MONTREAL—Despite controversy surrounding the engineering giant, SNC-Lavalin has won the $127-million contract to build the new Shriners Hospital at the Glen Yards.

Eighteen months after ground was broken on the site of the hospital, SNC-Lavalin is expected to begin construction on the new building this April.

The hospital will be twice the size of the current Shriners facility on Cedar Ave. With eight floors, the new youth hospital will cover 2,700 square metres, and hold 22 single-patient rooms and four operating rooms.

“We will have new programs like a motion analysis lab, there's more space for rehab and certainly from a family perspective there are several areas for families,” said an excited Celine Doray, the administrator for the hospital.

CTV Montreal reporter Rob Lurie asked Jerry Gantt, a member of the board of directors of the Shriners International why they chose SNC-Lavalin. Several of the firm’s former executives are charged with fraud related to the construction of the McGill University Health Centre superhospital, which is also located at the Glen Yards.

"We chose to use and negotiate with SNC-Lavalin on a fee basis as a construction manager, not as a general contractor. We will have the opportunity to select the subcontractors and suppliers that will be doing work on the site," said Gantt.

SNC-Lavalin issued a statement on Thursday: "We are very pleased to have been awarded a third key project in Quebec’s health care sector. This state-of-the-art health care facility will be a true model of excellence in pediatric orthopedics"

The Shriners say they'll be watching every step of construction closely to make sure the project stays on budget.

The only public money involved in the hospital is the value of the land, which was donated by the provincial government. The $127 million dedicated to construction was donated entirely by Shriners.

To offset the cost of new construction, the Shriners will also be selling their Cedars Ave. building, constructed in 1925.

The new hospital is expected to be completed in 2015.