New float house gives $2 million boost to local businesses

April 15, 2016 – Campbell River, B.C.

The completion of a $2 million aquaculture barge in Campbell River has provided an economic boost to local trades on Vancouver Island.  The accommodation and fish feed storage barge is the biggest concrete float ever built by Pacific Marine Construction and will include state-of-the-art technology used for raising BC salmon.

The float house, built for Marine Harvest Canada (MHC), will soon be moved to one of the company’s salmon farms in the Port Hardy area. To secure the barge on site, other local businesses have been contracted to provide services such as towing, anchoring and commissioning.

MHC Marine Projects Manager Dave Pedersen said the work of local contractors had been exceptional. “It is on time and budget, despite being the biggest concrete barge we’ve ever built and having a new design with a walk-around apron to improve safety.”

Dave explained that the large size – it has eight bedrooms – will ensure comfortable accommodation for operations personnel and contractors. Farm employees have separate rooms, desalinated and hot water on demand, improved anchoring, and a safer design for feed storage.

Pacific Marine Construction owner Cory Handyside said it took four and a half months to build at his ship yard at Discovery Harbour. “It was a very rewarding project to work on. We had a crew of ten people on it full time to build such a big float house, battling weather and tight timelines. It took excellent teamwork,” Cory said.

Another Campbell River business benefitting from the build is Powerserve Energy, which installed the electrical and communications hardware including the Steinsvik feed delivery and monitoring system.

Powerserve Energy owner Stefan Schedler said his firm’s experience in providing power generation and electrical support for the aquaculture industry continues to grow. “This is a challenging and highly specialized field, we’re very grateful for the industry as well as our dedicated and skilled team of technicians here in Campbell River who can successfully execute this often difficult type of work.”

Marine Harvest is the world’s leading salmon aquaculture company, with its Canadian head office located in Campbell River, B.C.