city hall

The City of Nanaimo is administered by Mayor Bill McKay and eight Council members. Municipal elections are held every four years, with the next election to be held in November 2018. City departments include Engineering, Public Works, Development Services, Finance, Community Safety, Parks Recreation and Culture and Administration. For additional information on City Hall, please visit or call (250) 754-4251.

public safety

Policing services are provided by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (R.C.M.P.). There are approximately 186 R.C.M.P. officers serving the Nanaimo area of which 142 positions are funded by the City of Nanaimo.

fire protection

Fire protection is provided by the City of Nanaimo Fire Department from five fire stations located around the city. There are 81 full-time firefighters and 37 paid on-call firefighters.

Recreation & Culture

Nanaimo offers a variety of recreational activities. The City’s Parks, Recreation and Culture Department provides a comprehensive year-round program of activities for residents of all ages and interests. Nanaimo boasts over 200 parks, 63 playgrounds, 4 public beaches, 20 picnic areas, 3 pools, 4 indoor ice rinks and 3 golf courses. Residents can enjoy a leisurely stroll along the waterfront sea wall, or a vigorous hike up Mount Benson. Newcastle Island, the charming provincial park just off the shores of downtown Nanaimo, is a popular summertime picnic and camping area. Buttertubs Marsh, in the heart of the city, is a wonderful place to view waterfowl and learn about our delicate ecosystem. Neck Point Park is a 14.5-hectare waterfront park known for its views and natural features. The park has a vast trail system of varying lengths and difficulty and offers a number of amenities including picnic areas, viewpoints and lookouts. The Linley Valley is a 5.8-hectare undeveloped park recently acquired by the City of Nanaimo.

The Nanaimo Area Lands Trust contributed $500,000 of the $2 million purchase price as a result of a community fundraising campaign that saw over 1,100 donors. The City of Nanaimo contributed the additional $1.5 million. The Linley Valley contains many old growth trees, open meadows and wetlands. Residents enjoy the informal walking trails, the beautiful scenery and the abundance of wildlife.

During the late fall and early winter months, Nanaimo becomes home to thousands of Stellar and California sea lions; bald eagles grace our skies throughout the year.

Nanaimo has a growing community of musicians, dance companies, museums, artists, as well as several active community theatre groups and a symphony orchestra. Residents enjoy a variety of entertainment throughout the year.


Nanaimo has three branches of the Vancouver Island Regional Library. The Central Reference Service is also located in the Nanaimo Harbourfront branch. About 1 million books, magazines, videos, cassettes, newspapers and other material are available in the branches or through interbranch request service. Each branch also offers access to the Internet and other electronic information sources.

Vancouver Island Regional Library Locations:
90 Commercial Street – 250-753-1154
3032 Barons Road – 250-758-5544
6250 Hammond Bay Road – 250-758-4697