New Richard McBride school set for completion by end of 2021

Construction of the new Richard McBride Elementary School is on target for students to move in by the end of next year.

The replacement for the existing 90-year-old building is underway on the Richmond Street school site, and the school district’s director of capital projects says the work is proceeding according to plan.

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“This continues to be a good news story where everything is going really well,” Dave Crowe told school trustees at their Oct. 13 operations committee meeting.

Richard McBride Elementary School, construction
The new Richard McBride Elementary School is starting to take shape. This is the view on Thanksgiving (Monday, Oct. 12). - Julie MacLellan

Site preparation work has finished, and the contractor is getting set to pour the concrete slab and start installing the steel structure.

“It’ll really start looking like a building,” Crowe said.

The project is still coming in within budget – just shy of $35 million – and it’s expected to be ready to open in December 2021 or January 2022. Full completion of the project, including landscaping and demolition of the old school, is set to take place by September 2022.

Crowe said the district remains “optimistic” that there’s a chance for earlier completion.

Crowe told trustees that, so far, the project has been unaffected by COVID-19 and the resulting supply chain issues that have caused problems with the New Westminster Secondary School replacement project. But he noted the project is reaching the stage where supply-chain challenges could become an issue, so the district is being cautious.

“We’ll monitor that very carefully,” he said.

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