SHIPPAGAN (GNB) – Construction is well underway on an $11 million co-location project at Campus de la Péninsule acadienne of the Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick and at the Shippagan campus of the Université de Moncton.

Premier Brian Gallant visited the site with campus representatives today.

“Your government knows that the economy and education are priorities for New Brunswickers,” said Gallant. “We are proud to work alongside the Trudeau government to get things done and I am encouraged to see the hard work that has been done to enhance opportunities for New Brunswick students.”

The provincial government has invested $6.37 million and the federal government has invested $5.01 million to add 2,610 sq. metres (29,000 sq. feet) to the Irène-Léger pavilion under the Strategic Investment Fund. The new space will be shared by both the college and the university and will include a communal cafeteria and offices for student services, as well as new space for classrooms, laboratories and college offices.

The foundation and steel frame of the new building are complete. A new sprinkler system has been installed in the heritage building of the Université de Moncton’s Shippagan campus, and renovations have been done in the wing already occupied by the Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick.

The project is expected to be complete by September 2018.

“I am happy to see that the work has begun for this infrastructure project,” said Acadie-Bathurst MP Serge Cormier. “These post-secondary institutions are important to the riding of Acadie-Bathurst because they allow our students to pursue their studies close to home while also attracting students from elsewhere to come to Shippagan. The funding awarded through the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund will allow students to have access to modern facilities for research and innovation, in addition to contributing to the economic development of the region.”

Cormier attended the event for federal Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains.

“This co-location project between the Université de Moncton, Shippagan campus, and the Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick, Acadian Peninsula campus, is part of our mission of providing our students with the best education possible,” said the university president and vice-chancellor Raymond Théberge. “This collaboration between these two institutions will enrich the experience for students by providing them with additional academic, cultural, social and sports opportunities. This is a unifying project that will foster the development of a community that is already very vibrant, and further consolidate the role of these two institutions in the development of this Acadian region.”

Through the fund, the federal government will provide $49.3 million, the provincial government will invest $35.2 million, and universities will contribute $14.1 million, in several projects, which will result in a total of $98.6 million being spent on university and college infrastructure in New Brunswick. It is expected that additional investments will bring the total amount received by colleges and universities to $111 million.

“The construction is another step towards the completion of this co-location project, which is a unifying project for the Acadian Peninsula,” said Liane Roy, president and CEO of the Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick. “We are pleased with the progression of the work. The steel structure is stunning. We look forward to the official opening because our students will fully benefit from this wonderful campus starting in September 2018.”