Legislature waits for school seismic upgrades

The B.C. legislature doesn't meet building code standards for fire and seismic protection

VICTORIA – Ministers headed into their first cabinet meeting with Premier Christy Clark Wednesday, well aware that the stately limestone legislature needs major repairs and is a deathtrap in a major earthquake.

This week the B.C. government finally released a 2006 study on the state of the legislative buildings. It confirms that there is no comprehensive plan to maintain and strengthen the legislature and other buildings on the grounds, built in the late 19th century.

The report notes that despite upgrades in the 1970s and 1980s, the legislature does not meet B.C. building codes related to earthquake and fire risk. It says the copper roof domes are “in poor condition,” and parts of the building such as parapet caps, roofing and glazing are “failing.”

The report estimated the cost of repairs at more than $140 million, with millions more to upgrade adjacent buildings known as the armouries, premier’s garage and bunker.

Shirley Bond, named this week at public safety minister, said the legislature precinct is the responsibility of Speaker Bill Barisoff. Barisoff has said the public expects the B.C. government to complete its seismic upgrades of schools around the province before major work is done at the legislature.

The education ministry is in the midst of a 15-year, $1.5 billion program to upgrade school structures.

Its latest progress report shows that 90 projects are complete, mainly in the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island. Another 21 are under construction, with 10 more projects preparing to start.

Just Posted

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

Battle of the Bands winner set to perform at Char’s Landing

Sean Lyons is a singer-songwriter originally from Port Alberni

Port Alberni sends large contingent of athletes to Special Olympics Winter Games

Veteran curler Simone Myers dreams of gold in her seventh provincials

Steelhead LNG stops work on Kwispaa LNG project near Bamfield

Huu-ay-aht First Nations ‘deeply disappointed; Steelhead says funding is the problem

West coast group campaigns for seal, sea lion harvest

‘Salmon are going the way of the buffalo unless we do something’

Mermen calendar targets ‘toxic masculinity,’ raises big money for charities

Newfoundland and Labrador Beard and Moustache Club gave a cheque for more than $202,000 to Violence Prevention NL

‘Bullet missed me by an inch’: Man recounts friend’s killing at Kamloops hotel

Penticton man witnessed Summerland resident Rex Gill’s murder in Kamloops

B.C. BUDGET: Income assistance raise still leaves many below poverty line

$50 per month increase included in funding for poverty and homelessness reduction

B.C. BUDGET: Indigenous communities promised billions from gambling

Extended family caregiver pay up 75 per cent to keep kids with relatives

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

B.C. BUDGET: Carbon tax boosts low-income credits, electric vehicle subsidies

Homeowners can get up to $14,000 for heating, insulation upgrades

B.C. man survives heart attack thanks to Facebook

A Princeton man suffered a heart attack while at an isolated property with no cell service

B.C. man sues Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party over trademark

Satinder Dhillon filed application for trademark same day Maxime Bernier announced the new party

New trial ordered over banning whales, dolphins at Vancouver aquarium

Park board’s appeal reverses previous decision that found it had no right to implement a ban

Most Read