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Architects OBMI appointed to airport project

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Steve Nackan, president of Aecon Concessions

The local office of international architecture firm OBMI has been hired to work on the first phase of the controversial $250 million airport redevelopment project.

The appointment was made by Canadian contractors Aecon Construction Group, after an “extensive competitive selection process”, according to a press release.

The process included a request for qualifications (RQF), request for proposals (RPF), presentation and interview stages.

OBMI will work with Scott Associates Architects, Aecon’s lead architectural firm specialising in airport design, on aesthetics, interior design and local building code compliance for the proposed new airport terminal.

The office will also provide guidance on Bermudian building methods and materials and support for the permitting and planning approval processes.

Aecon Concessions president Steve Nackan said: “We want to ensure that the design for the proposed new airport terminal effectively captures and communicates the image that Bermuda aspires to project to the world, including the uniqueness of its culture, the warmth and friendliness of its people and the natural beauty of its island setting.

“Clearly, the contribution of local architects and designers is critical to this process and we look forward to working with OBMI, whose impressive contributions to the Bermudian architectural landscape and familiarity with public private partnerships bode especially well for the success of this project.”

Colin Campbell, regional director of OBMI, said: “Our Bermuda airport provides the initial and concluding impressions of our island experience to every air traveller.

“This critical redevelopment of our core transportation infrastructure has the potential to become an iconic symbol of Bermudians resourcefulness and preparedness to meet the challenges of the future.

“Our business and tourism economy requires a facility that embraces 21st century standards. We are excited with the unique opportunity to participate in creating a new modern air terminal with a fundamentally unique Bermudian context.”

The selection of OBMI as local architects for the project follows the engagement by Aecon of Bermuda-based Atlantic Well Drillers, Onsite Engineering and Bermuda-Caribbean Engineering Consultants for the airport geotechnical survey work completed in the final quarter of 2015.

Building work is due to start on the new airport later this year in the face of critics who say the entire project should have been tendered. The redevelopment involves a sole source agreement between the Bermuda Government and the Canadian Commercial Corporation, a Canadian Government-owned entity, which appointed Aecon.

Colin Campbell, OBMI regional director