BCIT names training centre for Vancouver developer
By Adam FreillConstruction Institutional Skills Development
Concert Properties recognized for its commitment to supporting trades training at BCIT with naming honour.
A new trades and technology centre that will be developed at the Burnaby campus of British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) will bear the name of Vancouver-based real-estate developer Concert Properties.
Once completed, the Concert Properties Centre for Trades & Technology will provide a space for innovation in skilled trades and engineering, applied learning, research and industry collaboration, and build capacity for 700 additional students which will alleviate trades training waitlists and help to build up a healthy talent pool in B.C.
The centre will also anchor a new and renewed nine-building Trades and Technology Complex (TTC), under development at BCIT. This complex will include a covered works yard, simulation-based learning areas, maker spaces, and power, welding and construction areas.
Concert has donated $7.5 million for the centre, which represents a key phase of BCIT’s Inspire Campaign. To-date, that campaign, chaired by Concert Properties co-founder and chair David Podmore, has raised more than $100 million as part of part of a six-year $680-million infrastructure investment target at the learning institute.
“We’re extremely humbled and honoured to see our longstanding commitment to trades training programs and BCIT recognized in this way,” stated Podmore. “This centre and these programs are key to equipping diverse, hardworking Canadians with the skills to secure well-paying jobs in construction, and we remain committed to working with our industry partners to find practical solutions to challenges that affect us all.”
In the mid 1990s, Podmore first brought together industry leaders to address a shortage of skilled trades labour and subsequently founded Concert’s Corporate Annual Charity Golf Tournament to raise funds for trades-training programs. In 2002, Podmore and industry partners launched and provided funding for BCIT’s Trades Discovery Program, which has helped people across B.C. explore and pursue careers in different construction trades for the past two decades.
Since the first annual charity golf tournament was held in 1995, it and other initiatives led by Concert have contributed over $2.4 million to the Trades Discovery Program. With the $7.5 million donation towards the new centre, Concert’s total financial commitment to BCIT over the past quarter-century has reached nearly $10 million.
“The Concert Properties Centre for Trades & Technology will help meet the demand for an estimated 85,000 new trades jobs expected over the next 10 years in B.C.,” stated Paul McCullough, interim president of BCIT. “It will set a new standard for applied education, research and collaboration–where together we will advance education, industry and society.”
Construction of the centre is scheduled to begin in 2023.