Ministry of Transportation says it is in talks with BC Parks to address parking concerns.
Cathedral Grove, between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni is a popular spot for tourists again this summer resulting in a lack of parking.
They often find themselves parking as far as several hundred metres down highway 4 and walking back on a narrow shoulder.
“What do you think of the parking and everything you’re seeing?” CHEK News asked Dough Matthewman as he was walking along the shoulder. “There’s no parking. It’s chaos and crazy” he replied.
The parking lots on both sides of the highway provide limited spaces for people who visit the park from around the world.
“As you can see and you look up and down the road, there are just people all over the place and it’s only a matter of time, I’m surprised that nobody’s been hit” added Matthewman.
One couple visiting Cathedral Grove from Switzerland was also forced to park well down the highway.
“It’s quite dangerous to walk along the road if there’s so many cars” said Valerie Vonallnen.
Building a new parking lot was a contentious issue 12 years ago and a new one was never built but as the stretch of Hwy 4 gets busier along with the park, local MLA Scott Fraser says it might be time to consider another option.
“I have brought this up in the past and I will bring this up again, when we meet with the ministry staff and with the minister in the fall session so you know we’re observing it now. It’s obviously a problem. I don’t believe that problem is going to go away” said NDP MLA for Alberni-Padific Rim Scott Fraser.
The Ministry of Transportation says it has initiated discussions with BC Parks about improving parking at Cathedral Grove adding this conversation is currently ongoing with other stakeholder groups.
Meanwhile some of the visitors to the park are all in favour of leaving it just the way it is.
“I think it would be a real shame for them to have to chop down any of this to build a parking lot and for me they should leave it as much like this as they possibly can” said Scottish visitor Marc Guerin.