Vancouver awards $71 million contract for Coal Harbor waterfront school and social housing

In a recent public meeting, the Vancouver City Council confirmed a $70.6 million contract to a contractor to build a new Coal Harbor waterfront complex that will include a primary school, childcare and social housing.

Haebler Construction Projects is expected to begin construction in early 2022 for completion in the summer of 2024.

The latter decision follows the approval by the municipal council of the application for rezoning by the municipality in early July 2021 and the approval by the council for the building permit of the building permit application in March 2021.

The complex will be built on the surface parking lot adjacent to the seawall at 480 Broughton Street – at the foot of Broughton Street, immediately west of the Coal Harbor Community Centre.

480 bringon street vancouver coal harbor primary school social housing

Site of the Coal Harbor Elementary School, Childcare and Social Housing. (Henriquez Partners Architects/Vancouver School Board/City of Vancouver)

480 bringon street vancouver coal harbor primary school social housing

2021 artistic rendering of the Coal Harbor Elementary School, Childcare and Social Housing Complex at 480 Broughton Street, Vancouver. (Henriquez Partners Architects/Vancouver School Board/City of Vancouver)

The 127-meter-tall 11-storey tower will have a 43,000-square-meter primary school for 340 students within the first three levels, a 9,600-square-meter kindergarten on the fourth level with an outdoor play area on the roof of the school, and 60 social housing units inside. the top six levels. The building, designed by local firm Henriquez Partners Architects, will aim for LEED Gold and passive house certifications for green building.

Haebler’s contract value, even after GST’s inclusion, is below the city’s original $80.8 million project budget. The actual value of the contract awarded sets aside $28.4 million for the school, $9.9 million for childcare and $32.3 million for social housing.

480 bringon street vancouver coal harbor primary school social housing

2021 Coal Harbor primary school, childcare and social housing. (Henriquez Partners Architects/Vancouver School Board/City of Vancouver)

480 bringon street vancouver coal harbor primary school social housing

2021 artistic rendering of the Coal Harbor Elementary School, Childcare and Social Housing Complex at 480 Broughton Street, Vancouver. (Henriquez Partners Architects/Vancouver School Board/City of Vancouver)

480 bringon street vancouver coal harbor primary school social housing

2021 artistic rendering of the Coal Harbor Elementary School, Childcare and Social Housing Complex at 480 Broughton Street, Vancouver. (Henriquez Partners Architects/Vancouver School Board/City of Vancouver)

Vancouver School Board (VSB) will cover full school costs through a portion of the $75 million it received from BC Hydro. The electric utility reached a deal with VSB in 2018 to use the footprint of the Lord Roberts Annex school for its new replacement substation in Nelson Park in the West End.

In order to begin construction of the underground substation, the Coal Harbor School must be built to provide a temporary location for Lord Roberts students.

By the end of the decade, a new replacement school, also funded by BC Hydro, will be built above the underground substation, allowing Lord Roberts students to return to Nelson Park. In this final stage, the Coal Harbor school would effectively become the much-needed additional capacity for the primary school system in downtown Vancouver.

The assessment process of the Coal Harbor project has been accelerated by city officials due to the critical need to build the new substation, which will replace the aging Dal Grauer substation on Burrard Street adjacent to Scotiabank Theatre. With a growing population and significant new developments, electricity demand in Vancouver is expected to grow by 75% over the next three decades.

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