Image of the Ballroom (speaker setup) at Vancouver Island Conference Centre

Press Release

June 23, 2006 – Vancouver Island Conference Centre – Official Launch of Construction

(Nanaimo, British Columbia) – The City of Nanaimo and its partners Millennium and Triarc International are pleased to announce the start of foundation construction on the Vancouver Island Conference Centre (VICC).

Site preparation is proceeding on schedule. The site preparation contractors have completed a process of soil compaction and are now well underway with the soil mixing process. This process involves building underground walls (made with soil and cement) to strengthen and stabilize the soils. The site preparation contractor has been focusing on the northwest portion of the site so this portion of the site can be turned over to the general contractor, Intertech Construction (ITC) to allow for the start of foundation construction.

“Today’s event is a milestone in the hard work of past and present councils to bring a conference centre to Nanaimo. Looking forward, Nanaimo is entering into exciting times. The Vancouver Island Conference Centre marks the beginning of a great future for our city adding a dynamic vibrancy and vigour that already makes Nanaimo one of the best places in North America to live, work and play” says Mayor Gary Korpan.

“The Vancouver Island Conference Centre is a great boost to the economy of Nanaimo and Central Vancouver Island, and is going to ignite the tourism sector in particular,” said Premier Gordon Campbell. “The start of construction brings the community one step closer to realizing its vision for Nanaimo's economic future, and the Province is proud to be a partner in making it happen.”

“Having a facility to hold national and international events and conferences will provide significant economic benefits to the City of Nanaimo and surrounding communities,” said James Lunney, Member of Parliament for Nanaimo-Alberni, on behalf of the Honourable Carol Skelton, Minister of National Revenue and Minister of Western Economic Diversification. “This initiative is an example of how commitment and collaboration amongst all levels of government through the Canada - British Columbia Infrastructure Program develop prosperous and healthy communities.”

Rapid progress and visual changes will be occurring on the site over the next year, including the building of the two level parkade adjacent to the Vancouver Island Regional Library, as well as the steel supports of the Shaw Auditorium. Major construction is expected to be complete by spring 2008, followed by the interior outfitting. The City’s development partner, Millennium/Triarc continues to work on the planning and design of the hotel and condominium tower on Gordon Street.

As chair of the conference centre committee, Councillor Jeet Manhas “[is] very proud to see the hard work of this community finally culminate with the commencement of the construction of the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. A new chapter in Nanaimo is about to open; supporting and providing new economic opportunities for Nanaimo and Vancouver Island, creating employment opportunities, diversifying and strengthening our economy.”

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