More than $3 million in seismic upgrades have been finished at Cloverdale Traditional School, strengthening the overall building to eliminate the amount of movement in an earthquake.
Education Minister Mike Bernier visited the Saanich elementary school last week to see the upgrades first hand, which took 10 months to complete. The improvements include new concrete shear walls, reinforced structural walls and roof materials.
“It’s amazing to see the investment we’re making to make sure schools are safe and seismically upgraded,” said Bernier. “This is a perfect example of the school district working hard and bringing forward a proper plan for the safety of students.”
Jim Soles, project manager for capital projects with the Greater Victoria School District, said the project was relatively straightforward, with the upgrades addressing two building blocks that were at high risk of collapse in the event of an earthquake. The school was originally built in 1917 and was rebuilt in 1963.
“It’s a concrete building with unreinforced masonry infill, and a concrete frame wasn’t ductile,” said Soles. “We built a number of concrete shear walls on the building exterior and grabbed onto the second floor and the roof with those walls.
“We used structural steel inside to connect all the beams and the walls to the shear walls, and then we upgraded the roof diaphragm and we saw cut and reinforced the concrete block walls and the interior.”
Since 2001, the B.C. government has invested more than $256.4 million in capital and seismic projects in the Saanich and Victoria school districts. These investments include the replacement of Royal Oak middle school, an addition to Prospect Lake elementary and seismic upgrades to Lansdowne middle and Tillicum elementary.