‘Speed dating’ events to connect businesses and hospital builders

Local businesses can interact with each of the three consortiums bidding on the hospitals project to promote their companies and services.

‘Industry Speed Dating Events’ will be held giving local businesses a chance to network with the builders of the new hospitals.

A new collaboration between the Campbell River Chamber of Commerce (CRCC), Vancouver Island Construction Association (VICA), Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce (CVCC), Vancouver Island Economic Alliance (VIEA) and the North Island Hospitals Project (NIHP) of the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) will see the creation of ‘Industry Speed Dating Events’ to be held in both the Comox Valley and Campbell River in late May of 2013.

These events will provide an opportunity for local businesses to interact with each of the three consortiums bidding on the hospitals project to promote their companies and services.

The North Island Hospitals Project will be constructing two new state-of-the-art hospitals with a total cost of $600 million; $334 million for the Comox Valley Hospital and $266 million for the Campbell River Hospital. The Comox Strathcona Regional Hospital District will be contributing 40 per cent to the overall project, approximately $240 million.

The Campbell River and District General Hospital will be replaced with a new 95-bed facility. It will maintain the same slate of services as the current facility, as well as additional beds and services to accommodate population growth and changing demographics. St. Joseph’s General Hospital in the Comox Valley will be replaced with a new 153-bed facility that will expand existing services to meet population growth and aging, as well as establishing selected new services for the entire North Island.

The North Island Hospitals Project has completed the Request for Qualifications and is set to release the Request for Proposals in early April to the three proponents bidding on the project.  The project will be awarded in early 2014, with construction beginning shortly after the announcement of a winning bid and lasting about 4 years. Both hospitals will be ready to open by fall 2017.

“This is an exciting project for North Vancouver Island,” said Tom Sparrow, NIHP Chief Project Officer. “Not only will the new hospitals provide state-of-the-art care for these communities, with hospital space increases of 69 per cent in Campbell River and 71 per cent the Comox Valley, they will create approximately 2,000 direct jobs and over 1,400 indirect jobs throughout both communities.”

“We are excited to be working in partnership to provide a chance for our members and local businesses to interact with those consortiums bidding on the project to promote their services and capacity to showcase our community” said CRCC President & CEO Colleen Evans. “We want to make sure that our members are well-positioned to compete for business opportunities that will arise from a project of this size.”

“Our partnership with the Campbell River Chamber of Commerce, VIHA, the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance and the Vancouver Island Construction Association, provides a unique opportunity for our members and other businesses in the Comox Valley to show what we can offer as a community and be involved in this project at a very early stage,” said Dianne Hawkins, President & CEO of the CVCC.

The North Island Hospital Project will continue to share information about the Project through quarterly community meetings, the Campbell River Chamber of Commerce Major Projects web portal, partner websites and in-person events, including the Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce Annual General Meeting being held on April 18, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. at Crown Isle.

“This model of collaboration and partnership demonstrates the opportunities that arise when government, industry, business and communities work together. The ability to share information about this new project, and provide opportunities for our members to promote their services and experience ensures our members are ready to compete for work when construction begins,” said VICA CEO Greg Baynton.

“As the North Island Hospitals Project progresses, there will be many opportunities for our members and the entire North Island business community to be engaged. The Industry Speed Dating Events are a great example of how we are working to connect our local businesses and companies with this project,” said VIEA President George Hanson.

“The North Island Hospitals Project is excited to work in collaboration with Vancouver Island Construction Association, Vancouver Island Economic Alliance, and the Campbell River and Comox Valley Chambers of Commerce on Industry Speed Dating,” Sparrow said. “These events provide a unique opportunity for local businesses to demonstrate what they can offer and increase the potential to benefit economically from this Project. This collaboration will help to ensure success for the local communities and the hospital project.”

For more information about the North Island Hospitals Project check out: http://cr.majorprojects.ca/;

Or the Vancouver Island Health Authority at: http://www.viha.ca/about_viha/building_for_health/nihp.htm

— Vancouver Island Health Authority

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