CFB GAGETOWN, NEW BRUNSWICK--(Marketwire - July 24, 2012) - The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, today announced the Canadian Forces Weather and Oceanographic Service (CFWOS) Transformation project. This announcement represents a major investment and its scope stretches across Canada, specifically at Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Gagetown, CFB Esquimalt and CFB Halifax.
"As the capabilities of our Canadian Forces have grown, so too has the demand for more sophisticated meteorological services to support our personnel during operations both at home and abroad," said Minister MacKay. "With over 70 years of service, the Canadian Forces Weather Service plays an essential role in the success of these operations. This project will help them to do their vital work more effectively and efficiently."
The CFWOS Transformation project involves a variety of infrastructure work, including the expansion of the former Army Meteorological Centre at CFB Gagetown, which will now house the new Joint Meteorological Centre. Other work also includes the renovation of the existing Meteorological and Oceanographic Centres at CFB Esquimalt and CFB Halifax.
The Joint Meteorological Centre will centralize weather briefing and forecasting functions into a single facility at CFB Gagetown and allow personnel to develop new and improved weather specific products for the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces. The construction work associated with this project is scheduled to be complete by June 2014.
"The Fredericton area and province of New Brunswick are proud to be home to this world-class military facility," said Minister Keith Ashfield, Member of Parliament for Fredericton and Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. "I am pleased to note that this new Centre will increase the capacity at Base Gagetown and create jobs in this region."
"Having accurate, timely and detailed weather information is essential to enabling effective military operations. Improving weather information delivery using modern technology will allow the Canadian Forces to conduct operations in the safest and most effective manner," said the Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Associate Minister of National Defence. "In keeping with the commitments our Government made in the Canada First Defence Strategy, we are reducing the risk to the lives of our men and women in uniform by providing the critical, modern equipment they need to do the jobs we ask of them."
Work on this project has begun in Spring 2012, as the Government of Canada has awarded a $5.1M construction contract to Maxim 2000 Inc., of Saint John, New Brunswick, for the construction of the new 1120m2 wing at CFB Gagetown. In addition, a $61 980 contract has been awarded to Stantec Consulting, of Edmonton, Alberta, for the design work associated with the renovations at CFB Esquimalt. These contracts were awarded through an open, fair, and transparent competitive process.
In line with the Canada First Defence Strategy, there is a need to update and replace defence infrastructure in order to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
For further information, please see the backgrounder at http://www.forces.gc.ca/site/news-nouvelles/news-nouvelles-eng.asp?id=4330