A recreation initiative in Langford will have West Shore residents climbing high.
BoulderHouse Climbing is partnering with the City of Langford to open a 6,000-square-foot climbing gym in City Centre Park, adjacent to the new West Hills Stadium, by summer 2020.
“Recreation has long been a priority for Langford and what you’re seeing is businesses coming to Langford and wanting to be part of it,” said Cory Manton, manager of parks and recreation for the City of Langford. “It’s perfect for us because it provides another form of recreation for the residents and we don’t have the capital costs associated with building [or] running it.”
The facility will include an outdoor climbing area and will be BoulderHouse’s second Vancouver Island location. The first is located north of downtown Victoria on Quesnel Street.
Bouldering is a form of rock climbing done on smaller rock formations or climbing walls without using harnesses. BoulderHouse offers dynamic indoor climbing circuits and lessons, but co-owner Jean-Marc de la Plante says climbing offers something beyond physical benefits.
“What we try and do is not just build a climbing facility, but more of a climbing community,” he said in a phone conversation with Black Press Media. “One of the reasons we love bouldering so much is the community aspect that it brings – the social aspect.”
That’s because climbing is inherently a group activity, says de la Plante. Climbers don’t plug in their headphones and drown out the rest of the gym – they discuss routes and give pointers, working together to tackle difficult circuits.
And BoulderHouse, with its wide-range of walls and ever changing-circuits, caters to all-ages and experience levels.
“We make sure that the climb starts at basic movement level and basic strength requirements,” de la Plante explained. “As you progress through those levels, both technical difficulty and physical difficulty increase progressively until you reach the…top circuit level.”
De la Plante said Langford was a perfect location for the expanding business.
“It is an area with a lot of families and young people buying homes. That’s really our demographic,” he said, adding that the City of Langford’s recreation focus was another deciding factor. “We just fell in love with their desire to make Langford an amazing place to live.”
Construction is set to break ground in the next few months, with the facility expected to open by summer 2020.
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