College to become your potential landlord
By Atiba Nelson, Staff Reporter
Ever dreamed of taking the elevator down to the cafeteria, then walking to your morning class while in your pajamas—having just rolled out of bed? Your dreams may become a reality sooner than you think.
Douglas College via the British Columbia Bid website, posted a document entitled “Request for Proposals for Prime Consulting Services.” The request asks prospective bidders to submit a proposal for the “provision of Prime Consultant Services for the design, construction, and occupancy of a new campus academic building with an integrated student housing building.”
The college is aiming to have presentations and interviews with prospective applicants in mid-June and award the contract for the planning, development, and construction of the new Douglas College building by June 19.
The student housing building is slated to be built at 808 Royal Avenue. The site is described as the land that is bordered by Royal Avenue, 8th Street, Agnes Street, and Blackie Street. Currently, this site is used for surface parking across the street from Douglas’ New Westminster campus.
According to the proposal, Douglas envisions the building being multiuse. The college’s desire is for the newly constructed tower to hold a mix of classrooms, computer and simulation labs, facility offices, study spaces, a student lounge area that could accommodate roughly 160 students, plus a dining venue to provide food services to the occupants.
The housing building—which should have wonderful views of downtown New Westminster and the Fraser River— will be linked to the academic building and provide the college with 350 beds, which will either be single occupancy units or a mix of housing units.
Plans for student-only housing at the Douglas College New Westminster campus have been in consideration for two years. The cost to the college is estimated to be $110.7 million dollars—according to a cost estimate generated by LEC Group Quantity Surveyors in June 2019.
There is also a plan to increase parking at the New Westminster campus and the building will feature student and facility stalls, as per New Westminster by-laws, underneath the structure.
Douglas’ student housing building at the New Westminster campus is scheduled to be occupied in 2024, according to a project schedule timeline.
Currently there are no plans for the college to erect student housing at the Douglas’ Coquitlam campus.