Construction of new arts centre delayed

Greg Dobrowolski, special projects manager for the city, reported to city council on Monday that the root cause of the delay was that more asbestos had to be removed than was originally anticipated. That work forced a delay in roofing work that was ongoing, and when the two recent heavy rainfalls hit, there were holes in the roof where water seeped into the building, causing extensive damage to ceiling materials that will now have to be removed.

Now were concerned, because it was such a long period of time it was wet, if there is any mold, so well be doing some tests to make sure thats not an issue.

On top of that, he said the company hired to remove the asbestos also identified lead paint used on some of the structural steel elements inside the building, and as per WorkSafe BC protocols, a mitigation plan needs to be put into place for any work to be done to those structures.

We originally thought we wouldnt lose anytime, we would just shuffle the schedule around, but now it has become obvious were going to lose three to four weeks.

He said the good news is that work had been completed around the exterior of the building to prevent any water damage to its foundation.

He said given the contingency funds that are available, any additional work can be done within the approved budget and without making any major changes to the design plans.

Its not going to compromise the design – it will still be what was promised – and its still going to be on budget, its just unfortunately, not going to open at the time we thought it would be open.

He added the original plan was to have the Kiwanis Performing Arts Centre move into the new building over the Christmas break, but with the expected delay, they will now have to work with those programs to find an appropriate time to move in.

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