In September 9 the West Coast Railway Association will officially start construction of its new Roundhouse and Conference Centre in Squamish, B.C.
The association is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving British Columbia’s railway heritages and equipment. Operating since 1961, the group’s volunteers have restored over 80 old locomotives and railway cars. The prize of the collection is the Royal Hudson Steam Engine, which is undergoing a $1 million restoration.
Located in the West Coast Railway Heritage Park in Squamish, the new Roundhouse will give a new permanent home for the Royal Hudson and exhibition space for seven other pieces of railway equipment. The $4-million building will also be able to be used as a meeting and conference facility with up to 20,000 square feet of clear meeting space. During conference and other community events, the trains and carriages will be rolled out of the building and the tracks will be paneled in.
The association is also building a new train turntable, which is being engineered by ND LEA consulting engineers.
The Roundhouse project involves R.F. Binnie & Associates as civil engineers, Yoneda and Associates as mechanical engineers, Falcon Engineering for electrical design and Jacques Beaudreault, Musson Cattell Mackey as architects. Levelton Consultants is the geotechnical engineer for both the Roundhouse and the turntable.
The association received a grant of $2 million from the B.C. Community Development Infrastructure initiative for the construction project, and $2 million in funds from an association member. The railway heritage park had 45,500 visitors in 2004.