NPA School Board Trustees Lisa Dominato and Fraser Ballantyne support the building of two new schools in Vancouver’s West End

June 25, 2018, Vancouver, B.C. – On June 25th, the Vancouver School Board (VSB) voted 6 to 2 in favour of entering into an agreement with BC Hydro for an underground electrical substation at the Lord Roberts Annex site, enabling the district to build a much needed school at Coal Harbour sooner and a replacement K-7 school at the Lord Roberts Annex site.

The West End is in desperate need of an additional school to meet growing student demand. Enrolment projections show the student population will grow significantly over the next 10 years and current schools are at near capacity.

“There is a critical need for another school in the West End and this agreement will enable us to move ahead with this project sooner so we can meet the educational needs of current and future families,” said Dominato. “The Minister of Education has been clear that the Province does not intend to fund this project any time soon.”

Dominato confirmed in last week’s Planning and Facilities Committee meeting on this matter that the City of Vancouver is committed to the Coal Harbour development as part of the upcoming capital plan, which will include the new school, day care, and social housing. The Coal Harbour school would open in 2023 as part of this development.

The two new schools will be funded from compensation generated from the sale of a subsurface air parcel that will be used for an underground electrical substation needed to meet the West End and downtown power needs.

“By finding an alternative funding source for these West End schools, it makes a compelling business case for the Ministry of Education to fund other local priorities like King George Secondary, Olympic Village, and ongoing seismic needs within the district,” said Ballantyne.

The 2017 Stantec study, and an independent review by Vancouver Coastal Health, concluded there are no significant health and safety issues. BC Hydro has committed to a number of mitigation measures to address the public’s concerns about safety, construction disruption, and maintenance of green space. For more information, please see the following:

https://www.bchydro.com/energy-in-bc/projects/west-end-substation.html

http://www.vsb.bc.ca/hydro_proposal_2018

Contact: media@npavancouver.ca