Construction of the replacement Richard McBride Elementary School is humming along smoothly in Sapperton.
Dave Crowe, director of capital projects for the New Westminster school district, updated trustees on the construction project at their Nov. 17 operations committee meeting.
“This is our success story right now,” Crowe said.
Excavation and site preparation was completed over the summer, and now the project has moved on to the beginnings of the “construction” phase – the beginnings of pouring the gymnasium floor and the start of installation of the steel structure.
Crowe noted the only recent issue that cropped up was a “bit of a mishap” with a water main connection to the existing school.
“Once we removed some of the soil around a very, very old connection, it let go, so we were out of water in the school for about two-and-a-half hours,” he said.
(In that intervening time, the school informed parents, it provided hand sanitizer throughout the school and had a supply of bottled water available as needed.)
Crowe said the contractors and school district maintenance staff got in very quickly to correct the problem, which was a “non-issue at the end of the day.”
Crowe said COVID-19 hasn’t caused any problems with this project yet – unlike at the NWSS construction project, where workforce and supply-chain challenges related to the pandemic have slowed its completion.
Crowe noted it’s possible issues may crop up as the project moves forward, but to this point all is looking good – and Mother Nature has been on side, too.
““The weather has been cooperating,” Crowe said. “We’ve been very fortunate on the schedule and timing of this project.”