A new purpose-built research and storage facility in Colwood will house Royal BC Museum’s collections and archives. The B.C. government expects the project to break ground in winter 2021 and to be complete in summer 2024.
The 3.2-hectare (eight acre) piece of land at the Royal Bay development in Colwood will include a new approximately 14,000 square-metre facility. It will use mass timber construction and meet CleanBC energy efficiency standards.
In October, crews will begin preparing the site for construction, including surveying and earthworks. The government will undertake a competitive procurement process in the coming months to select a design-build team to lead the development of the project.
“We are taking the first major step to modernize the Royal BC Museum,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. “Our government is building a state-of-the-art facility to preserve our history for future generations. This construction project will create jobs for people on Vancouver Island and help support B.C.’s economic recovery.”
The proposed facility will house the Royal BC Museum’s archives, collections and research department. It will improve research activities by providing dedicated research labs and learning spaces. It will also improve access to the museum’s vast collections. The new building will offer learning opportunities for students, both in person and online.
Project funding details will be released upon successful execution of the contract with the successful bidder.
This is the first phase of the Royal BC Museum modernization project. The main museum and public galleries will remain at the downtown site in Victoria. The B.C. government is committed to redeveloping the museum space downtown and will announce plans in 2021.
“We are thankful to the province for delivering on its commitment to modernize the Royal BC Museum,” said Daniel Muzyka, board chair of the museum. “We’re excited that this new building will protect the collections and also make them more accessible to the people of B.C.”