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Seismic improvements continue in Vancouver schools

December 5, 2022 at 1:28 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

Students at Henry Hudson Elementary are a step closer to having a new seismically safer school with construction underway on a replacement that will include a neighbourhood learning centre.

“I’m proud of the work we’re doing in Vancouver and throughout B.C. to invest in seismically safer learning environments for students,” said Jennifer Whiteside, Minister of Education and Child Care. “It’s exciting to see construction start on Henry Hudson Elementary, and with the addition of a neighbourhood learning centre for child care spaces, we will enhance the services and benefits for families and students for years to come.”

The Province has invested approximately $33 million for this project, with the Vancouver School District contributing an additional $1 million. The new school will be seismically safer, as well as more accessible, with the inclusion of elevators and parking for people with disabilities.

LEED Gold standards will make the building more energy efficient and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Students will remain in the original Henry Hudson Elementary while construction is underway. The new school is expected to be ready to welcome students in spring 2025.

“It is wonderful to see the investments happening in our community, especially for young families,” said Brenda Bailey, MLA for Vancouver-False Creek. “Now that construction is underway, the community can look forward to a brand-new school that also includes child care spaces. Our government is delivering on our promises to build and provide the services that families count on.”

The neighbourhood learning centre, which will be built within the new Henry Hudson Elementary, will accommodate the existing 67 before- and after-school care spaces and the 20-space preschool. To further support families in the neighbourhood, the City of Vancouver will contribute $11.2 million to create an additional 69 child care spaces at the school for newborns to age four.

Since September 2017, the Government of B.C. has invested more than $300 million to seismically upgrade or replace 12 schools in Vancouver. The Vancouver School District has contributed an additional $7.5 million.

Once complete these projects will add approximately 7,000 safe seats to the district. Other seismic replacement projects include Eric Hamber Secondary, Sir Matthew Begbie Elementary, David Lloyd George Elementary and Bayview Community Elementary.

“A key priority of the Vancouver School District is to ensure all students attend seismically safe schools as quickly as possible,” says Victoria Jung, board chair, Vancouver School District. “We are pleased to hear the seismic work is underway, as it brings us another step closer to making more schools in the district seismically safe.”

To support this momentum, Budget 2022 includes $3.1 billion for school capital investments that provide a better place for students to learn.

Learn More:

Vancouver School District: https://www.vsb.bc.ca/Pages/default.aspx 

The Ministry of Education’s Seismic Mitigation Program: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content?id=14848EBBEF10466D8C70DAAE25B4A1D4  

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