Sept. 24, 2009
REXTON (CNB) - An agreement between the province and a private-sector proponent to design, build, operate and maintain new schools in Rexton and Moncton North has been finalized. Premier Shawn Graham made the announcement at an event in Rexton on Wednesday, Sept. 23.
"The development of modern facilities that inspire learning and innovation is a critical step in building the best educational system in the country," said Graham. "I'm very pleased that our government, in partnership with Brunswick Learning Centres Inc. is able to provide the students of these two schools with a high-quality environment that facilitates the achievement of their educational goals."
The estimated combined capital cost of both projects is $40 million. Design and construction will be managed by Bird Design-Build Ltd. of Saint John.
"Strategic infrastructure investments are an important means of stimulating our economy during these tough economic times, and it's great to see the work at this site beginning immediately," said Graham. "The $40 million that will be spent on the construction of these two schools is above and beyond the $1.2 billion that our government has already committed to spending on key infrastructure projects over the next two years, and will generate additional economic activity and employment opportunities here in New Brunswick."
The agreement involves the sale of school properties on Ryan Road in Moncton, and Albany Road in Rexton, to the developer for $1.3 million. Brunswick Learning Centres Inc. will lease the facilities back to the province for $7 million per year. The lease fee includes all costs associated with the two facilities, including taxes, energy costs and maintenance. It is estimated that the agreement will result in savings to government of about $12 million (net present value) over the 30-year lease term.
As part of the government's Green Buildings Program, both schools have been designed to achieve a silver rating under the principles of Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED), a rating system used to measure green building performance in Canada.
Supply and Services Minister Ed Doherty participated in the announcement, and described the facilities as innovative.
"As part of the government's Climate Change Action Plan we are committed to reducing the carbon footprint of our buildings, and these two facilities embrace that approach," said Doherty. "We have collaborated with the developer to ensure that their construction methods, materials, site preparation and the features of the buildings themselves are environmentally friendly."
The Eleanor W. Graham Middle School in Rexton will be about 5,574 sq. metres (60,000 sq. feet) in size, and will accommodate 300 students. It will include: 13 classrooms; three resource teaching rooms; a resource centre; a music room; a technology education room; a science room; a visual arts room; a computer room; a cafeteria and kitchen; and a native cultural centre. The community has made a contribution of $100,000 toward construction of a larger gymnasium.
The new school in Moncton North will be about 10,219 sq. metres (110,000 sq. feet) in size, and will accommodate 650 students from kindergarten to Grade 8. The school will include: 27 classrooms; a literacy support room; a resource centre; a technology education room; a cafeteria and kitchen; a science room; two gymnasiums; two music rooms; two visual arts rooms; two resource teaching rooms; and three team teaching rooms.
Construction of the Eleanor W. Graham Middle School will begin immediately, and is scheduled to be open for the fall term of the 2010-11 school year. A municipal re-zoning of the Moncton school property is still pending, so construction of Moncton North school is anticipated to begin later this fall. The facility should be open for the winter term of the 2010-11 school year.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Marie-Andrée Bolduc, Office of the Premier, 506-444-2286; Chrystiane Mallaley, communications, Department of Supply and Services, 506-476-0867.