A legal dispute that idled construction of the new Vector Aerospace shop and office building at the Langley airport has ended with a B.C. Supreme Court order turning the partly-built facility over to Vector, a helicopter maintenance and repair company.
Court documents obtained by the Times show the order was filed in the Vancouver registry on Aug. 18.
The written submissions show work on the project was halted in February because of a contract dispute between Vector and two firms with near-identical names, Aries Construction Management (2014) and Aries Construction Management Ltd, who held the lease for the property and were in charge of building the facility.
The written order gives Vector possession of the unfinished shell of the building and the right to continue with the construction work.
The order also prohibits the Aries companies “and their principals, employees and agents” from entering the site without getting written permission.
The 63,100 sq. ft hangar with 21,500 sq. ft of office space was supposed to replace five leased Vector facilities in Langley.
The court records show Vector and the Aries companies were at odds over design changes.
The Aries companies said Vector was asking for alterations that amounted to a “wholesale change to the interior” of the building and should pay another $2 million on top of the $7 million price.
The requested changes included a “complete redesign” of the structure for the second floor office and all the shop mezzanines, according to the written submission by the Aries companies.
Among other things, Aries claimed two full stairwells with one “ships ladder” stairway had become eight stairways, ceiling heights were raised, and other changes were made.
Vector said the changes were covered by the contract, which set a fixed price for the project and allowed for alterations.
“It was acknowledged in the contract, and on the drawings, that the layout and configuration of the shop area and offices would be changed to suit the specific business requirements of Vector, and that the shop area changes would be made at no additional cost to Vector,” the Vector submission said.
The order requires Vector to pay any amounts the Aries companies may be liable for rent and other charges associated with the construction project, including insurance.
The project was first announced in February, 2012.
In the original press release announcing the expansion, Elvis Moniz, vice-president of operations at Vector-Langley said the new facility would include a state-of-the-art paint booth capable of handling bigger aircraft like the Sikorsky S-61 and AS332 Super Puma along with three helipads to accommodate customer “fly-in” requirements.
Vector in Langley carries out a wide range of major helicopter repairs, inspections and overhauls, including rebuilds and refurbishments, airframe and avionic refits and upgrades and custom interiors and modifications.
It is part of the larger Vector Aerospace company that operates facilities in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, South Africa and Australia.
Neither Vector nor the Aries companies has responded to a Times request for comment.