Students, teachers and staff at F.W. Howay Elementary will soon have a safer and refreshed school with work now underway to seismically upgrade the school.
The almost $4-million project includes reinforcing the walls and roof structures in the two-storey classroom block and the gym. The mechanical and electrical systems will be replaced in both of these areas. In total 1,730 square metres of the school will be upgraded to B.C.’s latest seismic standards. Work started over the summer break and is expected to be complete in March 2017.
Students will remain in the school and a temporary portable during construction. The New Westminster school district will carry out the work in two phases, and work in the afternoon to ensure student safety and minimize disruption.
F.W. Howay Elementary school is a high-priority project for the New Westminster school district. With this project underway, three of the district’s five seismic school projects are being addressed. The Ministry of Education is committed to working with the New Westminster school district to complete all their seismic mitigation projects as quickly as possible.
This project builds on recent funding announcements in the district, including $106.5 million to replace New Westminster Secondary – the largest school capital investment in B.C.’s history. Other work includes the new state-of-the-art $20.7-million Fraser River Middle school, which opened its doors this fall.
As a result of B.C.’s strong economic growth and fiscal discipline, government is able to support and fund projects like F.W. Howay Elementary that make a real difference in the lives of British Columbians.
Mike Bernier, Minister of Education –
“Our goal is to work as quickly as possible to seismically upgrade B.C. schools so students, teachers and staff have safe and secure buildings where they can teach and learn for years to come. It’s great to see this important project moving ahead – with work underway, students will soon have a safe and improved school to continue their studies.”
Jonina Campbell, board chair, New Westminster school district –
“We welcome the support for seismic mitigation at F.W. Howay Elementary school as a high priority project that will ensure our students are learning in a safe and secure environment. This work is part of our comprehensive capital project planning for schools and facilities throughout the New Westminster school district supporting high standard, safe, and quality learning environments for all our children.”
- The F.W. Howay Elementary school was built in 1961 and then rebuilt in 1974 after burning to the ground in a 1972 fire.
- Including the F.W. Howay Elementary project, government has invested over $159 million on capital and seismic projects in New Westminster since 2011.
New Westminster school district (SD 40): http://district.sd40.bc.ca/
For more information about the Ministry of Education’s Seismic Mitigation Program: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/capitalplanning/seismic/
B.C.’s new curriculum: https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/