Government of Canada awards contracts for design and construction of Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre, providing opportunities for Indigenous businesses

News release

December 20, 2021 - Moncton, New Brunswick – Public Services and Procurement Canada

Building world-class scientific infrastructure to advance science for Canadians

Through Laboratories Canada, the Government of Canada is providing federal scientists with world-class, innovative and collaborative facilities so they can pursue leading-edge scientific research today and into the future.

Today, the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc and the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, on behalf of the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister of Public Services and Procurement, announced a $23.6-million contract to Diamond Schmitt Architects to deliver design services and a $5.8-million contract to Pomerleau for initial construction management for the redevelopment of the Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre. The construction management contract is expected to be worth just over $300 million as additional work proceeds, which is expected to create and sustain a minimum of 200 jobs that will support the local and surrounding economy.

Both contracts include Indigenous Participation Plans that will see over $60 million flowing through to Indigenous businesses and communities in New Brunswick.

The Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre will bring together federal scientists working to protect and sustain Atlantic freshwater and coastal ecosystems and will house scientists from Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the National Research Council of Canada. The Canadian Space Agency will also be a virtual partner.

Site preparation and construction work is anticipated to begin in 2022, with more extensive work beginning in 2023. The project will be completed by 2030.

Additional multimedia

This is a proposed design concept of the interior lobby of the future Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre in Moncton, New Brunswick. Exhibited on display is a skeleton of a North Atlantic right whale, which will serve as a dramatic reminder of why we must work so diligently to protect the health of our oceans and the species within it.


“Under the Laboratories Canada strategy, the government is strengthening federal science infrastructure across Canada. Today’s announcement is an important milestone in the Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre project. We are building a leading-edge facility that will advance science in the region for decades to come, and this work will also foster meaningful, long-term relationships with Indigenous partners.”

The Honourable Filomena Tassi
Minister of Public Services and Procurement

“The Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre will make the Greater Moncton area a hub for research into Atlantic freshwater and coastal ecosystems. It will also create high-quality jobs for our university graduates, who will be able to take part in meaningful, immersive research that will enable us to protect our oceans, lakes, rivers and aquatic species for future generations.”

The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc
Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities

“This announcement is a testament to our government’s commitment to support critical research initiatives to better manage our ecosystems and create good jobs in Atlantic Canada and opportunities for coastal communities, while advancing reconciliation in the region. About $60 million will flow to Indigenous businesses and communities in New Brunswick through this important project, and we look forward to continuing this collaboration in the years to come.”

The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

Quick facts

  • The Government of Canada is committed to increasing the participation of Indigenous businesses in federal procurement by awarding at least 5% of federal contracts to businesses that are owned or led by Indigenous Peoples. The federal government spends about $22 billion per year; therefore, achieving this target will provide significant economic benefits to Indigenous businesses.

  • Under the Indigenous Participation Plans, Indigenous businesses will receive contracts valued at 7.5% of the total contract value for pre-design services and 10% of the total base contract for construction management. For the future construction phase of the project, it is expected that an Indigenous Participation Plan of 22% will be achieved, significantly surpassing the Government of Canada’s 5% objective.

  • Through partnerships formed with Indigenous communities, universities, the fishing industry, non-governmental organizations and other federal government departments, interpretative spaces are being developed to help future generations of Canadians engage in marine science and ocean literacy.

  • The Atlantic Science Enterprise Centre project will also incorporate Indigenous elements into the design and operation of the facility through ongoing collaboration with Indigenous partners in New Brunswick.

Associated links


James Fitz-Morris
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Filomena Tassi

Media Relations
Public Services and Procurement Canada

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