5025 WILLOW STREET BC V5Z 3S1
VSB is working to ensure all students attend seismically safe schools as quickly as possible. We are protecting our students and minimizing potential damages that may happen in the unfortunate event of an earthquake.
In June 2018, the provincial government announced funding for the replacement of Eric Hamber Secondary School. The Ministry of Education allocated $79.3 million to fully replace Hamber Secondary. This will be the largest seismic project in Vancouver’s history and the second-largest school construction project in the province.
The existing school has served students and the neighbouring community well since 1962, but the facility does not meet current seismic standards and presents a high-seismic risk in the event of an earthquake. The new school will have room for up to 1,700 students and will be designed to meet today’s standards for modern learning.
We are commited to preserving the integrity of Eric Hamber while ensuring a safe future throught the following project values.
Hamber Secondary School was approved for provincial funding to build a replacement school as part of the Ministry of Education’s Seismic Mitigation Program in June 2018. Now that a preliminary design is complete, the project team has conducted a technical budget review as part of standard project procedures. Following the review, the estimate at this time is that the current budget may not be sufficient for the project as originally approved.
The current budget was developed and approved more than one-year ago. Costs have escalated significantly over the past 12 months as construction prices continue to rise. This is not a unique situation to Hamber. The cost pressures we are facing today are no different from the ones experienced by other construction projects. To be clear, this is about the base design of the replacement school as originally approved; not costs that would be associated with an additional auditorium.
The Vancouver Project Office Steering Committee (comprised of staff from the Ministry of Education and the District) has discussed options on how to continue to move the seismic project forward. The Steering Committee agreed to make a request to the Ministry of Education that funding be provided to cover recently revised cost estimates. Again, this additional funding request is to cover the originally approved base-design; it does not address additional funding to add an auditorium to the project.
The Board and District staff are working to ensure sufficient funding is in place for the project, as originally approved. The Board of Education recently requested additional funding for the project from the Ministry of Education as well as the City of Vancouver, which reflects the expressed desires of the Hamber school community.
What We’ve Heard
We are committed to working with the school community to design a replacement school that meets the needs of the students while minimizing construction impacts. Your feedback matters!
We have formed a School Advisory Group (SAG) with representatives from parents, students and teachers who provide input as the project progresses. The group has already participated in site tours, visioning sessions and multiple focus group sessions to help gain a better understanding of the needs and requirements of the school community. The SAG will continue to meet on a regular basis.
Additionally, a Public Information Session was held on January 11, 2019. Display boards from this information session can be found here. Feedback was received online from January 11, 2019 to January 25, 2019. Read the summary report here.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We understand there are many questions and concerns about the Hamber replacement school. We've heard from the school community and as a result developed a compressive list of FAQs, anywhere from funding, to future school capacity and the size of the school. Click here to see the full list of questions and answers.
Parents and staff may direct questions to the Principal, who is a member of the seismic project team. The principal’s contact information can be found here.