Nelson Civic Centre gets energy-efficiency upgrade

August 4, 2022 at 1:19 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

The Nelson Civic Centre is getting a substantial upgrade to improve energy efficiency, decrease climate pollution and improve the comfort and lifespan of the building.

“Heritage buildings like the Nelson Civic Centre are part and parcel to the cultural fabric of our communities,” said the Hon. Harjit Sajjan, federal Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, on behalf of the Hon. Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “These upgrades will extend its lifespan, ensuring this striking art deco structure can continue to serve Nelson residents for generations to come.”

Through an investment from the CleanBC Communities Fund, the Civic Centre’s auditorium will receive energy-efficient upgrades to the building envelope, roof, windows, doors and mechanical systems. Currently, the facility’s concrete walls have no insulation, the roof structure has minimal insulation, and the air-handling units are outdated, providing air circulation to only some areas of the building.

“We’re working to improve an important community resource by making it more energy efficient and a better, more comfortable space for visitors,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy. “The Civic Centre is the city of Nelson’s highest-emitting building and requires a significant energy retrofit to bring it to a modern standard. By working with the city and the federal government, we’re accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels toward a net-zero-emissions future and supporting local jobs in the clean economy.”

The building’s exterior walls will be enveloped with an insulated, high-efficiency skin that will reduce energy requirements and protect deteriorating concrete from freeze-thaw cycles. Energy-recovery ventilators and a heat-recovery chiller will provide heating and cooling capacity, reducing dependency on fossil fuels.

“People in Nelson know what an incredible community resource the Civic Centre is, and we’re working to make it even better and more environmentally and climate friendly,” said Brittny Anderson, MLA for Nelson-Creston. “Funding this project will provide multiple benefits to our region and the people who enjoy the Civic Centre and the surrounding neighbourhood. Not only will it extend the life of the building and reduce its carbon footprint, it will boost the local economy by providing good jobs for people.”

Upgrading the 87-year-old heritage building is expected to reduce its natural gas consumption and carbon emissions by approximately two-thirds. The Province is providing $2.82 million for the project, with an additional $1 million provided by the federal government and $1.4 million from the City of Nelson.

“The Civic Centre building is a valued cultural and recreational facility that has served our regional community well for almost 90 years since it opened in 1935,” said John Dooley, mayor, City of Nelson. “This project will substantially improve the comfort and accessibility of the building, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Improving the energy performance of our buildings is a key component of NelsonNext, our ambitious climate action plan.”

The CleanBC Communities Fund is part of the CleanBC Roadmap to 2030, the Province’s plan to expand and accelerate climate action by building on B.C.’s natural advantages – abundant and clean electricity, innovative technology and a highly skilled workforce. It sets a path for increased collaboration to build a British Columbia that works for everyone.

Quick Facts:

  • The CleanBC Communities Fund is a partnership with the federal government through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
  • The Province and the federal government have committed as much as $240 million of combined investment into the fund over three rounds.
  • The Nelson Civic Centre upgrade project is part of the second round of low-carbon infrastructure projects.
  • Upgrades to the Nelson Civic Centre are expected to begin in 2023 and take two years to complete.

Learn More:

To learn more about the CleanBC Communities Fund, visit:

To learn more about the second round of CleanBC Communities Fund projects, visit:

To read the CleanBC Roadmap to 2030, visit:

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