(Team Canada/Olympic.ca)

The appealing qualities of Elk Lake may be its undoing for Canada’s national rowing team.

Since 1984, Canadian Olympic rowers have trained on Victoria’s Elk Lake. However, the waters have become crowded with visitors, prompting a potential move for the national team.

A call was issued by the national rowing team asking if any communities would like to host the rowers. Five areas responded enthusiastically.

Two of the five proposals remain on the island, with one being from Finlayson Arm in Langford, and the other from Quamichan Lake in North Cowichan.

One of the remaining three proposals comes from Buntzen Lake, Anmore, B.C. The last two proposals come from Ontario.

After including the athletes, coaches, support staff, and medical staff, the national rowing team employs roughly 200 people.

If the team leaves Elk Lake, the effects both socially and economically would be felt.

The entirety of the national team, though sometimes spread throughout the country, is currently in Victoria as they prepare for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

However, where the team will be based after the Olympics is uncertain. A decision on the proposals is expected sometime in the autumn of 2020.

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