TC • Media
SYDNEY — Cape Breton sheet metal workers, siders and roofers are about to get a local training facility, with construction on the project planned for next month at Sydport.
Joint Apprenticeship Training committee members with the Sheet Metal Workers' and Roofers International Association Local 56 are excited to break ground for a new training facility in Sydport. Committee members, from left, are John Harrington, Gerald Phillippo, Bill Barrington, Jack Wall, Jeff Ellis and Jim Wilkie. Steve Wadden - Cape Breton Post
The land sale process is nearing completion with the owners of Sydport Industrial Park and is expected to be wrapped up next week, said Jack Wall, business manager and financial secretary for the Sheet Metal Workers' and Roofers International Association Local 56. No details of the sale were made available, but tenders for construction of the new building, a joint venture between the union and the Joint Apprenticeship Training committee, are slated to go out the week after next.
Construction of the 8,000-square-foot building is expected to start by late July and the training facility is expected to open its doors in November or December.
Sydport was chosen over other locations in North Sydney and downtown Sydney because it would be a more central location for students from all parts of the island, said Wall.
Three trades will receive training at the facility: Sheet metal workers, who do ventilation work on major buildings; siders, who do all the major siding on commercial buildings; and roofers, who work on flat roofs on commercial projects.
“There is no training for our trades in Cape Breton whatsoever,” said Wall. “This is a major plus for the area.
“They are just starting to work on (training for flat roofers) on the mainland, and we’ve always had to go to Halifax for training (for sheet metal workers).”
When the building is finished, it will have classrooms and a large shop area, said Wall, and all training will be done to provincial standards.
“We are working with the Department of Labour and Advanced Education on how the courses will run. This is going to be a big advantage for a lot of people, especially our young people.”