District of Elkford council, staff break ground, signifying the official start of construction of their new District office. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Work begins on new District of Elkford office

First shovels hit the dirt for construction of new District office

On Thursday, May 24, shovels hit the ground during the groundbreaking of the new District of Elkford office. For council and staff, this has been a long time coming.

The District has collaborated with Scott Builders to design and build a new District office, which will replace their current 46-year-old building. It is set to be completed by early 2019.

“The current office was built in 1972 and has seen the community through many years of growth, and change,” said Elkford Mayor Dean McKerracher.

In addition to replacing the current aging building, McKerracher explained the new office would offer a larger, more workable space for better service to the public, aligning with the day-to-day operations of the District.

The building will be erected closer to the Elkford Community Conference Centre, but the tobogganing hill will remain. The District plans to add a public space close to the hill, featuring a fire pit and tables for the public to enjoy.

McKerracher explained that the design of the new building would be focused on energy efficiency. A solar system will provide at least half of the energy needed to power the building.

They are currently in the final steps of securing $25,000 from Solar Now. The District will match the $25,000 from their energy conservation reserve fund. These funds will be used for the solar energy generation system.

“I’ve been mayor, I’ve been on staff and council for the last 13 years and we’re finally going to use solar in Elkford,” said McKerracher.

“I hope it proves out well.”

The District of Elkford will also be better prepared in the case of a community-wide emergency, thanks to the installation of a generator at the new office. This means that the office will be able to function as an emergency operations centre in the case of an emergency situation. This came after the District was awarded a $25,000 grant through the Province of BC’s Community Energy Preparedness Fund.

“Looking forward, this is just one more step in moving Elkford into the future,” said McKerracher.

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