Construction on the new Cold Lake Lodge has officially been set in motion.
“I’m so excited because we fought so long and so hard. Hats off to this board who stuck together through thick and thin to get this project going,” said Ray Prevost, chair of the Lakeland Lodge and Housing Board.
Months after the bid process closed, last week the Lakeland Lodge and Housing Board signed a contract with Seko Construction for the lodge project. The winning bid, which came in at just under $13.34 million, was one of 12 full tenders submitted by contractors at the end of 2015.
“We’re really happy the contract letter was submitted and signed so it’s officially now with Seko Construction. We’re really excited and hoping to see some activity soon on the site,” said Chris Vining vice-chair of the Lakeland Lodge and Housing Board. “It came in at a little better price then we originally anticipated for.”
Crews are expected to start work on the new 61-room senior citizens lodge within the next six weeks. It’s welcome news for the board, who have been working on getting the project to become a reality for years. In late 2013, the government awarded $6.8 million in funding to the lodge as part of a $47 million commitment from the federal and provincial government to construct five projects for low-income seniors.
The new lodge will be replacing the existing facility on 12th Street, which is just 48-rooms. Larger rooms will house residents, instead of the current 110-square foot rooms seniors are currently living in.
While they don’t have a date for ground breaking just yet, Vining said they are planning on hosting an open house in mid-February to unveil the project to the community and show some mock-ups of the building.
“There’s a demolition that has to take place first and quite a bit of groundwork that has to be done over there, so the actual construction of it will start later, probably in the summer,” explained Prevost.
Edmonton-based Seko Construction is well known in the area. Having built similar senior citizens facilities in Alberta and British Columbia, the company is also responsible for the new radiology clinic in Cold Lake.
“Everything from what we heard was very positive and Seko has some very good experience in the past with (constructing) buildings like these both in Alberta and B.C. We’re really excited that we’ve got an outfit that has experience building these types of facilities,” said Vining.
They’re hoping to have construction complete, and seniors moving into the new Cold Lake Lodge by mid- to late-2018. While it’s been a lot of work for the local committee, Prevost expressed that seeing it all come together is their reward.
“It’s been a long hard road but it’s well worth it. It’s a need, not a want, I’ve said that many times before. It’s time that we provide some accommodations for seniors that have given us so much in the past.”