Many Major Projects are Underway here in Cambell River
Seymour Pacific’s Head Office officially opened its doors in the fall of 2014. With its West Coast inspired design, rain gardens, water feature and 200+ employees, the down town core is enjoying the benefits.
Berwick By the Sea Residences is a prestigious retirement community that completed construction in 2014 and started moving in occupants this past fall.
The new Comfort Inn is the latest building to be added to our downtown. Located beside Berwick Residences, the 4 story hotel is making the most of its close proximity to the ocean, planning on most of the 55 units featuring an ocean view. Plans include an indoor pool, fitness room, a business centre and two meeting rooms.
The New Hospital broke ground in 2013. To date, the concrete foundation is being poured and two cranes have been moved on site to begin constructing the walls. Wanting to hire as many local workers as possible, the Chief Project Office of the build has partnered up with the Director of Program Standards with the Industry Training Authority of BC, North Island College and North Vancouver Island Aboriginal Training Society. They have teamed up to create a plan with NIC on creating programs to address hiring needs, including improving some shorter-term certificates such as first aid training, dry walling, general labour training, and adding programs like the Constructing Craft worker.
New Horizons Residential Care Facility has been chosen by Island Health to build a new wing, adding forty new publicly funded beds and five new private pay beds. Twenty of the publicly funded beds will deliver licensed dementia care and twenty will deliver more complex care services. This will make a total of 126 residential care capacity beds and 13 private pay beds. Construction is slated to begin in 2015, is expected to take 21 months, with the wing opening in 2017.
BC Hydro Projects:
· $1 billion John Hart Hydro Project – Construction continues on the upgrade and overhaul of the generating station. Ground blasting is rumoured to be starting soon and January to March should see the continuation of site prep and tree falling. Managers hope to see a 90% local hire rate in the coming year.
· Seismic Upgrades to the John Hart and Strathcona Dams will start as the Generating station work closes. This project is another major undertaking and is expected to cost in the hundreds of millions.
· Upgrading the local Distribution Grid is another Hydro project just announced. Noticing that the grid currently serving Campbell River is nearing capacity due to Campbell River’s growth, Hydro plans on spending $25 million to increase supply to local customers. The upgrade also ensures that there will be enough capacity for further future growth in residential and commercial development. Combined with the other major projects, BC Hydro estimates it will be working in Campbell River for at least the next 20 years.
· BC Hydro’s New Office at Quinsam Crossing officially opened and staff moved out of the 40 year old office into the new building earlier this month.
Quicksilver LNG Plant has Campbell River anxiously waiting to hear more news. Already starting its reclamation project of the old mill site, this is potentially a multi-billion dollar project. With several LNG projects moving ahead across the province (ExxonMobil proposed plant in Prince Rupert, Woodfibre LNG in Squamish & Shell-led LNG Canada proposal in Kitimat), Campbell Riverites remain hopeful that positive news is headed our way.
The New Mayor, Andy Adams is clear on his agenda on making positive economic changes in Campbell River. His first objective is to revive the forestry industry in Campbell River and has already resurrected the Future of Forestry Task Force, choosing former mayor Charlie Cornfield to lead it. The task force’s aim is to rejuvenate the industry and attract forestry businesses into Campbell River, working closely with forest-related companies in Campbell River and Vancouver Island. One main goal of the task force will be to establish a community forest in Campbell River. Community forests are located on provincial land and leased by a community for 25 yrs with a renewable option every 10 yrs. This community forest could be a positive source of revenue for the city and also be a working lab for expanded forestry related programs at North Island College.
Elk Falls Suspension Bridge, is a $650,000 venture started by the Rotary Club. With some help from BC Hydro, construction started earlier in 2014 and everyone involved is hoping it will be open in the spring or fall of 2015. The bridge will stretch 64 meters and hover 65 meters over the falls. Also being constructed are two new viewing platforms and a new 80 stall parking lot.
Campbell River is a hive of activity; we’ll keep you posted as more major projects are announced!