City council voted in May 2017 to move forward with replacement of the fire hall at 666 Fitzwilliam St. NEWS BULLETIN file photo

City could seek alternative approval for $17M to replace fire hall

Nanaimo councillors to vote next week on proceeding with alternative approval process

  • Feb. 13, 2018 12:00 a.m.

Nanaimo city council could take further steps next week toward the replacement of the No. 1 fire hall.

The City of Nanaimo released the agenda for its Feb. 19 meeting, when city councillors will vote on introducing a bylaw to borrow up to $17 million, and will also vote on proceeding with an alternative approval process around borrowing that sum.

City council voted in May 2017 to move forward with replacement of the fire hall at 666 Fitzwilliam St.

According to a staff report dated Feb. 19, Nanaimo Fire Rescue’s fire station No. 1, built in 1966, houses the city’s main emergency response centre, emergency co-ordination centre and dispatch centre. It doesn’t meet B.C. Building Code seismic standards and “mechanical and other systems are past their useful life.”

Staff recommend that the alternative approval process take place between April 3 and May 4. If fewer than 10 per cent of eligible voters oppose the borrowing bylaw, council would be able to proceed with bylaw adoption. If more than 10 per cent oppose the bylaw, the question would have to be put to a referendum to proceed.

The staff report notes that the No. 1 fire hall will be “the first major project that will be implemented utilizing guidance of the recommendations from the Deloitte Report.” The report identified concerns and made recommendations about certain city functions including project planning.

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