A cost originally deemed “out of the realm of reality” by one Qualicum Beach councillor has been approved for renovations on the town’s waterfront washroom.
At its March 19 regular council meeting, council unanimously voted to award the tender for the beach washrooms to Don May Construction for a total cost of $239,207.49. Coun. Anne Skipsey recused herself from the vote.
Planning director Luke Sales brought forward the motion, which was previously deferred back to staff at the Jan. 29 meeting, for reconsideration.
Mayor Teunis Westbroek said council had a second look, and “most of us agreed that this is the way to go.”
Coun. Bill Luchtmeijer previously called the nearly $240,000 price tag “out of the realm of reality.”
When asked by The NEWS what spurred his change in viewpoint, Luchtmeijer said staff went back and got a number of other quotes “and then spelled it out to council how the job was broken down and the price quotes.”
“It seems that the issues that needed to be addressed were way more expensive than I ever thought,” he said. “When I saw the other prices that the bids came in, I realized that we’re actually getting a reasonable price considering the current market.”
The approved total cost is nearly $90,000 more than the original budget. The original budget was an estimated $150,000, with $125,000 coming from the Town of Qualicum Beach and $25,000 to come from a provincial government grant to improve accessibility for the waterfront washrooms.
The washroom building requires a new roof and the interior of the building isn’t accessible to some people with disabilities. Additional features and upgrades include new drywall ceilings, partitions and doors, floor coverings, lighting and exhaust fan systems and upgraded electrical service. There was also an option for a rock exterior and a bench.