Equipment and cranes at the new Mills Memorial Hospital worksite in Terrace, on Dec. 3, 2021. (Ben Bogstie/Terrace Standard)

Equipment and cranes at the new Mills Memorial Hospital worksite in Terrace, on Dec. 3, 2021. (Ben Bogstie/Terrace Standard)

New Mills to be ready in September 2024

Construction budget of $622.6 million remains on track

Substantial completion of the new Mills Memorial Hospital is set for September 19, 2024 with the new Seven Sisters mental health residential facility to be completed in March of that year, indicates a Northern Health Authority report from mid-November.

Demolition of the current Seven Sisters structure is to take place in April 2024 but it won’t be until January 2025 that demolition of the current Mills will start, a project that will take until November 2025, the report adds.

Full site redevelopment and completion will begin in August 2025 with a completion in July 2026.

The report indicates interior finishes of the new Mills will begin in the basement in June 2022 with similar work on the building’s four levels beginning with the first level in August 2022 stretching into November 2023 for a start on the fourth and final level.

So far, the report indicates, the $622.6 million price tag revealed earlier this year is holding.

“The overall project is targeted to be substantially complete on or before July 8, 2026,” the report continues of what is to date the largest and most expensive health care project to be built in northern B.C.

“The schedule is on track and meets the terms of the contract at the current time.”

Construction began this summer with a final design yet to be decided upon but, says the report, a final and complete design submission is to be submitted to the province and Northern Health two days before Christmas on Dec. 23.

For the first time a list of contracts let by main contractor PCL or its own subcontractors has been released. It numbers 62 companies consisting of a mixture of local enterprises and ones from outside the area.

The number of people working on the project, which does vary depending upon what is required at any particular time, was not included nor were any dollar values of the contracts listed.

To date, the project has required the services of companies ranging from arborists to heavy equipment providers to electrical contractors to crane providers to building supplies to security.

The list includes the Northwest Regional Airport from which workers are flown in or out on shift rotations and Pinion, the Alberta camp provider which has built PCL’s work camp housing several hundred people on property leased from the Kitsumkalum First Nation.

The new Seven Sisters will have 25 beds, up from the 20 at the current facility while the new Mills will have 78 beds, nearly double the 44 at the current hospital.

When finished, the new Mills will become a northwestern centre for trauma services, orthopedic surgeries and psychiatric care as well as continuing to function as a training location for medical students.