Getting ready to start building the new JdFEA services building off Otter Point Road are

The shovel is in the dirt

New Juan de Fuca services building started on Otter Point Road

It all started out with a drawing on a napkin and now it’s official and it is set to get rolling immediately. The new $1.5-million, 4,500 sq. ft. Juan de Fuca services building should be complete by the end of October.

The idea of the new services building was floated around in 2012 and in November the Capital Regional District authorized a loan of $1.5-million to build the structure on three lots in the industrial park on Otter Point Road, next to the 16-acre William Simmons Park.

“Mike is so excited,” said Robert Gutierrez, CRD Chief Building Inspector and project manager.

“It all started in September,” said Mike Hicks, Juan de Fuca Electoral Area Regional Director. “I took my napkin drawing to Randy Clarkston and that (result) went to Doran to spruce it up and then to the CRD for funding and now here we are.”

Doran Musgrove is the CRD architect for the project.

Hicks came up with the idea of building when he realized how much they were paying for rent. They paid $117,000 per year along with $17,000 in utilities. The building has been sold and their lease runs out on December 31, 2013. He quickly came to the conclusion that borrowing and building would be cheaper for the taxpayers in the long run.

Hicks said they are moving in on December 1 of this year.

Construction will finish in October and November will be spent catching up with deficiencies, which may or may not be there,” said Gutierrez.

Verity Developments Ltd., from Langford, will be constructing the building. The building was tendered out at 80 per cent ($781,000) so they would have what they absolutely needed to make the move.

“It’s enough to complete it on time and on budget,” said Hicks. “It’s probably the only office building in the JdF.”

Hicks said the building they are presently renting on West Coast Road is inadequate. They had to use the Sooke council chambers and the downstairs of the Sooke Community Hall when larger spaces were required for public meetings. They did build a small room in the existing building.

Hicks thinks the new services building will be a good place for the community to get together for activities such as karate, pilates and other recreation programs, which Hicks said the JdF pays $50,000 for. The building will have an 80-seat meeting room, 10 offices, a lobby and kitchen.

The building will also utilize as much green technology and initiatives as possible.