Construction Update: Replacement Harry Balfour School

Grande Prairie, AB – Peace Wapiti Public School Division (PWPSD) is pleased to announce that Start Architecture has been named the successful bidder for design of the replacement Harry Balfour School. The expected two-year construction period is anticipated to begin this fall at the Five Mile Hall site provided by the County of Grande Prairie. Construction funding approval for the replacement school was announced by Education Minister Adriana LaGrange during a visit to PWPSD Central Office last March.

PWPSD is currently collaborating with Alberta Education, Alberta Infrastructure and Start Architecture on a design similar to Whispering Ridge Community School. Meanwhile, the County of Grande Prairie – an integral partner throughout the entirety of the project – is working to develop water, wastewater, electricity and natural gas services at the construction site.

The replacement school will continue to serve Junior Kindergarten - Grade 8 students in the existing Harry Balfour School attendance area.


Replacement Harry Balfour School achieves two important Capital Plan priorities

Replacing Harry Balfour School has been the PWPSD Board’s top Capital Plan priority since the opening of Whispering Ridge Community School in 2018 which saw transfer of approximately half of the school’s rapidly growing enrolment. The replacement school achieves another important goal for the Board – educating County of Grande Prairie students where they live, thereby eliminating the additional time required to transport rural students through the busy central core of the city to the current location at 104 Street in Grande Prairie.


About Start Architecture

With offices in Edmonton and Calgary, Start Architecture is no stranger to school construction. The firm has collaborated with the Alberta Education and Infrastructure ministries on a number of school builds throughout the province, including Mother Teresa Catholic School in Grande Prairie. Their impressive project roster also includes the CN Campus in Winnipeg, Phase 1 of the Stollery Children’s Hospital Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (PCICU), the Central Alberta Cancer Centre, and a number of renewal projects at the University of Alberta.

Photo: Five Mile Hall site, courtesy of Google Maps.