Camosun College film studio plans on pause as deal with proponent falls through

Camosun College film studio plans on pause as deal with proponent falls through
Camosun College/Facebok
Camosun College's Interurban campus is shown in this file photo.

Plans to build a soundstage for TV and film productions at Camosun College’s Interurban Campus are heading back to the storyboard.

But the school is not calling “cut and wrap” on the project.

Camosun initially announced plans to explore building a film studio facility to tap into the rapidly growing Vancouver Island film industry and to provide training opportunities for students hoping to work in the sector in 2019.

The college received $150,000 in government funding to develop plans for the studio in 2021 and announced it had selected a partner, Ontario-based Visionary Group, to act as the proponent to advance the project forward for approvals and construction in February 2023.

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A 2022 artist rendering of new film studio at Camosun College’s Interurban campus in Saanich. (Camosun College)

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When CHEK News asked for an update on the project’s timeline Tuesday, spokesperson Rodney Porter said Camosun has chosen to end the relationship with Visionary in early fall 2023  “for a number of reasons.”

“We still continue to explore potential opportunities for a film studio on our Interurban campus,” Porter said in an email. The college is considering issuing a new tender process to find a new partner but has no confirmed plans yet.

Other film studio projects are also in the works on the South Island. The Malahat Nation announced it is moving forward with plans for a $200-million soundstage complex earlier this year. Two 20,000-square-foot spaces for film production are also included in the Langford Heights commercial complex planned on Millstream Road.

The only currently operating purpose-built film studio on the Island, Vancouver Island Film Studios, is located in Parksville.


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