North Island Hospital team goes back to school


Building the $331.7 million, 153-bed Comox Valley Hospital next to an elementary school is proving inspirational and educational for students as well as members of the North Island Hospitals Project team.

It helps when your Queneesh School classroom has one of the best views of the Comox Valley Hospital construction site. That’s the case with students and teacher Anne Buchanan in the intermediate Montessori class including grades 4-7. The class has adopted the hospital project.

Questions from students

Chief Project Officer Tom Sparrow, left, and Bret Miche, Comox Valley senior project manager for Graham Design Builders, right, field questions from students in the Queneesh School’s intermediate Montessori class.

The students and their teacher have mapped out in considerable detail the stages of building a hospital, from planning and site preparation to public engagement and actual construction. The would-be project managers listed in detail a wide range of jobs associated with preparing, constructing and operating.

Crane builders

Queneesh Elementary School crane builders: from left, Liam McNamee, Nicolas Costantino, Nathan Berrigan and Jack Boan.

“Bret and I were completely amazed and impressed by the scope of the work these students have done, and their well-informed questions,” Sparrow said. “They knew more about the project than a lot of folks.”

One group of students took their study one step farther, using popsicle stick construction to create a model of the two tower cranes which loom over the construction site.