    A link to a copy of the report can be found at http://www.tsa.gov.bc.ca/tourism.

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