Canadian Rangers will be getting a new headquarters in Yellowknife, but it will take several years.

The Department of National Defence (DND) recently outlined plans to build a 82,000-square-foot facility in Yellowknife.

The building will serve as the headquarters for the 1st Canadian Rangers Patrol Group, which encompasses Rangers in the NWT, Nunavut and the Yukon.

The facility is expected to open in 2024 with the construction beginning in as early as 2020.

The initiative is still in early planning stages and therefore a lot of details surrounding the building, such as where it will be located, are still unclear, stated Andrew McKelvey, media relations officer for the department, in an email.

“This new facility will replace the current leased facility in Yellowknife,” McKelvey stated. “With all projects like this, the goal is to help maximize the employment opportunities available to the local community while providing the women and men in the Canadian Armed Forces the facilities and equipment they need to do their jobs.”

The technical services provided through the new headquarters will include supply and material management, vehicle maintenance, transport and traffic, stated McKelvey.

“While it is too soon to know what, if any, effect this new facility will have on recruitment, the Canadian Armed Forces continues to work to expand and deepen extensive relationships with Indigenous communities across the North,” McKelvey said.

The new headquarters announcement came at the same time the department revealed that it’s close to launching the first of six offshore Arctic patrol ships. Last April, the federal government announced that it would outfit the Rangers with .308-calibre C19 rifles to replace the Lee Enfield rifles in service for the past 71 years.

The 1st Canadian Ranger Patrol group consists of close to 1,800 Rangers in 60 patrols across the three territories.

According to the DND’s website, the Rangers “provide lightly equipped, self-sufficient, mobile forces in support of Canadian Forces sovereignty and domestic operation tasks in Canada.”

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