Preparatory work started last week on an expansion of the Buck Creek CANFOR fish hatchery. (Cindy Verbeek photo)

Hatchery expansion project gets underway

Goal is to get structure to ‘lock up’ stage

With its building permit in hand, the A Rocha Buck Creek Canfor hatchery started its long-planned expansion project last week.

The plan is to complete the foundation and move on to framing and roofing to the “lock up” stage over the next several months, says A Rocha’s northern coordinator, Cindy Verbeek.

“Then we will see where we are at with funding and volunteers and we will continue to pick away at the inside insulation, drywalls etc. after that,” she said.

The coho hatchery’s current structure was opened in Sept. 2017 on land donated by Canfor, replacing a tent and shed.

Planning then started for Phase II, an expansion to further develop the hatchery as an education and conservation centre.

An initial concept costing an estmated $300,000 was scaled down to approximately $200,000 and with that latter amount now within reach thanks to donations of monentary or in-kind commitments, construction has now started.

A Pacific Salmon Foundation $22,500 grant received late last month helped the hatchery get to the stage it could start construction.

The expansion consists of a 30 foot by 30 foot indoor display/activity space and a 20 foot by 30 foot covered outdoor display/activity space.

A Rocha as an international organization which first took root in Portugal — the name means “the rock” in Portuguese and has been working in Houston since 2003.

It’s based on Christian values relating to the environment and conservation and in Houston, projects have included recycling, a community market and a food garden as well as making presentations and undertaking initiatives with schools and churches in the area.

Here’s an up to date list of contributors to the expansion:Grizzly Bear Foundation, Dragon Fire Charitable Foundation, Pacific Salmon Foundation Grant , Co-op Community Spaces, Scenic View Contracting, Bulkley Valley Naturalists, Trans Canada Pipeline, Bulkley Valley Credit Union, BV Community Foundation, Canadian Forest Products, Dungate Community Forest, A Rocha Canada, Pacific Salmon Foundation Grant, Jerico Contracting, Castle Building Supply, Houston Food Market, Countrywide Stationary, City Furniture & Appliances, Andy Meints Contracting, BV Chiropractor, All West Glass, Nadina Truck Service, Road Runner, Traction Tire, Basement Dwellers, Sunshine Inn, Newmont Canada (Equity Mine), Groot Brothers and many private donors.

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