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Safer seats coming to two more Burnaby schools

Safer seats coming to two more Burnaby schools

June 26, 2019 at 11:40 am  BC, News, Politics

Students at Seaforth and Parkcrest elementary schools will soon be learning in seismically safe and modern schools.  

“Student safety is paramount for our government, and we are delivering results for students, families and school staff in Burnaby,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Education. “Today’s announcement is another great step towards safer schools and we’ll keep working with the Burnaby School District until all seats are seismically safe.”

Up to $12.85 million have been budgeted for Parkcrest Elementary, where two of three school blocks are rated a high risk in the event an earthquake. One classroom block will be seismically upgraded. Another will be demolished and replaced. Students will stay on-site and no temporary portables will be needed during construction, which is expected to start in summer 2020 and be complete in fall 2022.

“These seismic upgrades for Parkcrest and Seaforth schools are great news for students and families in Burnaby,” said Janet Routledge, MLA for Burnaby North. “These safe and modern schools will ensure students are learning in safe environments for many years to come.”

Seaforth Elementary will receive up to $15.76 million to upgrade 12 classrooms, the main entrance, library, gymnasium, washrooms, storage and mechanical rooms, the staff room and medical room, and the covered play area. Temporary classrooms will be used during construction to ensure students aren’t disrupted while work is being completed. The gym will stay open during the school year and will be upgraded during summer. Construction is expected to begin in summer 2020 and is scheduled to be complete by September 2022.

“This is a welcome and important investment in our school communities,” said Gary Wong, chair, Burnaby Board of Education. “Providing seismically safe buildings for our students – and for those who work with them – is a priority we share with the Ministry of Education.”

Government has approved $115 million for seismic upgrades in Burnaby since September 2017. With this $28.6-million announcement, five schools will be seismically upgraded or replaced in Burnaby, including Alpha Secondary, Burnaby North Secondary and Armstrong Elementary.

“I am proud our government is making these important investments in student safety in Burnaby,” said Katrina Chen, MLA for Burnaby-Lougheed. “We are making great progress towards having every student in B.C. attend a seismically safe school.”

Government is committed to giving every B.C. student a seismically safe place to go to school. Budget 2019 includes an additional $250 million to accelerate the Seismic Mitigation Program, for a total of $791 million over three years.

Quick Facts:

  • Since September 2017, government has announced combined funding of $665 million for seismic projects for 21,261 student seats, including this announcement.
  • Budget 2019 includes a record $2.7 billion for school capital investments, including new schools, expansions, seismic upgrades and land purchases for future schools.
  • Since September 2017, the Province has approved about $1.4 billion in school capital projects.

Learn More:

For more information about major capital projects at B.C. schools: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/education-training/administration/capital/major-capital-projects

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