A new headquarters for the Canadian Rangers is expected to be ready in the Engle Business District in the winter of 2024-25, however the building hasn’t been started yet, as initially planned.
“There have been some delays due to site work taking longer than anticipated, as well as some delays due to Covid-19,” stated Jessica Lamirande, senior communications officer with the federal Department of National Defence. “Construction is now estimated to start in spring 2022 and be completed in winter 2024-2025.
The estimated project budget is up to $86 million overall, she said.
The Rangers bought three lots in the business district in February 2019 for $1,352,500 (+ GST), according to Lamirande.
Lamirande said the new facility will feature office and classroom space and room for training purposes. It will also include an assembly area that will double as a drill hall and additional space for vehicle maintenance and storage.
There’s currently no active headquarters building for the Rangers so they are operating out of temporary, leased facilities in different locations in Yellowknife, according to Lamirande.
The 1st Canadian Ranger Patrol group consists of close to 1,800 Rangers in 60 patrols across the three territories.
Lamirande said that much preparation work has been done to date, having started in the fall of 2019. That work is expected to wrap up this coming summer.
Between October 2019 and February 2020, Arctic Farmer Inc. was contracted for tree-cutting on the site at a cost of $176,000.
North Country Logistics Ltd also received a site grading contract in July 2020 for $3.6 million.
Both contracts Indigenous companies were able to bid on those two contracts as per the federal Procurement Strategy for Aboriginal Business (PSAB).
“The site work is underway with an expected completion date of late summer 2021,” Lamirande stated.
DND purchased property from the City of Yellowknife in the Engle Business District off of Deh Cho Boulevard.
PCL Construction Management of Edmonton was awarded the design contract for $1.8 million in November, Lamirande said. The company will be responsible for designing the building as well as drafting construction documents.
“Following the design work, the construction work to build the facility may be negotiated into the contract with the same firm,” Lamirande stated.