Esquimalt to begin construction of new $42M public safety building

Esquimalt to begin construction of new $42M public safety building
A rendering of the new Public Safety Building in Esquimalt is shown. (Township of Esquimalt)

Construction of a new public safety building in Esquimalt is finally set to begin, after years of delays and revamps.

The mayor, council and fire department officially broke ground on the new service building on Wednesday, with plans for construction to kick off next week.

The new three-storey public safety building, located at 500 Park Pl., will be home the district’s Emergency Operations Centre, fire department, training facility for local firefighters and will have space for Capital Regional District offices.

Its main entrance will also include “pedestrian-friendly” upgrades that will be in line with the nearby Town Square plaza.

A rendering of the new fire hall at the Public Safety Building in Esquimalt is shown. (Township of Esquimalt)

The project is years in the making, after seeing delays from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The township says construction costs have ballooned since then, so the municipality decided to reduce the scope of the project in July 2023 to keep the building’s cost in line with its budget.

The revamped design went to tender in March, and a construction contract was officially awarded last week.

The overall budget is estimated to cost $42 million. That cost includes construction of the new building, as well as demolition and abatement of the old public safety building.

It also includes the construction of a temporary fire hall and renovations to interim police facilities.

The township adds that roughly one third of the project cost is related to needs other than construction of the new building itself.

“Naturally, our fire department will be growing, we can anticipate that over the years,” said Esquimalt Fire Chief Matt Furlot on Wednesday.

“We’ve outgrown our previous fire station, we are stuffed into our temporary fire station and so we need this new building – the community needs this new building – and it will allow us to grow and meet the needs of the community,” he told CHEK News .

Construction is scheduled to start on May 27 with a target of opening in fall 2026.

SEE ALSO: Esquimalt takes another step towards creating its own police force

With files from CHEK’s Mackenzie Read

Firefighters look at renderings of the new Esquimalt Public Safety Building. May 22, 2024 (CHEK News)

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