Seaspan Shipyards is making substantial investments to upgrade and expand its Vancouver Drydock infrastructure to help grow the company's ship repair and maintenance operations in British Columbia and to better serve the Pacific Northwest.
Seaspan received permit approval from the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (VFPA) in October to extend its North Vancouver drydock facilities to increase capacity and service additional vessels.
Seaspan consolidated its ship repair and maintenance projects at Vancouver Drydock, resulting in the shipyard running at or near capacity for several years. Company officials say the drydock expansion will increase Seaspan's capacity for ship repair projects by about 30% “and will result in approximately 100 new, well-paying jobs.”
"Seaspan Vancouver Drydock plays an integral role in supporting the West Coast marine industry and creating long-term work for B.C.'s skilled workforce. By investing in improvements to better use our land and the space within our water lots, we will be able to serve more customers, create new jobs and harness new economic activity for our communities," said Paul Hebson, vice president and general manager of Vancouver Drydock. "The input and feedback we gathered during the public engagement process for the drydock expansion allowed us to develop meaningful measures to address concerns and helped us created a stronger, more responsive project."
The upgrade includes a drydock expansion, a new operations building and a complete upgrade and extension to the current careen deck to enhance its capabilities.
The expansion includes extending Seaspan's current water lot by 40 meters (131’) and the addition of two new smaller drydocks and a floating work pontoon to the west of the two existing drydocks. The company said it expects the project to take about a year to complete, with the drydocks and work pontoon arriving by water fully assembled.
The project is subject to 61 conditions that address the local impacts of noise, air emissions and lighting. Seaspan has committed to implementing several mitigation measures to its existing operation, as well as to the expanded facilities.
The new operations building for Seaspan is designed to accommodate up to 300 people over two shifts. Construction is expected to be completed by late 2024.
Vancouver Drydock currently has about 200 people who complete maintenance, repair and refit on more than 50 vessel projects per year, including tugs, ferries, large freighters, Canadian coast guard vessels, cruise ships, fishing vessels, and barges.
Seaspan Shipyards, a division of Seaspan ULC, is a leader in Canada's shipbuilding and ship repair industry, with modern facilities and a workforce of 3,600 in North Vancouver and Victoria.