WSP announced it has been awarded the engineering services for the development of the Seabird Island Community and Cultural Centre, Upper Fraser Valley, British Columbia.

The Centre will provide a home for cultural activities, community gatherings, and designated Elders’ space, youth space, and mental health services for the community and beyond.

Located in the District of Kent, Seabird Island is home to around 1,000 people and provides vital services for the Seabird Island Band community, including comprehensive health services, education from K-12 and a college as well. The new facility, being developed for the community core and near existing and proposed new housing, is designed as a 20,000 sq. ft., two-storey building in traditional longhouse style, with timber posts, a mezzanine on the second floor that looks down on the large gathering hall, and First Nations art and design throughout.

“Our team is excited for the opportunity to play a key role in the development of Seabird Island’s new cultural centre, working with Patrick Stewart Architects to create a design that is a safe space for the community to gather and embraces the past, present and future of Seabird Island,” says William Johnston, senior director, Property & Buildings, WSP in Canada. “This highly anticipated centre has the ability to bring positive transformation to the people who both live and visit these lands, and we are honoured to play a role in bringing this project to life.”

The new cultural community resource centre will provide a place for community members to gather, share in traditional knowledge and activity, and build new stories to be passed down through the generations. The centre will include a large gathering space for over 600 people, an Elders Room, a traditional Round Room, several multi-purpose areas, a commercial community kitchen, offices and accessible amenities. It will serve as a marshalling and temporary sheltering area in times of disaster, primarily flood or fire, and is being designed and engineered with solar power and sustainability goals in mind.
The anticipated start date for construction is spring of 2023. The project is scheduled for overall completion by fall of 2024.

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Featured image: (Seabird Island Band)

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