Valcartier military base to take in Syrian refugees

CFB Valcartier near Quebec City has put out a call for tenders to winterize 10 cadet residences by the year's end, as the base prepares to receive a first group of Syrian refugees by Dec. 1.

CFB Valcartier is set to receive a first group of refugees by Dec. 1, official source confirms

(Cimon Leblanc/ Radio-Canada)


  • First Syrian refugees to arrive Dec. 1, source confirms

The Canadian Forces Base Valcartier is preparing to take in Syrian refugees, with the first group expected to arrive by Dec. 1.

CFB Valcartier, 50 kilometres north of Quebec City, has put out a call for tenders to winterize 10 buildings on the base that normally house cadets during summer training. The cadet camp can house approximately 1,500 people at once, according to a retired non-commissioned officer.

In addition, officials at the base are freeing up space in existing housing blocks.

An aerial shot shows the size of the Valcartier military base. (Submitted by Jonathan Wade)

Radio-Canada obtained a Department of National Defence email that confirms rooms in certain housing units on the Valcartier base must be vacated as soon as possible – although it doesn't explicitly state that they will be needed for refugees.

However, an official source has confirmed to Radio-Canada that the first arrivals are expected by Dec.1.

The call for tenders for the winterization of the cadet housing invited contractors who want to bid on the $1.5-million project to visit the site this morning.  The deadline for bids is Nov. 24, and the work must be finished by Dec. 30, 2015.

The project includes installing heating and ventilation, insulating floors and ceilings, and building new exterior walls.

Quebec waiting for nod from Ottawa

The federal government has not yet said how Canada plans to house the 25,000 Syrian refugees it has vowed to take in by the end of the year.

Quebec has already committed to bringing in 3,600 refugees — a number that could jump to 5,700 when the federal government eventually releases its plan.

Quebec City is expected to host 500 to 800 refugees. It is one of 13 Quebec municipalities slated to take in refugees.