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Work begins on Marine Atlantic building

Backhoes tear into the soil as work gets underway on Marine Atlantic’s new Port aux Basques administration building. – © René J. Roy / Wreckhouse Press Inc.

By ROSALYN ROY

PORT AUX BASQUES — Three years after it was announced, construction has begun on Marine Atlantic’s new administration building. Located on Hardy’s Arterial across from the Bruce II Sports Centre, the new building will allow the Crown corporation to consolidate all of its local operations and about 60 to 70 employees under one roof.

“The building will help address current space and infrastructure challenges and consolidate administrative functions in the town,” confirmed Darrell Mercer, Corporate Communications Officer for Marine Atlantic, via e-mail.

The tender package for this first stage of the project has been awarded to Bursey’s Excavating, which will undertake activities such as blasting, digging and grading to help with overall site preparation. That work is expected to be completed this Fall.

Assuming COVID protocols allow, Marine Atlantic hopes to host a public information session. Construction on physical structure is intended to be completed externally in Winter 2022, after which work will carry on within the interior. That design has changed a bit thanks to COVID-19, something noted by CEO & President Murray Hupman back in April.

The only other administrative building Marine Atlantic owns that is not located at the PAB terminal is located at 10 Marine Drive. Mercer wrote that as yet, no decision has been made as to its future.

“Additional tenders will be issued with the building tentatively scheduled to open in the 2023-24 fiscal year.”

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