Construction work is set to begin on the Health and Wellness Centre and 10-plex housing complex in Old Crow.
The first phase of construction is site preparation, which includes clearing and grubbing the site, and putting in a gravel pad. Later this year, thermopiles for the foundation will be shipped by air to be drilled and installed over the winter. Work on the building structure itself will start next spring.
Planning for these facilities has been underway for several years. Engagement with the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation included negotiation of a long-term land lease agreement to build and operate the two facilities on Settlement Land.
The 10-plex is scheduled to be complete in late 2022 and the Health and Wellness Centre will be completed by late 2023.
Investments like the Old Crow Health and Wellness Centre and 10-plex housing unit project are ways our government is building healthy, vibrant communities. These projects not only add to the modern housing continuum and replace Old Crow’s aging health centre, they also create jobs. I look forward to seeing this important work, complete with a passive thermopile foundation system, forge ahead.
Minister of Highways and Public Works Nils Clarke
The Government of Yukon is pleased to be moving forward with the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation on the Old Crow Health and Wellness Centre and 10-plex housing unit project. These are long overdue projects that will improve the services in the community of Old Crow. The co-location of both health and wellness-related services in the new centre is an important innovation. This complex will support the recommendations of the Putting People First report by focusing on more holistic, whole-person care with integrated, interdisciplinary teams.
Minister of Health and Social Services Tracy-Anne McPhee
The Old Crow 10-plex is a significant investment in housing in the Old Crow community. Designed as a mixed-use building, this project will enable us to respond to changing housing needs in the community. Supporting the vision and objectives of the Housing Action Plan and Aging in Place Action Plan, this project demonstrates collaboration between different levels of government to address community needs in the Yukon. This project will also boost the Yukon’s economy and generate construction jobs. We are excited to see families and individuals get access to safe, affordable homes and improve their quality of life.
Minister responsible for the Yukon Housing Corporation Ranj Pillai
These long-awaited buildings will have a significant impact on our community’s health and wellness, and our current housing shortage. The first phase of construction is an exciting milestone for our Government and our people. We are eagerly anticipating the overdue replacement of our health centre, built in the 1970s. The new centre will facilitate a collaborative approach to health and social needs, while the 10-unit housing complex will help provide other housing that will change lives in Old Crow.
Vuntut Gwitchin Government Chief Dana Tizya-Tramm
This project means more than bricks and mortar to Ketza TSL Construction Ltd; the healthy development of our communities is so vital. A Health and Wellness Centre and 10-plex in Old Crow will not only benefit families now, but future generations and we are grateful to be part of the team for this impactful investment in the community.
Ketza TSL Construction Ltd. General Manager Eric Brohman
The design-build contract for the project was awarded to Ketza TSL Construction in March 2021 for $44.8 million.
A number of steel thermopiles are drilled into the ground to carry a building’s structural load while also extracting heat during cold winter months. This helps to keep the soil frozen, minimizing impacts to permafrost and providing structural integrity where typical concrete or similar horizontal footings are not feasible.
The Health and Wellness Centre is the first to be designed and constructed based on a generic functional program developed by the departments of Health and Social Services and Highways and Public Works for smaller Yukon communities. It will provide healthcare services including homecare, mental health, social services, dental care, telehealth and emergency care.