Construction begins on BCIT's new $78-million Health Sciences Centre

Dec 3 2019, 8:40 pm

Construction officially began today on the largest addition to British Columbia Institute of Technology’s (BCIT) sprawling Burnaby campus since the 1990s, and the first building project since the completion of the SW01 Gateway Building early this decade.

The post-secondary institution is building a new Health Sciences Centre, which will be one of the largest centres in Canada for health simulation training, replicating a variety of hospital and laboratory settings.

According to a release, the new centre consolidates a number of BCIT’s health sciences programs, including nursing, cardiology, sonography, pediatric, and nuclear medicine.

Such post-secondary training facilities will help meet the high demand for healthcare professions in the province, with labour market forecasts indicating 82,000 job openings by 2028.

bcit health sciences centre

Artistic rendering of BCIT Health Sciences Centre. (Stantec Archtiecture / BCIT)

bcit health sciences centre

Artistic rendering of BCIT Health Sciences Centre. (Stantec Archtiecture / BCIT)

This four-storey building with 107,000 sq. ft. of total floor area will provide efficient, flexible, and innovative learning spaces for about 7,000 full-time and part-time students.

“The new BCIT Health Sciences Centre is a bold declaration of our ongoing commitment to training the professionals that support British Columbia’s vital health-care sector,” said Kathy Kinloch, president of BCIT, in a statement, adding that the new facilities feature simulation laboratories equipped with the latest virtual and augmented reality technology.

The project carries a construction cost of $78.3 million, with the provincial government providing $66.6 million and the remainder from BCIT’s INSPIRE Campaign.

“Through our INSPIRE fundraising campaign, we are committed to future‐proofing applied education as we transform our infrastructure at BCIT,” said David Podmore, INSPIRE Campaign chair, and Concert Properties co-founder and chair.

“This new Health Sciences Centre is tangible proof of that commitment and of the generous support of our government and our community.”

bcit health sciences centre

Artistic rendering of BCIT Health Sciences Centre. (Stantec Archtiecture / BCIT)

Stantec Architecture is behind the design of the new centre. As a net-zero carbon emission building and with a WELL Gold certification, it will be the most sustainable building at the campus upon completion by late 2021.

An underground level will provide 60 vehicle parking stalls, with all stalls outfitted with electric-battery vehicle charging stations.

The new building will be located within the northwest quadrant of the campus — on a vacant site framed by Willingdon Avenue to the west, the NW1 building to the north, English Street to the east, and Goard Way to the south. It is a key component of BCIT’s campus plan of creating a major visual gateway into the campus from the main entrance on Goard Way, which acts as the central campus spine.

Extensive public realm improvements are incorporated into the project scope.

bcit health sciences centre

Site of BCIT Health Sciences Centre. (Stantec Archtiecture / BCIT)

bcit health sciences centre

Concept of the public realm improvements as part of BCIT Health Sciences Centre. (Stantec Archtiecture / BCIT)