James Munson/Yukon News file Work to build a new health centre in Old Crow has been contracted out to Stantec.

New health centre, housing complex planned for Old Crow

Plans are at a preliminary stage, the minister says

Stantec has been awarded the owner’s advisor contract for a new health centre in Old Crow.

“The owner’s advisor is a consultant group that provides early planning, estimates, and technical oversight on behalf of the owner (in this case the Yukon government) for the duration of a project,” said cabinet spokesperson Matthew Cameron.

Once completed, Old Crow will see services centralized, said Pauline Frost, minister of health and social services.

“We’re looking at providing health care services like, say, physiotherapists that can come in on a regular basis, a dentist that can come in on a regular basis,” she said. “(We’re) looking at bringing in more educational opportunities, more teaching opportunities, more preventative measures. We need a facility in which we can deliver those services.”

The plan is in a conceptual phase, she said, adding that there will be a final plan that seeks to address the fly-in community’s needs.

“This current health centre doesn’t have the ability for us to bring in a dentist, bring in, say, a therapist, that kind of stuff,” Frost said. “We have to use facilities across the community. It’s just a collaborative model and working with the community to address its core needs.”

Currently, there’s a resident registered nurse in the community and a doctor who make scheduled visits every few weeks, she added.

The facility there now was built in the early 1970s.

The budget for the health centre is included in the government’s five-year capital plan. It could amount to roughly $25 million, maximum.

Ancillary to the project is a plan for a “mixed-use” housing complex, complete with 10 units that would be separate from the health centre (the one there now currently houses medical staff.)

“Half for staff, half for community housing needs,” Frost said, when asked who would be able to access the apartments.

She suggested staff would be prioritized, but that more discussions need to occur with community leaders in order to determine housing needs more generally.

“We currently need facilities for the nurses,” she said. “We have other professionals in the community right now that we need to stabilize housing for.”

The budget for this work is roughly $10 million, tops.

Stantec has also been awarded the contract for that project.

A winter road will need to be built, come 2021, in order to ship in supplies for these projects to the community, according to a government news release.

Contact Julien Gignac at julien.gignac@yukon-news.com

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated Stantec was charged with building the health centre. Stantec has been made an advisor but the construction contract has not been awarded yet. We regret the error.

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