(Photo by National Trust for Canada)

The future is looking bright for a derelict train station on Vancouver Island.

This month, residents of the Cowichan Valley are celebrating the news of a much-needed makeover coming to the Duncan Train Station.

After launching on January 20th, The Next Great Save featured 10 heritage landmarks across Canada needing repairs.

Over the course of 32 days, more than 200,000 votes were placed from coast to coast.

Right out of the gate, the local train station seized the lead, closing out the competition with a whopping 76,575 votes.

Marking a 23,791 lead over Nova Scotia’s La Vieille Maison, which came in second place at 52,784 votes, the historic 1916 CNR Hope Station rallied for third place with 22,382 votes. 

The Duncan Station took home $50,000, while second and third place earned $10,000 and $5,000.

“The Cowichan Historical Society is humbled by and grateful for the support the Cowichan Valley community has shown to this worthwhile preservation project. Thank you,” reads a post on the Museum’s page.

Now $50,000 richer, the proceeds from the competition will go towards phase two of restorations of the station which now operates as a local museum. 

The restorations include replacing the heat pumps, upgrading insulation and restoring windows to the building. 

Repairs to the exterior will begin later this year with plans to rebuild the brick chimneys, repair the doors and install new gutters and downspouts.

During the summer months, the museum serves as a tourist information centre that shares information about points of interest in the local area and on Vancouver Island.

The museum welcomed over 8,000 visitors in the summer of 2022.

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