ECA - Breaking Ground Summer 2022

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A DISCUSSION WITH MAYOR AMARJEET SOHI ON THE CITY’S CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

PEG GETS AN INSIDE LOOK AT FORT EDMONTON PARK’S AWARD-WINNING INDIGENOUS PEOPLES EXPERIENCE

STATION LANDS TRANSFORMING EDMONTON’S DOWNTOWN

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Official Publication of the Edmonton Construction Association

Summer 2022

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Summer 2022

Message from Derek Ciezki, ECA chair

ON THE COVER

14

From left to right: EllisDon,

In memoriam: Doug Hansen

Kerr Interior, A&S Steel,

12

16

Kerr Interior, ECA, and A&H Steel.

Welcome to the club: David Johnson joins the ECA as its new president

24 Your ECA team

28 Challenges facing the Edmonton construction industry

40 ACA advocacy update

44 A new leader in Edmonton: Q&A with Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi

52 Emissions neutral building in the City of Edmonton

56

PCL marks 100th Anniversary

68 Versus: On Housing

74

84

The April 2022 Infrastructure Owners Forum

People first

88 UDI helps bring business back to downtown Edmonton

ECA scholarships an investment in the industry’s future

94 An inside look: Fort Edmonton Park’s award-winning Indigenous Peoples Experience

98 Bird and Chandos team up for Building Good Initiative

102 Citizen on Jasper set to change Edmonton’s skyline

106

116

124

A big year ahead: YBG is getting up close and personal for 2022

60 years of industry leadership: CP Distributors

119

126

Update from BuildWorks Canada

A spark that keeps glowing: A. Circuit Electric

120

Moving past the ‘what if’

Learning to become a leader

129

110

123

Index to advertisers

Station Lands transforming Edmonton’s downtown

Remembering Aloijsius “Al” Joseph Hendriks

8

Edmonton Construction Association

130 ECA Eddie


AWNINGS

PROJECTING SIGNS

CHANNEL LETTERS

DIGITAL BOARDS

MONUMENTS

NEON LETTERS

PYLONS

SIGN CABINETS

TRAFFIC SIGNS

WINDOW GRAPHICS

INTERIOR SIGNS

WAYFINDING


ECA Breaking Ground Published by: DEL Communications Inc. Suite 300, 6 Roslyn Road Winnipeg, Manitoba R3L 0G5 www.delcommunications.com

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Email:

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Vice-Chair Jen Hancock Treasurer-Secretary Andrew Sharman Directors

Leah Marchon Sean Tymkow ©

Copyright 2022. ECA. All rights reserved. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced by any means, in whole or in part, without the prior written consent of the publisher.

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Edmonton Construction Association

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Message from Derek Ciezki, ECA Chair I extend greetings from the ECA Board of Directors to our member firms and industry partners. I trust this message finds you well, and with the new energy of spring and things opening up, I’m optimistic it will be a successful year despite some of the constraints in the industry. Let us take this time to also reflect on what was another challenging, but successful year in 2021. I also reflect back on the tragic loss of our past chair, Doug Hansen. Doug was an inspirational leader for both the board and the construction industry, and will leave a legacy behind that many would admire. His deep care for his family, people, and authentic leadership is something I am privileged to carry on in his footsteps and strive to be the same leader and person. Doug was a true friend and will be forever missed. Some of the current challenges facing our members include supply chain interruptions, material pricing increases, and labour shortages. As an industry, we are stronger together and we need to collaborate and find ways to find new opportunities to mitigate these challenges. The industry is becoming more transparent, and we will succeed together to find ways to overcome and mitigate these risks and be more innovative in both design and construction. It demonstrates the incredible passion and dedication amongst all industry partners to strive for success. With restrictions being lifted, it will allow more face-to-face discussions and rebuilding connections that we all truly value. Building relationships while delivering quality projects has been the success of the construction industry. Our ECA Board of Directors have been working extremely hard on ensuring that the key pillars of our renewed strategic plan continue to be delivered to each of our member firms. Our current board represents general contractors, subcontractors, manufacturers, suppliers, architectural and engineering, and an owner to ensure a diverse perspective on the direction of the ECA. We have exciting opportunities that exist for the new board members for the 2022 ECA Board of Directors. Through our collaboration pillar in advancing the industry, our Owners Forum kicked off recently with another great session and discussions. Topics of discussion included the challenges around the inflation, cost escalation, and strategies to mitigate and educate, as well as new procurement strategies for the City of Edmonton. The carbon tax was also discussed and the U of A, led by Andrew Sharman, presented some of the challenges that will be faced within the current infrastructure and facilities. An emphasis on renewal work and sustainable design with climate change strategies will need to take priority in the coming years. 12

Edmonton Construction Association

Continued discussions will carry through the summer with subcommittees staying engaged on these topics. We now have over 20 public owners, four private owners, and 30 AEC leaders engaged. Our education working committee has also been active in ensuring new and improved training is available to member firms to continue to enhance our knowledge, professional, and technical development. We are kicking off our next level of Digital Project Delivery training this spring. A focus on mental health, diversity will also be at the forefront offering various webinars to member firms. BuildWorks is also looking at a refresh to ensure there is continued member value in this service and delivery across Edmonton and Alberta. I would like to welcome our new president, David Johnson, who recently joined the ECA in February. David has been a tremendous addition to lead the ECA and augment the ECA leadership with his previous roles leading other associations across Alberta and demonstrating a great business sense and collaborative leadership style. He is supported by our great operations team consisting of Matt Schellenberger, Caroline Bowen, Bev Christensen, and Wendy Billey, who are always working hard to ensure the ECA provides a high level of engagement; whether it be golf, networking opportunities, procurement, and educational opportunities, to name only a few. Our Builders Connect Luncheon was a huge success and great a turn out with over 600 people in attendance. It was one of the first venues in the industry, and although restrictions had just been lifted, there was a lot of energy in the room and need for reconnecting on a social level. With mental health concerns at an ultimate high, the need for connection is key. Our YBG (Young Builders Group) had a great kick-off event and continues to engage the next generation of leaders in construction. If you are in the first half of your career you will want to be a part of this well-organized, dynamic group of future leaders. As we approach the summer months of 2022, business opportunities are certainly more available to our member firms than in recent years, with anticipation of continued growth in Edmonton and the capital region’s construction market. The ECA wishes each of you all the best in 2022. Wishing you and your families a safe and successful spring and summer. Warmest Regards, Derek Ciezki, P.Eng.


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IN MEMORIAM

DOUG HANSEN

FEBRUARY 6, 1965 - FEBRUARY 19, 2022 On February 19th, 2022 we lost our dear friend and ECA family member, Doug Hansen. Doug was a friend, co-worker, and colleague to many in our industry. He was a highly esteemed, inspirational, and well-loved leader. As project director at Fillmore Construction, and chair of the Edmonton Construction Association’s Board of Directors for the years 2021 and 2022, his contributions to our industry will be remembered fondly. Doug’s enthusiasm and compassionate personality radiated throughout the ECA, around the board table, and at our events. Doug leaves behind his wife and three daughters, sister, and father. On behalf of the ECA Board of Directors, staff, and our members, we extend our most sincere sympathies to his family, his friends, and coworkers. We will miss his smile and enthusiastic spirit. u

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Edmonton Construction Association


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WELCOME TO THE CLUB David Johnson joins the ECA as its new president

The ECA welcomed a new president

BREAKING GROUND: TELL US ABOUT

in varying capacities, from senior

earlier this year.

YOURSELF.

leadership to executive director roles.

David Johnson officially started with

David Johnson (DJ): I was born and

I have had the opportunity to really

the Edmonton Construction Association

raised in Edmonton, Alberta and I’m

understand what it means to work in

on February 2, 2022, and comes with

incredibly proud to be from here.

the association world and the value that

over 18 years of experience in association

Interestingly enough, I actually left,

these groups bring to members. I did

not just the city of Edmonton, but

spend a little bit of time in the private

the country, with no real intentions of

sector prior to that, but I found I really

returning, twice. I have come back to this

aligned myself with the values that a

city both times and there are plenty of

member-based association can bring.

good reasons for that. There’s a great

You work on behalf of your members

business community here, amazing

and by doing so, are afforded the

people, and Edmonton is a big city with

opportunity to make their industries and

a small-town feel, which is one of the

organizations better.

management, with previous experience as executive director of the Government Finance Officers Association of Alberta (GFOA Alberta), executive director of the Alberta Charitable Casino Operators (ACCO), and with various executive roles within Alberta Municipalities (formerly known as the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association). We sat down with Johnson to learn more about him, his background, why he was interested in the position, and what

things I love most about it. When you

On a personal note, I love to golf and I

combine all that with the fact that I

love to travel. I have been to 62 different

have friends and family from here, the

countries and hopefully I will get to see

decisions to return were quite easy.

a lot more in the future, as COVID-19

I have spent the past 18 years working

really threw a wrench in that. Volunteer-

he will bring to the table in the years to

in association management, working

wise, I sit on the board of governors

come.

with a variety of different organizations

for the University of Lethbridge, and

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I just recently finished nine years of

involved in the construction industry my

volunteering for FP Canada, which

entire career.

is the national body working in the

The advantage I have is that I joined at an opportune time. I was able to

The ECA has plenty of construction-

come in right as COVID restrictions were

public interest that represents financial

related expertise already. We have 12

starting to ease, we were starting to

planners in Canada. I truly enjoy getting

construction experts sitting on the

return to the office with more regularity,

out there and being able to make a

board and numerous more on ECA’s

and it was early in the calendar year. The

difference.

subgroups. The transferrable skills that I

numerous events that ECA puts on are

can bring to the role is that of leadership

great opportunities for me to meet our

strategic planning, association and

members, meet the board, get brought

operations management, networking,

up to speed on what our strategic plans

WHAT IS YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH CONSTRUCTION? DJ: I don’t have any direct constructionrelated experience, but that was something that I brought up [during the interview process]. What I said to the

and being able to bring issues to the table and find creative solutions to address them.

are, and understand the numerous projects that the ECA is working on. I feel like there is a real positive energy right now. As Albertans, we are all

board during the interview process was

WHEN DID YOU OFFICIALLY START?

that I have many transferrable abilities

DJ: February 2, 2022. Well, officially it

and skills that can complement the ECA

was February 3, but I surprised everyone

have when it’s springtime. The snow is

well. I was concerned that not having

and showed up a day early just to get my

gone, the sun starts shining, and there

direct construction experience might not

feet wet and meet the staff rather than

is a renewed vibrancy in the air. I have

resonate well with the board, however,

coming in on my first full day and get hit

that same feeling from the construction

they noted that my outsider perspective

with everything all at once. It’s been a

industry and the ECA in general with the

can be a very good thing to have. I can

few months now and I really enjoy it – I

lifting of restrictions and people getting

see things through a different lens by

look forward to coming into the office

a taste of what’s normal again. It’s an

virtue of the fact that I have not been

every day.

exciting time to be a part of that.

familiar with the energy we collectively

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WHAT ARE THE ISSUES YOU ARE

On a local level, we work very closely

world, specifically owners, to identify

SEEING IN THE INDUSTRY AND WHAT

with our regional municipal partners,

issues, collaborate, build understanding,

IS THE ECA CURRENTLY DOING TO

the City of Edmonton, Strathcona

and connect, with the purpose of driving

TACKLE AND ADDRESS THOSE ISSUES?

County, the City of St. Albert… all 14

innovation and improving integration

DJ: There are several things. We

regional municipalities within the greater

across the construction continuum with

Edmonton area. We provide input

high-quality outcomes for the entire

work with the Canadian Construction Association on federal issues, and we work very closely with the Alberta Construction Association who advocates politically on behalf of local construction at the provincial level. Of course, the ECA also plays a very important role as a local construction association that represents those regional and municipal issues. If we were to look at it from one perspective, there are some legislative changes coming in Alberta, the Prompt Payment

in terms of what are the pain points for some of our members. Issues are quite varied, from permitting issues to affordable housing, and we work with those municipalities to collectively come up with solutions. We are happy to have such a collaborative working relationship with these groups since ultimately, we also provide value back to the municipalities themselves. If it wasn’t for the ECA, they would be hearing from thousands of ECA members on all the

construction sector. The ECA acts as an advocate, but also acts as a service provider with a range of member services from education to events. Within the ECA there are numerous opportunities for identifying and addressing issues and networking. We have three additional different subgroups: WomenBuild, Young Builders Group (YBG), and the Professional Estimators Group (PEG). Whether these

things that are burning topics, whereas

groups meet through a wine and cheese

coming into force at the end of August.

we can filter those through one voice

networking event or through a more

The ECA has had a seat at the table

and collaboratively provide solutions.

formalized panel discussion, the ECA

and Construction Lien Act, which is

representing our members through the

We have an Owners Infrastructure

acts as a convener to provide these

ACA, with respect to how the changes

Forum, which is a great opportunity for

types of services and events to our

should be made.

the different hubs of the construction

membership.

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WHAT ARE SOME INITIATIVES THE ECA HAS FOR 2022?

the association is to not only support

our membership and to be able to do

that pipeline, but to fill that pipeline

the things they need us to do. With an

DJ: With the highly volatile market in

with qualified candidates to provide

innovation mindset can come success.

terms of material availability, escalating

some long-term labour stability for this

There might be some challenges, like ‘we

prices, and unreliable lead-times, we

industry. We have recently created the

tried that and we failed’. No problem –

are researching on behalf of industry

ECA Career Pathways Committee to

we are not afraid of failure, we are afraid

to see if other entities have been able

address these issues through programs

of not trying. Like anything else, we will

to make any progress in terms of

like Tools for Schools. Additionally, our

measure new opportunities by the risks

contractual addendums or procurement

board has provided a commitment to increase our scholarship and bursary

they bring with them, but I think we can

methods to better reflect the realities that we are likely to be living with for

funding for 2022/23 to encourage

some time. How do we tackle that?

students to consider education that

We are the second largest association

will benefit the construction industry at

FINALLY, TELL ME A FUN FACT ABOUT

by membership in Canada, but we are

large.

YOURSELF.

be more fearless in the types of things that the ECA can do in the future.

Lastly, the ECA is also looking at

limited by regional representation, so

DJ: Fun fact about me? I really enjoy

bringing on more affinity programs to

obstacle course races. I have participated

better enhance our existing suite of

in dozens of different races, everything

services available to our members. Time

from Tough Mudder to Spartan races,

there. However, there are things we can

to innovate!

to the longer crucible challenges and

do and conversations we can have to

WHAT DO YOU PLAN TO BRING TO THE

there might be only so much we can do to impact – at a macro-economic scale – the supply chain issues that are out

provide greater efficiencies at our level.

TABLE OF THE ECA?

I think we all recognize that there

DJ: It’s been a little while since there has

is a labour shortage for construction

been someone in my particular role at

jobs in Canada. We recognize that

the ECA and while the association was

many of our members already have

operated very capably by our senior

the Sinister 7. All of them are pretty ridiculous and fun at the same time. Some of them have lasted 12 to 24 hours, so I guess you can say I’m comfortable with being uncomfortable and you have to be in order to finish some of these. I like to have a goal and I work well under

trouble attracting and retaining talent

leadership team in this time of vacancy, I

and given the forecasted growth in the

think we can really start looking forward

Edmonton region and the increase in

and seeing what else the ECA can do for

hour event where it could be painful for

the construction economy, they will

its members.

12 hours, you have to be well prepared,

face even greater competition for a

In short, I bring a culture of innovation.

deadlines. When you sign up for a 12-

so I love the motivation that gets put

diminishing labour force. I think our

The idea is that we want to create more

in front of you. I also enjoy a cold beer

biggest focus strategically is to try and

value and I’m not necessarily content

at the end of it. You really have to earn

move the needle in terms of being able

with just doing things because we have

that beer, whether it’s a two-hour event

to attract new people to construction as

always done them a certain way in the

or a 12-hour event. I’m looking forward

a career and to show the many different

past. I think the ECA has an innovation

to getting back into the circuit now that

opportunities that exist. So, our job with

imperative in order to be relevant to

things have opened up again. u

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MATT SCHELLENBERGER Director of Corporate Development

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Printing & Support Services

Procurement Manager

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Events Coordinator

Edmonton Construction Association

Communications & Marketing Coordinator

GABRIELA CRUZ

Administration & BuildWorks Support Coordinator


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CELEBRATING 70 YEARS! Over one hundred years ago, Charles Darwin noted something exceptional about human beings in scientific literature: our sense of direction. Believe it or not, our sense of direction sets us apart from other mammals and comes from our ability to sift through fine-grain environmental details to create an imaginary frame of reference in the spaces we inhabit. A lot of this has to do with our incredible sensory tools like sight, smell, hearing and so forth. However, it is the human capacity to imagine and remember that helps us find our way. An interesting component of the human sense of direction is our need to create wayfinding solutions to redirect ourselves and other humans back to points of interest, whether it be places to find food, water, shelter, or some other necessities. Human beings have always created systems of symbols and markers to remind ourselves where things are, and this art has evolved into the practice of wayfinding over time. The reality is that wayfinding is one of the most basic tools that sets human beings apart. We have always shaped our environment in imaginative ways to jog memories and signify to others where they are going. We have just gotten better, and better, at it with time. No longer is wayfinding only about our sense of direction, but now it has grown to include the creation of experiences within that movement. Through proper signage and architectural design, we can develop human emotions in certain spaces and these emotions are more likely to lead to the creation of memories. Behrends was founded in 1952 and is proudly owned and operated out of Edmonton, Alberta. Behrends began by specializing in designing and manufacturing cast bronze, aluminum, brass plaques, and signage. We’ve directed our skills and abilities toward a diverse variety of products. Over the past 70 years Behrends has grown to be a proven leader in the Sign Industry in Western Canada creating hundreds of donor and recognition walls and monuments, interpretive displays, custom 26 Edmonton Construction Association


signage, art pieces, wayfinding systems, and entry features and other diverse items spanning a wide gamut of forms and functions. Behrends consists of two locations – the Head Office & Manufacturing Plant in Edmonton, and a Sales Office in Calgary, Alberta. We’re a medium sized company, but large enough to meet the high quantity and high consistency demands of our larger clients, and small enough to build personal relationships with all those we serve. Our design department consists of 3 full-time designers with over 40 years of combined design experience. The expertise of these long-standing employees, alongside our dedication to keeping abreast of industry-relevant technological advances, are the reasons we can take on complicated and demanding projects confidently and turn out great results.

Through our 70-year history Behrends has been involved in many different projects in Alberta. Behrends has always approached projects with a consistent design philosophy, accurately applying brand strategies and experiential graphic design/visual information systems to effectively connect people to a place while paying close attention to how the form, materials and methods affect value, and no less importantly, the budget. Behrends approaches every project solution by first understanding three basic variables: 1. The appropriate interpretation of the project’s brand vision and strategy 2. The correct translation and understanding of the intended use of the site over time 3. Supporting a positive user experience through the architecture of visual information


CHALLENGES FACING THE EDMONTON CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY Over the past two years, the pandemic has caused a number of issues such as increased costs and delivery delays By Lisa Kopochinski

28

Edmonton Construction Association

Since the worldwide pandemic began more than two years ago, several concerns have continued with no apparent end in sight: cost increases of products and services in virtually every industry; a non-stop bottleneck in shipping networks; and a continuous disruption along international supply chains in the flow of goods. The pandemic has not only increased the cost of business operations, but has undercut efforts to manage inventories

The $15 million Edmonton Law Courts Building renovation that took place from 2018 to 2020. Kerr Interiors System’s main scope for this project included the bulkheads and drywall ceilings. PHOTO COURTESY OF KERR INTERIORS SYSTEM. LTD.

amid volatile swings in consumer demand. The construction industry has certainly seen its share of all of this and Edmonton is no exception. COST INCREASES AND DELAYS When it comes to material inflation— with respect to steel, glass, rebar, insulation, lumber, steel stud, M&E systems—Darryl Wiebe, president and chief estimator at Kerr Interiors System, Ltd. in Edmonton, says its material has increased approximately 30 per cent to 35 per cent over the last 18 months. “Steel stud has been the highest with a 140 per cent increase! This has caused us significant financial pain because we are in fixed-price contracts and owners— especially the Alberta Government—have been very unwilling to compensate contractors for the increased costs,” says Wiebe. “With respect to delivery delays, it has not been a significant issue for our company. However, all of our large



PHOTO COURTESY OF EXPLORE EDMONTON.

projects are behind schedule by at least

weeks before the team is to be mobilized

six months, and material availability is

on site.

part of that.” Kerri Hagen is manager, project

“That timeframe does not give sufficient space for us to produce our

development at A&H Steel in Edmonton.

shop drawings, ask RFIs and sometimes

She says from the perspective of an early

order specialty required items,” says

engaged on-site subtrade, the main issue

Hagen. “Additionally, if we have started

her team is battling is time. Often, they

construction on non-IFC drawings,

are faced with a project awarded only

we typically are issued multiple site

Designing with purpose. Building community. 30

Edmonton Construction Association

instructions and change directives where turnaround time on site is of the essence to keep the schedule.” She adds that not only do these “rushes” interrupt current workflow time for the company’s drafting and fabricating departments to get these rush orders completed and out the door, but on the back end the turnaround time for review and payment of their change orders for this rush work is 90 to 120 days on average. However, in her experience, she has found that constant communication with the client has proven to reduce some of the time constraints. Dustin Bennett is the internal operations manager at CSS Contracting Ltd. in Edmonton. He says with commercial roofing and siding-related materials—membranes, insulation, fasteners, adhesives, drywall, sheet metal, architectural siding, and more—there have been multiple acute price increases over the last 24 months, and more so focused in the last 12 to 18 months. “Manufacturers and suppliers are citing supply chain issues, transportation costs, and raw material cost increases as the primary reasons to justify their


Below: This angle shows the 3,000 mm depth of the footing weighing approximately 250,000 kgs. PHOTO COURTESY OF A&H STEEL.

A 3,000 mm deep base and dowels for a stair/elevator core in a 52-storey high-rise building in Edmonton that A&H Steel is currently constructing. PHOTO COURTESY OF A&H STEEL.

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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 31


Geometric specialty wood ceiling at the University of Alberta Dentistry Pharmacy project that Kerr Interiors System was involved in. PHOTO COURTESY OF KERR INTERIORS SYSTEM. LTD.

rapid increases in these manufactured products,” says Bennett. “The increases have been at unpredictable times/ intervals, higher rates, and more frequent than previous years.” Bennett says early purchase options can help alleviate some risk, but this comes with a significant cost impact and other risks. For example, suppliers are charging at the time of shipment, which means the purchaser has to take delivery of the materials in order to secure the price. “Many large-scale construction sites do not have the space or security to take possession of and store large amounts of material,” he adds. “Then there’s the added risk of security once that material is delivered and the risk of who is 32

Edmonton Construction Association

responsible for maintaining the security and condition of the material once it is stored on site.” Hagen can certainly relate to this and says, for lack of a better term, rebar escalation has been “bananas”, adding that the steel industry has experienced an unprecedented material escalation over the past 24 months. In 2021, the overall increase was 70 per cent. The contributing factors included low quantities of scrap metal availability during the pandemic; China recharging its construction industry and drastically increasing its demand for steel, and Canadian anti-dumping regulations. “To date, in 2022, we have seen an additional 30 per cent,” says Hagen. “Rebar prices are directly driven by scrap

metal prices. Also, unfortunately this year has been impacted by the invasion of Ukraine by Russia. In the last three months, we have seen some stabilization in the market, however, demand remains high and we do not anticipate prices to drop within the next 12 to 18 months.” There is also the matter of cash flow. For example, Bennett says that standard purchasing terms for wholesalers and manufacturers is payment within 30 days of delivery. This means that the subtrade who takes possession of materials early and delivers it to the site is responsible for paying the full amount within 30 days of receipt. “Many contracts are written in such a way that payment will not be released until the materials are incorporated into the project, which means that subtrades may be on the line to wait for payment from the contractor/owner until it is installed, which could be months down the road,” says Bennett. There are also costs associated with additional handling and logistics. For example, who is responsible for the condition of that material while in storage? Storage might be off site, which could include an insured warehouse or storage yard. There are the costs associated with those third parties. And do these costs offset the risk of increase? The other side of this coin pertains to material supply and availability. Early delivery may not be an option if the manufacturer cannot produce it early. In many cases, lead times are such that the materials aren’t available to meet even current modelled schedules. Chris Lane is vice-president/Edmonton area manager at EllisDon Construction. He says material escalation is having a major impact on the ability to accurately price construction projects. Throughout the pandemic, the global supply chain disruptions have resulted in substantial material shortages and procurement


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MANPOWER AVAILABILITY In addition to increased product costs and delayed deliveries, there has also been the issue of the availability of manpower, which is significant. “Material has been our biggest challenge the last two years, but we believe labour will be the biggest challenge for the next two years,” says Wiebe. He has already seen some unions sign new agreements for 15 per cent wage increases over three years in different trades and areas across Canada. Kerr Interiors System, Ltd. is non-union, but Wiebe says wages tend to generally follow, and is a guideline for the company. “We are expecting up to 15 per cent increases over the next two years and possibly higher,” says Wiebe. “We are also expecting some competitors and other contractors in the construction industry to fail over the next year or two due to labour shortages and further material price increases because they have been locked in to large, fixed-price contracts.” Lane adds that in this volatile market, it is imperative that the industry reinforces its risk management strategies and that it is the contractor’s responsibility to ensure that clients are aware that it is becoming increasingly impossible to predict pricing increases on construction materials. One way to help a construction project through these unpredictable times is for owners to enter into a cost-sharing arrangement, with subcontracts that are linked to the commodity pricing index for major elements. Steel, lumber, aluminum, and other volatile materials could have pricing that is tied to the commodity, and

29/03/13 2:09 AM


pricing fluctuations would be tracked up to the point of material order. “Any decrease or increase to the commodity price at the time of order would change the cost that the owner would pay for the work,” he says. “This open book collaborative arrangement should help to keep construction costs lower, since the responsibility for predicting the ‘cost of the unknown’ is removed at time of tender.” Bennett says labour costs are starting to creep up since increases in the cost of raw materials and commodities have persisted. This pass-down effect is starting to flow through to labour markets. “As the cost of living and cost to purchase goods increases, people will demand more compensation to maintain that quality of life,” says Bennett. “In the current state of the economy—where it seems there is a real strong recovery from the COVID-19 period – there is a high demand for labour and a rapid inflation in cost of living.” While there is usually a lag period before labour starts, this period seems to be over and people are realizing the demand for skilled workers outweighs the availability from the current labour pool. “Not only is this going to drive up costs through wage increases, but this will affect the amount of manpower levels a company has available to it as it creates instability in the workforce,” adds Bennett. “There is higher turnover as people move from one job to another in seek of higher wages, and unpredictability in the human resource levels at any given time resulting from it.” Hagen says A&H Steel has taken a proactive approach to help alleviate labour shortage risks by attending local trade shows, promoting its trade at high schools and trade organizations (such as Women Building Futures), seeking temporary foreign workers, and collaborating with local unions. CONTRACT MODELS To sum up, at this point in time, Kerr Interiors Systems, Ltd. will not sign

contracts for long-term projects. That is, more than nine months out. “My opinion has been that the construction industry has been broken for a long time, and the lowest bid-fixed price model is not a good way to build a project, and does not give the owner the best value,” says Wiebe. “Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) or Collaborative Management are much better models for building and I am hoping the current challenges force a change in the industry

to more of this type of collaborative construction.” Lane believes that greater collaboration between all construction parties is essential in today’s market, and that it is imperative that all parties are aware of the mass inflation on construction materials, as well as the damage this can do to any party involved on a project. “By having a collaborative contract delivery model, that engagement can ensure that all parties are determined to

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work together to lower construction price and provide better schedule certainty,” says Lane. “Traditional delivery models often place the contractors and owners on different sides of the table, and that can create difficulties in these uncertain times.” Hagen says A&H Steel is always open to opportunities where it can be engaged early with clients to provide advice on constructability for costs savings, mitigation of trade clash, and procurement risks. The company also

believes that collaboration and up-front communication is available no matter what contract model is chosen by the owner. Bennett says collaborative models should be more appealing in the current market as they better distribute the risks, as well as allow for more flexibility to manage and control a project. However, it can be difficult to sway away from the appeal of the straight risk pass down of a stipulated sum contract. He adds that these more collaborative

options do require a significant time and expertise investment on the owners’ behalf and not many owners are equipped to manage a collaborative type of delivery method. “That said, it is undoubtedly the best way to ensure everyone in the chain is sharing their appropriate exposure to the risks while maintaining reasonable business profits,” says Bennett. “Ultimately, it is the owner who is the only one benefiting from the end use of the facility.” u

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ACA ADVOCACY UPDATE Prompt Pay in force August 29, 2022 By Ken Gibson, Executive Director, Alberta Construction Association

Prompt pay comes into effect for contracts signed after August 29, 2022. Together with local construction associations, the Alberta Construction Association (ACA) coordinated educational webinars for members. Contact your local construction association for the most recent version of the Frequently Asked Questions Guide for Prompt Pay. Additional volumes of the FAQ and an updated ACA Plain Language Guide are in the works. The industry consortium of the ACA, Alberta Trade Contractors Coalition, Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, and the Consulting Engineers of Alberta continue to work towards submitting a proposal to government to act as a nominating authority to accredit prompt pay adjudicators and manage the adjudication process. The ACA is concerned that the proposed administrative responsibilities contemplated in the regulations run counter to the goal of affordable costs borne by parties to an adjudication. The ACA continues to lobby government to commit to comparable prompt pay and dispute resolution processes for projects under the Public Works Act. THREE BIG IDEAS FOR PUBLIC INFRASTRUCTURE TO ENABLE ECONOMIC RECOVERY AND GROWTH The ACA believes publicly funded infrastructure can be an enabler of economic recovery. Independent research in Canada and abroad has confirmed the importance of public infrastructure to boost economic productivity and support trade-enabled prosperity. The following issues limit the role of public 40

infrastructure in fostering economic recovery: • Lack of transparency and variability regarding future projects, funding, timing, delivery, project budget, impacting industry’s ability to plan. It takes years of steady work to produce skilled design consultants, tradespeople, and project managers. Swings in infrastructure spending inevitably lead to periods in which industry capacity can’t meet demand without price increases at the expense of taxpayers. • Relations that are contractual and transactional rather than collaborative. • Inappropriate allocation of risk designed to ensure the negative single occurrence is never repeated. • Contractual terms that are unquantifiable, uninsurable, and/or infeasible for the contractor to meet. • The revision of GoA agreements removing all forms of alternative dispute resolution, leaving the courts as the only option. • Lack of acceptance of industry recommendations to improve timely completion of projects. • GoA decision making is slow, impacting costs within a rigid delivery schedule. • Contractor selection primarily based on low price, treating construction as a commodity, rather than selection on best value and innovation, treating construction as a specialized service. The Red Tape Reduction Construction Industry Panel have consistently affirmed that industry’s concerns remain an urgent priority to resolve. In order for publicly funded infrastructure to fully contribute, there are three big ideas to address current

Edmonton Construction Association

constraints and unleash the full potential of this key enabler. The three mutually reinforcing ideas to address common issues are: 1. Certainty 2. Partnership 3. Value Possible approaches to achieve certainty, partnership, and value include: • Specifying a predictable long-term capital plan with certainty and consistency of funding • Utilizing asset management planning to inform the capital plan • Funding the capital plan – a look back at the 2003 Capital account • Utilizing a public utility model • Ongoing meaningful dialogue with industry to share multi-year capital programs; understand industry capacity and receive industry input on appropriate selection of form of project delivery • Moving to a suite of common contracts for the various forms of project delivery for vertical infrastructure across public owners. This common suite of contracts must address inappropriate risk allocation and onerous/infeasible contract terms by working towards modified CCDC contracts to ensure contracts are balanced across contracting parties • Independent procurement/project management agencies • Adoption of collaborative forms of project delivery as the standard • Enhancing the opportunity for local knowledge and services in delivering on Alberta’s infrastructure needs • Moving away from low bid to best value procurement


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“ It is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean, and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere, and biosphere have occurred... Human-induced climate change is already affecting many weather and climate extremes in every region across the globe.”

• Managing the impact of unplanned material price escalation MULTI-YEAR MAJOR RETROFIT PROGRAM ESSENTIAL The sixth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change working group report released in August 2021 makes for sober reading. In the words of the panel: “It is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean, and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere, and biosphere have occurred... Humaninduced climate change is already affecting many weather and climate extremes in every region across the globe.” The Government of Canada has committed to significant reductions in

greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and to a schedule of increasing carbon levies. Alberta is Canada’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases. Alberta residential and commercial buildings are among the highest GHG emitters per square metre of building area across Canada. In the last 10 years, extreme flooding, hail, and wildfires have destroyed numerous Alberta buildings with insured losses of $7 billion. While there has been a promising start within Alberta and much success to build on, one national estimate is that current retrofit rates are below one per cent for low-rise residential buildings and 1.4 per cent of commercial building floor area, with retrofits achieving shallow rather than deep energy savings. Building retrofits generate

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employment and GDP, with benefits spread across the entire province. Annual public and private costs totaling $5-$9 billion per year over the next 30 to 15 years can achieve a zero-carbon building stock for Alberta. The ACA will be working with others to advocate that all three levels of government enact a coherent and mutually reinforcing policy framework and share of funding of a major building retrofit multi-year program with annual progress reporting to the target of a zero-carbon Alberta building stock by 2050. Retrofits should encompass resilience to natural disasters given the changes in climate. Sustained multiyear public and private investment is necessary to allow the development of a construction workforce skilled in delivering high-performance building retrofits along with the supply chain to provide the necessary materials and technologies. One promising program is offered by SOFIAC. SOFIAC is leveraging private and public funding to act as a super energy services company that allows aggregation of small projects. SOFIAC is interested in expanding operations into Alberta. The ACA is advocating that government incent SOFIAC as an additional funding source for Alberta projects. WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT Construction’s contribution to Alberta’s future prosperity is dependent upon the right numbers of skilled trades professionals with the right skills at the right time. The ACA plans to engage with industry to identify needed policies and gaps in programs to promote development of local sources of workers, improve interprovincial mobility, and optimize the use of foreign talent. The ACA is advocating for a stronger role for industry under the new Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship Education Act. The ACA applauds the provincial government for financial support of a number of ACA pilot projects to develop skills and recruit and retain workers. u


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A NEW LEADER IN EDMONTON Breaking Ground sits down with Mayor Amarjeet Sohi to discuss construction in Edmonton during his first year in office

The City of Edmonton swore in their 36th mayor on October 26, 2021. Mayor Amarjeet Sohi previously served as the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and the Minister of Natural Resources, overseeing billions of dollars in Canada’s economic future. Mayor Sohi knows the importance of building up Edmonton’s economic development. Previously serving on city council for eight years, he was instrumental in advocating for investment in the city’s LRT system, as well as the approval of the Valley Line to southeast Edmonton, which is expected to open this summer. He also supported downtown revitalization and helped build recreational facilities, a seniors’ centre, libraries, and a multicultural centre for Edmonton Mill Woods.

We sat down with Mayor Sohi recently and chatted about what the City is doing in terms of supporting Edmonton contractors and the construction community, major projects on the horizon, and more. As inflation and cost escalation is now a major consideration in today’s economy, how are city council and project delivery teams preparing for the risks associated with project budgets and risk management? Mayor Amarjeet Sohi (AS): I have heard the phrase that in Edmonton there are two seasons: “winter” and “construction”, but I see that as a positive for us. Every time I see construction happening, I think about the local jobs and economic boost they bring, which

helps us recover from the pandemic. Part of our economic recovery strategy is about making sure we are reducing risk for the construction industry and keeping communications open. Our City administration has built solid relationships with industry partners that have allowed us to ensure projects happen smoothly. We know that the earlier contractors are involved in City projects the better, so we have worked to involve industry during the design process to help us identify potential risks and mitigate them before shovels hit the ground. We also know that shorter procurement lag times lower the risk for everyone involved. The City has prioritized procurement of materials with long lead times to lock-in prices, and we have modernized our procurement

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process to shorten the wait between procurement and contract award times. I am proud of our efforts to manage risk and support industry by addressing uncertainties in the markets and ensuring that City projects are focused on efficiency and predictability.

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One of your election platforms was to fight to protect the environment. What plans does the City have to improve the sustainability of its existing and new infrastructure? How can the ECA and industry experts’ partner with the City to work on issues like climate change? Climate adaptation and resiliency is core to the success and safety of our city. It is my job as a leader to ensure the City is doing everything we can to mitigate climate risks now, and to make sure what we build can withstand the effects of climate change in the future. Edmonton has an ambitious Climate Resilience Policy that includes goals to set a design and construction standard of emission-neutral buildings for all new City buildings, and proactively retrofit City buildings to reduce GHG emissions. Our City administration is here to support and empower businesses as they respond to changing demands from consumers and regulators. I look to industry experts and businesses to speak to climate issues by participating in our Corporate Climate Leaders Program. By leaning on each other for best practices and lessons learned, industry and City administration can make decisions that benefit our neighbourhoods and our business community. We are poised to be a green construction hub, thanks to our local industry that champions innovative techniques and a climate-resilient mindset. I am also glad to see the Edmonton Construction Association play an active role as part of our Emissions Neutral Building Industry Advisory Group to help advance emissions neutral building goals. It’s so important to get critical mass when shifting an industry towards a new way of thinking, and I’m grateful that we have so many amazing partners in


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While the projects I highlighted here are largescale, flagship initiatives from the City, I want to mention that there are thousands of small projects that are not glamorous, but still incredibly impactful.

Edmonton’s construction industry to help us reach our climate goals. With respect to a business-friendly approach to permits, can you: A) Provide our readers with an update on your commitment to review permit and inspection delivery guarantees and timelines? It is very important to me to reduce barriers for home owners, businesses, and industry when it comes to regulations in the City’s control. We have made big progress in recent years and are currently ranked second highest overall out of 23 Canadian cities for requirements, fees, and approval timelines. We have also cut timelines for building permits in half thanks to process improvements and automation. But we need to focus on guaranteeing service levels for permitting and licensing to give Edmontonians certainty where we can. My recent motion asked the City administration to create an approach that will establish and implement these service level guarantees, giving applicants more certainty around approval timelines. These timelines will be made available to the public on edmonton.ca by the end of Q2 2022. B) What other ways has the City been working to reduce red tape or innovate in order to promote new construction projects? There have been several innovative changes made to reduce red tape for new construction projects on the macro and micro level. Edmonton’s Zoning Bylaw renewal is not only about making zoning easier to understand, but to also 48

allow for more flexibility and diverse uses in a single zone. We have also embraced technological innovations to eliminate extraneous inspection wait times and enhance our online self-serve application portal to improve online application usability. For me, reducing red tape is about listening to what industry identifies as an issue and tackling the low-hanging fruit so the City can get out of the way of new projects. Can you talk a little bit about some exciting or transformative infrastructure projects that are underway or on the near horizon for the city? The next five years are going to be transformative for Edmonton. We have so many new and upcoming projects that will change the face of our city in a really positive way. I’m excited for our transportation projects, like the 50 Street Widening and Railway Grade Separation that will be complete in 2026, the expansion of our active transportation infrastructure network planning by the end of 2022, and the Valley Line West project that will see a 14-kilometre lightrail extension from 102 Street downtown to Lewis Farms. I’m also particularly excited for the Blatchford Development on the former City Centre Airport site that will turn the site into a sustainable mixed-use community. Blatchford will be a worldleading mixed-use community for up to 30,000 people. I commend the builders who dove into this project and have shared their learnings with the City as we navigate this innovative model. This walkable, transit-oriented, family-friendly and sustainable community as set out in Council’s vision, will be built over 20 to 25 years. While the projects I highlighted here are large-scale, flagship initiatives from the City, I want to mention that there are thousands of small projects that are not glamorous, but still incredibly impactful. Projects like renewal of sidewalks, bridges, fire halls, police stations, rec centres, and building missing links in our

Edmonton Construction Association

active transportation network and safer intersections and crossing all help us reach our climate goals and the vision set out in our Safe Mobility Strategy and City Plan. An important aspect of the City Plan is the Affordable Housing Strategy. How would this include building diversity and culture into communities? Since the beginning of my term, I have focused on housing as a tool to make Edmontonians’ lives better. By providing incentives like land, grants, and other supports, the City has encouraged the development of affordable housing in all our neighbourhoods. The City of Edmonton is on track to meet its five-year goal to create 2,500 new units of affordable housing throughout the City, including 600 supportive housing units. This is a great start to address the lack of housing investments in Edmonton from the last 30 years. But, we need to do more in our next budget cycle to ensure this progress doesn’t end here. In the upcoming months, council will be setting new targets and reviewing new strategies around affordable housing. We will address issues not just around overall affordable housing goals, but around the integration of diversity and culture, including the development of an Indigenous-led affordable housing strategy. We know housing is not a level playing field. Particular groups face higher rates of core housing need and housing instability. It’s crucial that we understand what their specific needs are, and how we can remove barriers and help them move towards social equity. This could look like more multi-bedroom units to accommodate larger families and multigenerational family situations, or to increase the number of accessible units that can support the needs of Edmontonians living with disabilities. u


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EMISSIONS NEUTRAL BUILDING IN THE CITY OF EDMONTON In the face of the global climate

lower operating costs, minimize their

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adopted several strategies and action

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Edmonton Construction Association

• Buildings are continually improved for increased climate resilience. An emissions-neutral building has been defined as “a highly energy-efficient building which uses only renewable energy for its operations, or produces and supplies on-site renewable energy in an amount sufficient to offset the annual greenhouse gas emissions associated with its operations”. While this requirement can be achieved in the design and construction of new buildings, it becomes more challenging to achieve emissions neutrality in the renewal of older facilities. EDMONTON EXPO CENTRE The Edmonton EXPO Centre is currently undergoing major rehabilitation. The primary goal of the Edmonton EXPO Centre Renewal project is to develop a


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prioritized list of rehabilitation upgrades. Early investigations identified like-for-like upgrade paths that deviate from bringing the facility in line with an emissionsneutral future. Those immediate renewal priorities were not, in most cases, aligned with long-term GHG reduction targets established by the City of Edmonton. To align rehabilitation priorities with GHG targets, an evaluation of options, costs, energy performance, and goals was undertaken to identify a plausible path to emissions-neutral.

Identifying energy-saving opportunities and the pre-emptive implementation of energy-saving systems and components as part of the Edmonton EXPO Centre Renewal project is essential to achieving the City of Edmonton’s long-term goals. While the GHG reduction goal is critical, the operational and rehabilitation objectives cannot be secondary. These are intertwined with the GHG targets extending beyond the current renewal

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Edmonton Construction Association

project scope and form a complex upgrade path. Sequential upgrades achieving long-term GHG objectives must be aligned with existing budgets and rehabilitation demands without deviating from the potential path to attaining GHG reduction targets. In identifying critical rehabilitation tasks and upgrades to meet operational needs, identifying constructability sequences and path dependencies inform scoping decisions as the project moves forward. Conventional renewal projects require the replacement of equipment with finishing for ‘like-for-like’ value. This approach does not address the need for, or enable upgrading equipment to meet the City’s long-term emissionsneutral targets. The Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) process enabled the City of Edmonton and the Edmonton EXPO operations team to work with engineers and trade partners to analyze, cost, and prioritize upgrades early in the project timeline that fit into the long-term goals, GHG objectives, and current budget. Identifying potential upgrade options and alternatives was a key step in developing attainable goals that align with the City of Edmonton policy. The identified options had to achieve GHG targets, as well as meet rehabilitation priorities while adhering to short-term budgets and forming the baseline for long-term funding plans. The Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) team strategized upgrades based on current technology, focusing on mechanical, electrical, and architectural systems that could be implemented or optimized to reduce GHG emissions. BLATCHFORD FIRE STATION Located within the Blatchford neighbourhood, this fire station will be a critical amenity within this peoplefirst community where up to 30,000 Edmontonians will call home. The vision of Blatchford is a sustainable community that is carbon neutral, uses 100 per cent renewable energy, and minimizes its ecological footprint. The blueprint for


the Blatchford neighbourhood includes

cooling, increased insulation values of

LRT, renewable energy, and a network of

exterior walls, and roof thickness and high-efficiency lighting and equipment. The Windermere Fire Station targets a LEED Gold standard and will be designed to achieve 40 per cent or greater energy efficiency and 40 per cent or greater greenhouse gas reduction than the National Building Code of Canada for Buildings (NEBC 2011). It shall not exceed 80-kilowatt hours per square metre for annual heating demand. The City of Edmonton’s approach to

green corridors and park spaces. Aligning with this, the Climate Resilience Policy and the City of Edmonton’s Climate Resilience Commitment to reducing emissions by 35 per cent by 2025, 50 per cent by 2030, and being a carbon-neutral community by 2050, the Blatchford Fire Station project will include several sustainability targets and strategies. Emissions-neutral design strategies

working towards an emissions-neutral state for municipally-owned facilities is intended to take into account the renewal of assets and new builds. This approach is geared to set up City facilities for success in the future, with a path that leads to emissions-neutral and an overall reduction in GHG emissions. Retrofitting all facilities at once is cost-prohibitive, but we can set ourselves on a path that helps future generations achieve the intended outcomes of our forward-looking policies. u

include using natural or recycled materials, solar, increased insulation values of walls and roofs, and energyefficient lighting. A Climate Risk and Vulnerability Assessment will inform the design and construction to ensure the mitigation of any risks and impacts of climate change. This project will also have an Embodied Carbon Analysis, which analyzes the building’s initial carbon footprint. With the Blatchford Fire Station in the initial planning stages, the City can include preparations for a future electrified fleet and a connection that is ready to plug into the District Energy Sharing System in Blatchford. WINDERMERE FIRE STATION The Windermere Fire Station is under construction with a target completion of Q1 2023. Located in the Ambleside Community in southwest Edmonton, this fire station will be a three-bay drive-through fire station and is the first net-zero energy building for the City of Edmonton. The project was designed prior to the current Climate Resilience Policy and as such, reflects previous sustainability targets and approaches. This project targets a net-zero energy operation where the total amount of energy used on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created on-site. Strategies for this building include optimized rooftop solar generation, natural light in the work

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PCL MARKS 100TH ANNIVERSARY

In 1922, Edmonton was a place of opportunity when Poole Construction—later known as PCL—was awarded the contract for the Edmonton Public Library by the City of Edmonton.

Over the last century, PCL’s Edmonton Buildings and Civil District has constructed some of the region’s most foundational projects – and helped turn Edmonton into a world-class city By Lisa Kopochinski

This year marks the 100th anniversary

International Airport, ICE District and

we’re grateful that we can continue to

of PCL Construction’s Edmonton

Rogers Place, and PCL’s first Edmonton

grow with this community. PCL’s legacy

Buildings and Civil District operating

project, the Edmonton Public Library.

is our people – and the impact they

“We are so proud of our history

have each had in their communities

in Edmonton, Northern Alberta, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut. For 100 years and more than 4,800

in Edmonton and the people and

– and our 100 years of history are a

partnerships that have allowed us to

testament to that legacy.”

construction projects, Edmonton

play a significant role in building the

Buildings and Civil has constructed

Alberta Capital Region,” says Jason

some of the most significant

Portas, vice-president and district

Edmonton was a bustling frontier

developments in the Alberta Capital

manager, Edmonton Buildings and

city when PCL – then known as Poole

Region, including West Edmonton

Civil. “As we reflect on our 100 years in

Construction – was awarded the

Mall, the University of Alberta, the

Edmonton, we feel incredibly fortunate

contract for the Edmonton Public

Stollery Children’s Hospital, Edmonton

to be a part of such a rich history, and

Library by the City of Edmonton in 1922.

56

Edmonton Construction Association

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Owner Ernest Poole sent his trusted employee, Claude Alston, to open the company’s first local office in Room 733 of the old Tegler Building at 101 Street and 102 Avenue. The Poole Construction job shack housed the project team. (A recreation of the original job shack was made years later and remains in Fort Edmonton Park today). A decade later, Edmonton became PCL’s official headquarters. That same year, in 1932, Poole Construction was a founder of the Supporting higher education in Edmonton, the campus built by PCL in 1993 included 12 cast-inplace concrete towers that are a feature in the downtown core.

Edmonton Builders Exchange (renamed the Edmonton Construction Association in 1965), becoming one of 43 companies to commit to the growth of the industry for the success of all. This commitment helped form the collaborative culture that carried PCL forward into the future. Today, that spirit is more evident than ever. PCL is 100 per cent employee-owned, with more than 4,500 employees and 30 offices across North America, Australia, and the Caribbean. With Edmonton as its headquarters, PCL continues to be driven by the sense of collaboration and mutual interest

1997 saw PCL complete construction on a local cultural institution, the Francis Winspear Centre for Music, which combined cutting-edge acoustics with the beauty of classic concert halls.

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“The district developed experience, knowledge, and partnerships that transcended individuals. It became essential for PCL, setting the stage for excellence and expansion to other markets.” Partnerships with organizations such as the Edmonton Construction Association have been vital to this success, strengthening PCL’s presence in the Alberta capital region while fostering values and commitments that helped the company expand. GREAT ACHIEVEMENTS Beyond the developments cited earlier, PCL’s Edmonton Buildings and

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Edmonton Construction Association


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With over 18,000 seats for hockey games, the new arena built by PCL in 2016 is a centralized hub for the ICE District and brings together all types of fans to enjoy premium entertainment.

PCL leaders have been board chairs, while many more have been board members. Past board chairs include: • John Poole (1952) • Alec Shaw (1955) • Bob Stollery (1961) • Jock Dawe (1969) • Nick Driedger (1979, 1980)

“ While the day-to-day workings of the ECA and the services provided by the association have evolved over the years, the purpose of PCL’s involvement remains unchanged as an advocate and leader for the betterment of the industry and all who are a part of it.” – Jason Portas, PCL vice-president and district manager, Edmonton Buildings and Civil.

• Peter Beaupre (1993) • Alan Kuysters (2017) Bob Stollery, one of these visionary leaders, joined PCL in 1949 and became president nearly 20 years later, in 1978. Stollery was an integral part of the company’s legacy of employee ownership and community, and former owner John Poole was quoted as

Civil district has been a crucial partner

districts, and it laid the groundwork for

in some of the most foundational

the company’s adaptive and responsive

projects in Edmonton and its

approach to business continuity over

surrounding communities.

the decades. Additionally, leadership

saying, “The smartest thing we ever did was to hire Bob Stollery.” Most recently, PCL operations manager, Ben Wagemakers, was elected

By 1950, PCL had worked on the

from this district was instrumental

as an ECA board member, carrying

University of Alberta’s Student Union

in diversifying PCL to become an

forward PCL’s representation for the

Building and Rutherford Library, the

employee-owned company in 1978.

industry and the association.

Rossdale Water Treatment Plant, the

That vision remains representative of

Provincial Government Administration

its culture of ownership even today, and

industry is the duty of the collective,

Building, and the Hotel Macdonald.

is demonstrated in every aspect of the

and representation on the ECA board

In 1952, PCL completed the Canadian

company.

is crucial for that,” Wagemakers says.

Forces Base in Cold Lake. Over the

PCL AND THE ECA

following decades, the company worked on projects for many post-secondary institutions, malls, and hospitals, as

“Advancing the construction

“Fostering strong associations that will PCL’s strong relationship with the Edmonton Construction Association

ensure mutual benefit and a healthy industry environment is how we can all advance our business.”

spans nine decades, and engaging in

well as major infrastructure projects.

the betterment of the construction

PCL’s segue into new markets – notably

industry has been an important part

CLAUDE ALSTON AWARD Additionally, PCL leader Alan

its venture to go “north of 60”, and

of PCL’s leadership culture for many

Kuysters, vice-president and project

the acquisition of Forest Construction

years. Many PCL leaders have served on

director, was recently presented with

Limited in 1998 – were significant to

the ECA’s board as directors, providing

the ECA’s Claude Alston Award in 2022.

the sustainability and growth of PCL’s

both input and leadership to those who

The award recognizes leaders at PCL

business.

became board chairs during their tenure

in Edmonton who contribute time and

with the ECA.

energy to the ECA and the construction

Edmonton Buildings and Civil is the oldest of PCL’s continuous operating 60

Edmonton Construction Association

Over the history of the ECA, seven

industry in Edmonton and area.


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www.donalcowestern.com ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 61


In 2007, PCL completed Alberta Transportation’s first project to be developed under a Design-Build-Finance-Operate (DBFO) model of public-private partnership (P3) by the province.

PCL built the new terminal expansion of the EIA South Terminal building in 2012, adding seven new gates.

The Claude Alston Award is the ECA’s

The Claude Alston Award is the ECA’s highest honour, given in recognition of an individual’s distinguished contribution to the Edmonton construction community. This award allows the ECA to celebrate and honour extraordinary leaders who contribute to the common good of the Edmonton construction sector.

highest honour, given in recognition of an individual’s distinguished contribution to the Edmonton construction community. The ECA Board of Directors created the award in 1975. This award allows the ECA to celebrate and honour extraordinary leaders who contribute to the common good of the Edmonton construction sector. The award is named for Claude William Alston (1883-1975), the man who opened PCL’s first local office in 1922. Alston was a charter member of the Edmonton Builders Exchange and

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1960. Shortly after he passed away in 1975, the ECA Board of Directors developed criteria for a special award in Alston’s name. The last time this prestigious award was presented to a leader from PCL was in 1977, when it was awarded to Bob Stollery. “Being recognized by your peers for your ideas and thoughts, and for the time you’ve given to the industry, is

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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 63


and suppliers freely give their time and

in our industry – change,” says Chris

energy to the industry and community

Gower, PCL Canadian Buildings COO.

each and every day. To be singled out

However, the one thing that won’t

among your peers and recognized

change is PCL’s commitment to its

with the Claude Alston Award is very

community – whether through its

humbling. I am forever grateful to

projects or its dedication to associations

my many friends in the construction

such as the ECA. PCL Canadian

industry, the time we had together

operations COO Mike Wieninger sums

building Edmonton, and to the ECA for

up the company’s philosophy.

inviting me to be as involved as I was in the association.”

“We take pride in our projects, but we also ask ourselves, ‘What do they mean to our community?’ We’ve partnered

A SUCCESSFUL FUTURE As for what the future holds, the

64

Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity

company remains committed to

to our 50-plus-year partnership with

advancing the construction industry

United Way – but beyond financial

forward – both for Edmonton Buildings

contributions, we help out in the

and Civil and across all PCL’s operations.

community itself. Whether it’s our

“Construction is a dynamic industry. The 37-storey office building and retail complex, completed by PCL in 1982, was the tallest building in Edmonton for 29 years.

with many organizations – from the

projects or charitable endeavours, it’s

We will continue to build with

incredibly rewarding to know that our

excellence and embrace innovation to

families, friends, and community will

adapt and respond to the one constant

benefit.” u

Edmonton Construction Association


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qualimet.ca ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 65


AFFIDAVITS As part of your ECA membership benefits, a free Commissioner for Oaths service is available to ECA members that require a signature on associated forms. If you have any further questions regarding ECA’s commissioning process, please contact us by email: contact@edmca.com.

ECA Fleet Discount Program With the ECA fleet discount program, ECA members have access to substantial discounts and additional concessions. “The ECA discount that I got, last time around, was better than my fleet rate. If you’re a company and you have an employee who wants to buy a new car, that ECA discount is a great perk to offer your employee.” -

Andrew Hildebrand, Midwest Developments

ECA members have access to substantial savings on vehicle purchase and rentals, through our association partnerships with Ford, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Nissan. Program terms vary by dealership. Learn more at edmca.com or call 780.483.1130

ROOM BOOKINGS Members can take advantage of using our ECA classrooms, boardroom and event spaces at no charge! We have a space for you to meet with a client or two. Spaces for a 24-person workshop. Even a space for a 60-person meeting! Rooms are available M-F, 8:00 am- 4:00 pm (subject to availability) Bookings are free to ECA members (contact us for non-member rates) Rooms can be used for meetings (planning, sales, safety, etc.) and training. Set-up, hospitality, and clean-up services are not provided Contact gabriela.cruz@edmca.com or by phone 780-483-1130 for more information.


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VERSUS: ON HOUSING By Jason Syvixay

Versus is a special Breaking Ground series that brings together the ideas and perspectives of those involved in land development – the developers, builders, tradespeople, constructors, architects, engineers, planners, dreamers, and city-builders who want to see the Edmonton Metropolitan Region grow and thrive. They’re hedging big bets on the city and the communities we know and love, and have a hot-take or two on what’s needed to accelerate change. A battle of the minds – where all of us, and our region, win.

WHAT ACTIONS CAN WE TAKE TO RESPOND TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S FUNDING ANNOUNCEMENT FOR MORE HOUSING SUPPLY?

We need to attract more people to the city. That pool of human resource capital can help contribute to our industry. David Johnson, President, Edmonton Construction Association

We need certainty around infrastructure capacity and a predictable funding mechanism to support the inevitable upgrades needed for medium-scale redevelopment. Chelsey Jersak, Founder of Situate Inc., and Chair of Infill Development in Edmonton Association (IDEA)

We need to understand the pressures of a higher-cost environment, and how those drivers are headwinds against affordability. We need to ask ourselves, what happens if we don’t do something here? Mike Kohl, Vice-President, Brookfield Residential, and Urban Development Institute – Edmonton Metro (UDI-EM) Past Chair

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We need to ensure our regulatory environment allows for market affordable, ground-oriented housing that most Canadians are looking for. We should continue to push for zoning that enables innovation around the product types that the market wants, at the price points that customers can afford. Laura Bruno, CEO, CHBA – Edmonton Region (CHBA-ER)

We need to address construction and material cost escalations – as they are growing impediments to housing affordability. Anand Pye, Executive Director, NAIOP Edmonton

We need to lead with one narrative – all of us working together to identify solutions, efficiencies, and different delivery models. Derek Ciezki, Partner, SMP Engineering, and Chair of Edmonton Construction Association Board of Directors

ONE QUESTION, A FLOOD OF IDEAS A conversation in early May of this year with some of the brightest minds in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region prompted practical ideas for our cities’ most pressing issue – housing. The question raised: what actions can we take to respond to the federal government’s funding announcement for more housing supply? From zoning reform to infrastructure

CONVERGING SOLUTIONS - Increase education around opportunities - Attract and retain skilled labour - Track data to identify issues and opportunities - Meet or exceed intensification targets - Nurture business-friendly environment - Improve policy, regulation, processes, and timelines - Enhance the image of the city, specifically the downtown - Address escalating construction and material costs

investments to fiscal tools, our inaugural Versus panel presented a range of strategies to help ramp-up housing developments in Edmonton and communities across the region. The panel included developers,

million new homes by 2031, which would

• Derek Ciezki, partner of SMP

require a doubling of housing starts to

Engineering and chair of CE

about 400,000 units per year over the

In April, the Government of Canada released its annual budget, which, among

next decade. While welcoming news, city

engineers, planners, industry veterans,

many other priorities, consisted of a

builders across municipalities have been

and business leaders:

$4 billion Housing Accelerator Fund.

left wondering – what’s next?

•D avid Johnson, president of ECA

While specific details are forthcoming,

•C helsey Jersak, founder of Situate Inc.,

it is anticipated to support an annual

the Housing Accelerator Fund will be

per-door incentive for municipalities,

implemented, specifically what projects

•M ike Kohl, vice-president of Brookfield

or upfront funding for investments

it will likely fund, and how municipalities

Residential and past chair of UDI-EM

in municipal housing planning and

can access it.

and chair of IDEA

Kohl called for more details on how

•L aura Bruno, CEO of CHBA-ER

delivery processes to speed up housing

“We want to collectively see this

•A nand Pye, executive director of NAIOP

development. The federal government

money come into our city and region,”

estimates a need to build at least 3.5

said Kohl. “More clarity would enable

Edmonton

ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 69


us at the local level, public and private

through CMHC (Canada Mortgage and

they may be interested in considering

sectors combined, to proactively prepare

Housing Corporation) are positive steps

careers in land development and

strategies and solutions.”

in the right direction.

construction.

“They have acknowledged that

Kohl adds that it’s a sizable fund,

“The more people we can get to move

but we’re going to need to identify

housing supply is critical in addressing

to the city, the greater the pool of human

multipliers of investment. “What we’re

the housing crisis,” said Pye. “That’s

resource capital that we have to our

good at is in identifying catalyst projects

key, especially as we continue to see

industry,” said Johnson.

that can further attract additional private

strong demand and forecast increasing

sector investment,” he says.

immigration.” For Johnson, newcomers to Canadian

Pye acknowledged that federal funding and new financing programs

cities are a tremendous opportunity and

While Edmonton has seen positive strides in meeting its intensification targets, Jersak noted how several barriers to housing affordability persist across core and mature neighbourhoods. “We need more certainty around water, drainage, and power capacity, as well as funding commitments to upgrade these important services,” Jersak said. “Without it, we’re not going to get the mediumscale development we need in order to maintain housing affordability.” With an emboldened goal of 50 per cent infill city-wide – a doubling of Edmonton’s original target set in 2010 – infrastructure investments will need to be thoughtfully considered and strategically invested to accommodate new development and one million more people. “The answer isn’t only about building more housing. It’s about the infrastructure we invest in – both in terms of pipes in the ground and transportation infrastructure, or how we move around our city,” Jersak added. “These improvements lay a firm foundation, they set the stage for more housing.” Bruno shared with the panelists her view that Edmonton is on a positive

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Edmonton Construction Association

trajectory – the conversation has shifted, and many are seeing the benefits of new ideas that help enable growth. She challenged the industry to continue to advocate for more permissive policies, regulations, and practices in communities across the region. “We need to maintain our advantage of housing affordability by pushing innovation and outside-the-box thinking,” said Bruno.


In 2018, Edmonton made semi-

that affect affordability and housing

detached and duplex housing permissible

supply – policies, labour, infrastructure

in single-detached residential zones, as

gaps, construction, and material cost.

well as allowing basement and garden suites to coexist as additional dwellings in the same lot. In 2020, Edmonton’s

❑ ourApproved industry to meet the demand and ❑ aspiration Approved with Changes of our governments for more ❑ Please Provide New Proof

3 rd PROOF

city council unanimously approved the removal of parking minimums 10221 123 Street NW

city-wide. Parking Edmonton, AB T5Nsupply 1N3 is often a Tel: 780.451.1379 | Fax: 780.482.5417 financial constraint for developers, which Toll Free: 1-866-451-1379

inadvertently leads to unaffordable

housing for the end user. These small, yet powerful, gestures, the panelists agreed, have of led3to Edmonton one of the A maximum proofs will bebeing provided. most affordable places to live in the

Darren McPherson To: _________________________________ world – as a mix of housing types can be Kehoe Eqipment At: _________________________________ built to suit a diversity of people. Wed Jun 22/16 Date: _____________________________

To maintain this competitive edge,

1 Page 1 of: _________________________

Kohl noted “three important drivers to

Jun 23/16 Please return by: Thur ___________________

enable more housing in our region – ease

Erin Slobodian From: _____________________________

of doing business, cost of doing business,

July 2016 Issue: _____________________________

andVertical the vibrancy of our city.” 1/3 Size: ______________________________

He added how there are many drivers

Please Sign and Fax Back 780-482-5417 Please check:

❑ ❑ ❑ ❑ ❑

“We need to collectively tell the story Please indicatethe version: ___________ and highlight challenges facing

housing,” said Kohl.

Signature: It’s not_________________________ only up to municipalities Name: ____________________________ though, Ciezki argued. Date: _____________________________

“We have a responsibility as an

SIGNING: industryBEFORE to educate ourselves of the Please read the disclaimer. Should you have opportunities, communicate with any questions, please contact our office.

stakeholders to define what success looks like, and to know the associated risks and challenges – so we can attract investments near and far.”

Syvixay is Urban YourJason signature indicates you Development accept full responsibility for theMetro’s final copy Institute – Edmonton director of and ad layout. Please ensure the metro strategy and advocacy. He is an company name, address, phone urban planner and PhD candidate who number, etc. are correct - use the provided checklist. has led policy and programs related to

Every effort has been made to ensure infill, zoning, downtown, and equity. u all details of your ad are correct. Odvod Publishing does not assume responsibility for any errors once the client has signed off on the proof. NOTE: Colour may not be exactly as shown in the final printed product.

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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 71


Visit ownersforum.ca

The Infrastructure Owners Forum was launched in 2017 to help those in the Owner community to better collaborate, build understanding and connect, with the purpose of improved integration across the construction continuum, and quality outcomes for the entire construction sector. The group meets bi-annually and now includes over 20 public owners and several developers meeting with industry to tackle common challenges.

Visit ownersforum.ca

Electrical Contracting Communications Security CCTV/CATV Telephone Service & Maintenance Fire Alarm Systems Wireless Systems Access Control Design Build

www.canem.com 780.454.0381

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Edmonton Construction Association


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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 73


The Owners Forum helps to raise the bar in construction and educate each other so that everyone can all work more collaboratively for better outcomes, while also building strong relationships.

Sponsored by Terracon Geotechnique, the ECA and Owners Forum Leadership Team were pleased to welcome over 50 leaders from the owners, AEC sector, and related industries on April 21, 2022.

THE APRIL 2022 INFRASTRUCTURE OWNERS FORUM The ECA was excited to host the first in-person Infrastructure Owners Forum meeting in almost two years, which discussed many of the issues facing Alberta’s construction sector today

By Paul Adair

First launched in 2017, the Edmonton

construction), over 50 architecture,

achieve together and move the needle

Construction Association’s Infrastructure

engineering, and construction (AEC)

here in Alberta’s construction industry.”

Owners Forum is a unique opportunity

firms, and six partner associations.

to collaborate, build understanding, and

“Through presentations and break-

The Owners Forum helps to raise the bar in construction and educate each

connect with construction stakeholders,

out sessions, Owners Forum is really

other so that everyone can all work more

with the goal to generate high-quality

designed to bring together public

collaboratively for better outcomes, while

outcomes for the entire construction

and private owners to engage around

also building strong relationships.

sector. The Forum has come a long

complex construction challenges,” says

way from where it began, and today it

Matt Schellenberger, ECA director of

are just going to be that much more

is represented by more than 25 Alberta

corporate development. “Owners Forum

difficult to manage,” says Derek Ciezki,

owners (public and private buyers of

is a chance to ask ourselves what we can

partner at SMP Engineering.

74

Edmonton Construction Association

“Without these relationships, projects


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Where the Owners Forum has traditionally focused on public ownership, the event has recently positioned itself to take in a broader perspective from across the breadth of the construction sector and incorporate more input from the private sector.

NEW TOPIC AREA (BUCKET) 1 INDUSTRY GUIDELINES AND ROLES Social Procurement & Indigenous Procurement; presented by City of Edmonton, with Jesse Banford and Roger Lockwood APRIL 2022 INFRASTRUCTURE

the first in-person Infrastructure Owners

OWNERS FORUM

Forum meeting in almost one-and-a-half

Sponsored by Terracon Geotechnique,

years. The topic areas – or ‘buckets’ – at

This year, the City of Edmonton presented its Indigenous procurement framework to the event, using the Owners Forum as a valuable opportunity

the ECA and Owners Forum Leadership

this year’s event covered a wide range of

Team were pleased to welcome over 50

issues, largely centred around Indigenous

stakeholders about what this framework

leaders from the owners, AEC sector, and

Procurement, Managing Risk, and the

may look like before it gets rolled out.

related industries on April 21, 2022, for

Total Cost of Ownership.

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to engage with industry partners and

“The City has already reached out to

2022-05-18 9:04:21 AM


the Enoch Cree Nation, the Métis Nation

– Steve Herbert, former Australian

issues and the availability of materials to

of Alberta, the Confederacy of Treaty

politician.

inflation and labour, the many challenges

Six Nations, and committee members at

facing the construction industry can be

Jen Hancock, vice-president

large; and so now it’s time to reach out to

collaborative construction at Chandos,

difficult to get a handle on, and so too are

our industry partners – the contractors,

framed her Owners Forum presentation

the risks.

suppliers, and consultants – as we put

on this Steve Herbert quote, reminding

this framework together and it becomes

participants that, from supply chain

“We really wanted to have a risk discussion that tried to encompass

part of our evaluation criteria,” says Jesse Banford, director of facility infrastructure delivery for the City of Edmonton. “This is one step towards reconciliation and making pathways for more Indigenous businesses and communities that

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well as economic impacts through the City’s existing purchasing needs with local Indigenous businesses. These are positive steps and as we move forward, we look to our industry partners to provide additional feedback to how we can ensure this is successful when it is implemented.” Banford regards the Owners Forum as

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an important event that brings everyone together pulling in the same direction. “I think of the phrase, ‘if you want to go fast, go alone. But if you want to go far, go together’,” says Banford. “Owners Forum is a great platform that takes our industry to the next level by bringing together a group of bright individuals who are passionate about this industry

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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 77


everything owners are seeing in today’s

share the risks, as well as have much

[Singh] and I wanted people to come

market, because it’s all top of mind right

more open and fruitful conversations

away with the knowledge that there

now for everybody,” says Hancock. “The

about how to best navigate through

really is no silver bullet that will fix

challenges we face have become so

the uncertainties. This is the strength of

everything but, if we can deliver in a more

complex and interwoven with each other

an event like the Owners Forum, which

that it’s implausible to think that we can

seeks to drive innovation and improve

just solve any of these issues with any

integration across the construction

kind of simplistic solution.”

sector.

Hancock suggests that if construction

“The risks we face will require open

collaborative and less traditional way, we’re likely to have a much better results at the end of the day. Or at the very least have a better understanding of what’s happening in our industry.”

can put forth more collaborative delivery

conversations and thoughtfulness to

TOPIC AREA (BUCKET) 3 -

models, it will be able to more easily

overcome,” says Hancock. “Jamey

INNOVATION, INDUSTRY EDUCATION, AND SUSTAINABILITY Capital and Ownership, Costs and Opportunities, Environmental Sustainability; presented by Andrew Sharman and Chris Wright Considering that the capital upfront cost of construction is typically only 15 to 20 per cent maximum of what the building will ultimately cost over its life, construction owners need to understand the reality of what a project may cost over time. Andrew Sharman, vice-president of facilities and operations at the University of Alberta, was on hand this year to discuss the total costs of infrastructure ownership, and the impact climate change and sustainability measures will have on those costs. “Climate shift is front and centre with this ever-increasing carbon tax, which is now at $50 per metric tonne of carbon

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COMING FALL 2022

an event like the Owners Forum, construction owners and stakeholders can make a difference regarding the many challenges facing the industry, as well as be better connected so that

78

Edmonton Construction Association


everyone is aligned over the desired

see happening, but we’ve still got a lot of

can actually move some of these issues

outcome.

work to do.”

forward,” says Schellenberger. “But we

“Every owner wants the best building they can get to deliver the programming they want to use it for and, obviously, general contractors, architects, and engineers all want to have something they can be proud of,” says Sharman. “The Owners Forum is about getting that alignment and continuing the discussion about how we can do things better.” WHAT’S NEXT FOR OWNERS FORUM?

ECA members can keep informed of

also want to hear from and engage with

what happens at the event through the

our membership. If they have anything

ECA website. And while the Owners

they would like discussed at Owners

Forum is not open to the public, the

Forum, they just need to reach out to

ECA is always open to hearing from its

me and I will take it to the leadership

members about what kinds of issues they

team, who will then make decisions as to

want raised at upcoming Forums.

the programming and what gets on the

“We need to keep attendance at the meeting somewhat smaller so that we

agenda for the next meeting.” From pandemic recovery and supply

Where the Owners Forum has traditionally focused on public ownership, the event has recently positioned itself to take in a broader perspective from across the breadth of the construction sector and incorporate more input from the private sector. This is a policy that will continue, as only a more complete voice from industry will be able to come up with the solutions needed to solve the most pressing issues of the day. “A lot of the work here in Alberta is still public, but there is a big market on the private side when you look at the need for new commercial, retail, residential, and industrial space; and we need to hear more from that side,” says Ciezki. “From procurement to engagement, the private industry and public sector tend to do things a little differently, and the Owners Forum gives us an opportunity to hopefully learn something from each other that we could then adopt into our respective best practices.” Sharman agrees, believing that Alberta’s construction sector will only become stronger with greater input from the private sector. “Not one element controls everything in this industry. The owners have a role in driving the direction of the projects, but we all must be aligned and have everyone understand – particularly in these challenging times – that we

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chain disruption to inflation and rising costs, there are a myriad of complex forces currently buffeting Alberta’s construction sector. But there are also opportunities for those looking to seize them. Looking ahead to later this year, the ECA is excited to explore these opportunities with construction owners and industry partners at the next Owners Forum

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meeting to help improve the sector for all its members. “We have more than a thousand member firms, and many of them are looking to build for the owners attending the Owners Forum,” says Schellenberger. “If we can work through some of the issues impacting our members through this event, it will certainly be a net benefit to all our members in terms of improving the way we deliver projects, and we are looking forward to seeing what all we can accomplish together.” u

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PEOPLE FIRST ECA scholarships support an investment in the industry’s future By Jenny Turner

In 2021, the ECA awarded nearly $145,000 to about 120 students and apprentices from the University of Alberta, Northern Alberta Institute of Technologies (NAIT), and the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Trades Board (AAITB).

Lots of ingredients go into a thriving construction industry — high-quality building materials, willing and visionary clients, and cutting-edge technologies and techniques — but to keep that industry churning, you need a sustainable, educated, and enthusiast workforce. Knowing this, the Edmonton Construction Association (ECA) invests annually in programs and students in the Edmonton region. 84

“As the hub of construction, we aim to educate people about the many opportunities and successes that can come from the construction industry,” said Taylor Lewis, events and education coordinator with the ECA. “We are always looking to support the industry and our members love to see the difference our association can make.” From in-class learning to apprenticing, the ECA invests in the industry’s future by supporting students in all stages of

Edmonton Construction Association

their learning. In recent years though, the organization has put an emphasis on engaging with post-secondary and primary schools, helping make training in the trades more financially possible for many. “The ECA always tries to give back to those who are pursuing careers in the construction industry,” said Sean Tymkow, commercial manager at Lafarge Canada Inc. and member of the ECA’s Board of Directors. “The past few years


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A joy for building can start young, and with a little help, that interest can sprout into a vibrant career in the trades. All you need are the right tools.

After a two year break due to the pandemic, the ECA, in partnership with Home Depot, kicked off their Tools for Schools program this past spring.

A team of ECA members delivered the supplies in person to the schools in April.

86

Edmonton Construction Association

have been challenging for everyone, so we wanted to try to enhance and add to the scholarship opportunities available to students. With our education partners we have tried to create some unique opportunities that are not simply gradepoint related to try and further engage students who really need the financial assistance a scholarship can provide.” Each year, the ECA provides close to $100,000 in support to students learning the many skills needed to succeed in the construction industry. Last year though, the organization upped their contributions, awarding nearly $145,000 to about 120 students and apprentices from the University of Alberta, Northern Alberta Institute of Technologies (NAIT), and the Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Trades Board (AAITB). “The ECA has and continues to be very generous in its financial support for students at NAIT in a multitude of construction-related programs, from trades to technologies,” said Brad Mielke, construction engineering instructor at NAIT. “There are a great many scholarships that are offered, some for academic performance, others to support or encourage a construction education for people who would otherwise not have the financial security to do so.” TOOLS OF THE TRADE A joy for building can start young, and with a little help, that interest can sprout into a vibrant career in the trades. All you need are the right tools. “Putting tools into a person’s hands can hopefully provide that spark of interest and be the catalyst for a career in construction,” said Tymkow. “I think most of us in the industry can remember being a kid and playing with tools. I can’t help but believe those experiences in some way led me to a career in construction.” After a two year break due to the pandemic, the ECA, in partnership with Home Depot, kicked off their Tools for Schools program this past spring. This year, the program provided more than $10,000 in tools to four schools in the Edmonton region.


“Many schools’ shop programs have fallen on hard times in the past 20 years, with more emphasis placed on computer training,” said Mielke. “Programs’ existing tools are often old and well used. Some are no longer serviceable, and teachers have to invest more of their own scarce time to repair or making do without.” The tools donated were based on program need, varying from dovetail saws and clamps, to safety glasses and hearing protection. A team of ECA members, including Mielke, delivered the supplies in person to the schools in April. For the NAIT instructor, Tools for Schools helps open the door for students interested in the trades. And that interest may lead them to his classroom. “A student might find their way to NAIT due to a positive experience in a shop class early in life. That is really the point of this program – to celebrate working with your hands, to create, to build, and to then gain some appreciation for those that choose that as a life’s pursuit.” FUTURE FOCUSED “Tools for Schools is ever-growing,” said Lewis, when asked about the importance of the program. “There will always be a need for tradespeople, and ECA knows that by investing in students interested in building, we’re helping ensure the industry benefits from a passionate and skilled labour force.” And that labour force might be needed sooner rather than later. On the heels of the pandemic, the Alberta construction industry is revving to go. According to Statistics Canada, Alberta has seen an increase of more than 15 per cent in urban housing starts in March 2022, compared to 2021. In contrast, the nation experienced a 25.8 per cent decrease in housing starts over the same period. “Everyone in the industry recognizes the current and future struggles our industry has and will have with regards to labour shortages,” said Tymkow. “The ECA has more programs that will be taking shape in the not too distant future that will further engage youth and

promote the construction industry to be recognized as a viable career option for everyone.” For Tymkow though, it goes beyond just ensuring there are boots on the ground. It’s about creating a culture of continual growth and support, where students become teachers and passion for the job grows with each generation. “At the end of the day, the students

we interact and engage with are the individuals who will make up the construction industry in the years to come,” says Tymkow. “What better way to pass the torch than by supporting these individuals throughout their journey into becoming construction professionals, which in turn encourages them to give back when they have the opportunity to pay it forward.” u

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Edmonton’s downtown makes up one per cent of the city’s entire land supply but generates almost 10 per cent of the city’s property taxes. From 2001 to 2021, Edmonton’s downtown experienced a 61 per cent increase in dwelling unit growth. Photo credit: Nathan Mol, Downtown Business Association.

UDI HELPS BRING BUSINESS BACK TO DOWNTOWN EDMONTON As the world begins to open up after two long pandemic years, more than 160 companies are working together to help Edmonton’s downtown area recover By Lisa Kopochinski

Kalen Anderson, executive director at UDI-Edmonton Metro.

88

Edmonton Construction Association

Like many downtown areas across the country, numerous businesses have been forced to close due to people losing their jobs or working remotely from their homes. To help get business happening again, the Urban Development Institute (UDI)-Edmonton Metro, a non-profit, member-driven organization, was formed in the post Second World War period and represents leaders in the land development industry in all communities throughout the Edmonton Metropolitan Region. “Together with municipalities who regulate land use and set policy related to land use, we are important city builders,” explains Kalen Anderson, executive director at UDI-Edmonton Metro. “We build the communities where people live, the roads they travel, the buildings they work in, and the playgrounds where families gather.” A trusted voice and champion of the Edmonton Metropolitan Region, UDI members build new neighbourhoods, ambitiously redevelop the urban core, develop commercial and industrial areas that enable new business opportunities, and create the parks and open spaces treasured by residents and visitors.


Anderson says its membership knows that city regions are in a competitive game for talent and capital, and Edmonton is no exception. “If investors come to our region and don’t experience a welcoming and prosperous downtown, why would they choose to place their big bets on our city and region? The image and vibrancy of our downtown is critical to attracting economic development, people, and jobs to the city and our entire region. This is why we have made this one of our Strategic Plan priorities.” STRATEGIC PLAN OBJECTIVES Edmonton’s downtown makes up one per cent of the city’s entire land supply but generates almost 10 per cent of the city’s property taxes. From 2001 to 2021, Edmonton’s downtown experienced a 61 per cent increase in dwelling unit growth. Today, there are about 261 jobs per hectare downtown. While these are positive trends, Anderson says there is still more to be done. “With the support of UDI membership across the region, we have been sending a strong signal to the local community— that as Edmonton’s development community we’re all in for downtown. The collaboration between our members and the public sector can help keep the pre-pandemic momentum going and to keep our centre city growing,” she adds. UDI’s members are comprised of development companies and professionals, including planners, surveyors, architects, engineers, contractors, finance managers, and others, whose priorities include: • a concentrated advocacy for downtown’s recovery and long-term investment; • stewardship and promotion of new business and residential development opportunities; • expanding economic development opportunities, and; • supporting additional programs and events to attract talent and build a safe and livable community in the core. “Our members work hard with

“ By naming downtown vibrancy as a key priority, UDI’s Strategic Plan focuses on the heartbeat of our big city in a new way. Over the course of the year, a series of tangible actions will be developed and pursued by UDI and its members.” – Kalen Anderson, executive director, UDI-Edmonton Area

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Edmonton Construction Association members and do business across the whole region,” says Anderson. “From windows to masonry, concrete to steel, we are working together to build the city that ECA members are critical to building Edmonton and the downtown. Development downtown is worth billions of dollars.” Matt Schellenberger, director of corporate development at the ECA, echoes the sentiment of collaboration with UDI and other association peers.

“The renewal of downtown is critical to the economic growth of the greater Edmonton region,” says Schellenberger. “Therefore, it is fantastic that we can work hand in hand with UDI in showcasing development opportunities in our city’s core.” Susan Keating is chair of UDIEdmonton Metro’s Board of Directors. She says over the course of this year, a series of tangible actions will be developed and pursued by UDI and its members.

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“Our new strategic plan is focusing on the heartbeat of our big city in a new way. With many Edmontonians returning to work, one immediate call-to-action is for our members to come downtown to show their support for downtown businesses, shops, and restaurants. Our downtown is the site of many incredible buildings, but they truly become great spaces when people are in them.” UDI-Edmonton Metro’s Strategic Plan has engaged its board through frank conversations to identify ideas with the most resonance, coupled with best practices in city building and land development. “This process required a careful look at what has happened elsewhere,” adds Anderson. “For example, in Calgary, we saw how the land development industry was able to successfully advocate for its downtown as part of an ‘all-hands-ondeck’ coalition—which led to a $200 million commitment for downtown Calgary’s recovery.” With so many Edmontonians returning to work, one immediate call to action is for UDI members to come downtown and show their support for downtown businesses, shops, and restaurants. To this end, a key focus on safety, security, and cleanliness in the downtown for all people is key and represents an upcoming area of focus over the coming months. THE NEXT FIVE YEARS As for what the five-year strategic plan looks like, priorities include collaboration/ partnerships, storytelling, government relations, member engagement, mentorship/ education, and more. “It’s all about mobilizing action towards development and economic investment and to catalyze jobs and talent in the Edmonton Metro Region,” says Anderson. “We’re going to level up our game with more proactive stories, social media posts, media relations, and more. Now is not the time to take our feet off the gas pedal. In fact, we need to accelerate our speed. Over the course of this year, we will engage with our membership to develop tangible actions to be developed and pursued by UDI to make our downtown amazing.” u


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PROFESSIONAL ESTIMATING GROUP The ECA Professional Estimating Group (PEG) supports the estimators, spec writers, quantity surveyors, and PMs who work hard to keep the project pipeline full. Through special networking, mentoring, and professionaldevelopment events, the PEG cultivates the business relationships and friendships that every professional needs to excel in their work. Spread the word to the estimators, spec writers, quantity surveyors, and PMs that you work with. Remember: the PEG is open to all employees of ECA member firms Visit edmca.com/peg/

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AN INSIDE LOOK Fort Edmonton Park’s award-winning Indigenous Peoples Experience By Kalina Broda

Fort Edmonton Park’s Indigenous Peoples Experience (IPE), an exhibit that explores the rich cultures of local First

Fort Edmonton Park’s Indigenous Peoples Experience is a 30,000-square-foot educational exhibit and immersive experience filled with local Indigenous stories, artwork, music, and text, and encourages guests to seek out truths lived by Indigenous Peoples before and after Canada’s founding.

Nations and Métis peoples—and the first of its kind in Canada—was the centre of conversation at the Professional Estimating Group’s (PEG) kick-off event on April 6, 2022. Weeks later, it was recognized for its international achievement at the TEA Thea Awards Gala and TEA Summit Conference in Anaheim, California. The 30,000-square-foot educational exhibit is an immersive experience filled with local Indigenous stories, artwork, music, and text, and encourages guests to seek out truths lived by Indigenous Peoples before and after Canada’s 94

founding. It was created in consultation with MOU Partners, Métis Nation of Alberta, and the Confederacy of Treaty Six First Nations. The cultural set opened its doors in July 2021 and was the heart of Fort Edmonton Park’s $165-million expansion project, receiving funding contributions from the Government of Canada, Province of Alberta, City of Edmonton, and Fort Edmonton Foundation. Since its opening, it’s captured attention on a local and international scale.

Edmonton Construction Association

A NIGHT OF CONNECTION AND REFLECTION In early April, the project took the spotlight at the Professional Estimating Group’s sold-out event, where 90 PEG and Edmonton Construction Association (ECA) members gathered at Fort Edmonton Park’s Eggie’s Barn for an evening of connection and reflection. A panel discussion featured leaders from the IPE project including Max Frank, vice-president of operations and enterprise development at Fort Edmonton Management Company; Dan


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In early April, the Professional Estimating Group (PEG) hosted a sold-out event, where 90 PEG and Edmonton Construction Association (ECA) members gathered at Fort Edmonton Park’s Eggie’s Barn for an evening of connection and reflection.

Members were provided with an inside look at the IPE project to celebrate its achievements and to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges of estimating faced by project stakeholders.

Eckert, preconstruction manager at Clark Builders; Michael Gilligan, senior project manager at Clark Builders; Scott Argent, vice-president at Stantec; and Daryl Samycia, president at Desco Coatings. Members were provided with an inside look at the project to celebrate its achievements and to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges of estimating faced by project stakeholders. Brad Mielke, NAIT Construction Engineering Technology instructor and PEG Leadership Team co-chair, facilitated the panel discussion and emphasized the important role estimators played in the project’s success. 96

“The IPE project was a unique opportunity that involved many groups coming together to deliver a world-class facility,” said Mielke. “Every stakeholder depended on rapid, accurate estimating from all the trades in order to decide on and modify design elements throughout the development of the project. The estimators’ ability to provide true costs in all trade scopes equipped the decisionmakers with the real-world implications of their designs and decisions.” Elements of the IPE project were designed and constructed by local Indigenous organizations in conjunction with Clark Builders’ responsibility as

Edmonton Construction Association

construction manager. It included the building of a new experiential exhibit and site development, which required the site to remain as undisturbed as possible. Signage, theming, audio-visual, lighting, and a sound system were included as part of the specialty fit-out construction. As part of the event, guests were invited to take a self-guided tour of the exhibit— and the attention to detail was hard to miss. From the 360-degree view of the kisiskâciwanisîpiy (the North Saskatchewan River) running through the concrete floor to the captivating stories shared by Elders echoing in the room, every surface and sound was thoughtfully designed by various stakeholders and inspired by the perspectives of local Indigenous contributors. Desco Coatings reimagined the concrete floor into a canvas for history, using various textures and dyes to share stories. “This project was more to us than just a floor,” Samycia said. “It was a chance to show the history of Edmonton and the Indigenous Peoples who have called this land home since time immemorial.” Gilligan shared his final reflection on the panel discussion. “I was encouraged to see how deeply connected the other panel members were to the project,” said Gilligan. “Our shared experiences really provided a sense of attachment and fondness to what is definitely an unforgettable project.” VOICES TO HONOUR In April 2022, the Indigenous Peoples Experience was recognized internationally for its outstanding themed entertainment and experience, achieving the prestigious Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement - Heritage Centre. Members of the Fort Edmonton Park and Fort Edmonton Management Company recently accepted the award at the 28th Annual Thea Awards Gala at the Disneyland Resort & Hotel in Anaheim, California. President and CEO of Fort Edmonton Management Company, Darren Dalgleish


shared in a news release, “We are truly honoured with this award recognition, but without the support of our MOU partners none of this would have been possible. We want to express our deepest gratitude to the many Indigenous voices from the Confederacy of Treaty Six First Nations and the Métis Nation of Alberta for their partnership and collaboration in bringing this amazing experience to life. This transformative experience is a result of years of partnership, cooperation, and deeper understanding between all parties.” The project is a testament to the rich and resilient history of First Nations and Métis peoples and encourages guests to reflect and reconcile. Mielke shared, “The facility is truly a work of art and a powerful instrument for reconciliation in our city, province, and country.” Stantec, the appointed portfolio project manager, represented the project owner to manage the design and construction of the Fort Edmonton Park expansion project portfolio and performed work as the local architect of record under nFusion, a Nassal Company, who was the prime consultant for the Indigenous Peoples Experience. “At the outset of this project, we focused on a collaborative approach to the creation of a space that would educate, spark conversation, and most importantly, recognize and celebrate the knowledge, culture, and experience of Indigenous Peoples,” said Heidi McGurk, major projects lead at Stantec in a recent news release. “We are humbled to have been provided an opportunity to listen to the stories of the Elders who contributed content to this important project.” ABOUT THE PROFESSIONAL ESTIMATING GROUP Formed in late 2017, the Professional Estimating Group (PEG) is one of the Edmonton Construction Association’s four networking groups that brings together estimators, spec writers, quantity surveyors, and project managers to cultivate business relationships. “Estimating is the first contact with the

client, designer, trades, and suppliers,” said Mielke. “Let’s build a community of relationships that inform, connect, and empower us to be better at what we do. As an industry, we’re facing an economic reality not seen in a generation. So how do we survive without community? The PEG is where this community started and it will thrive and evolve.” Gilligan, also a member of the PEG, shared, “it’s important to align with

other like-minded professionals in the industry—it garners collaboration and the development of new industry-specific ideas within our city.” Throughout the year, the PEG hosts special networking, mentoring and professional development events. To learn more or find out how you can join PEG, visit www.edmca.com/peg, or email matt.schellenberged@edmca.com. u

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BIRD AND CHANDOS TEAM UP FOR BUILDING GOOD INITIATIVE The three pillars of this exciting new initiative are sustainability, equity and inclusion, and transformation

By Lisa Kopochinski

In an effort to change the way the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry designs and builds for the betterment of the planet, Chandos Construction and Bird Construction Inc. entered into a threeyear strategic partnership last year with the Building Good Initiative. For decades, the construction sector has typically been viewed as more traditional, and one that may lag compared to other industries. However, over the last several years with technology, innovation, and an enhanced focus on diversity and inclusion, the industry has experienced a substantial shift. With the Building Good Initiative, there are three pillars that focus on In a joint venture, Chandos and Bird are currently constructing the new mechanical wastewater treatment facility for Lloydminster. This is the largest wastewater project executed under an Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) model in Canada and the first project of its kind to be performed using the IPD model in North America. Photo credit: Bird Construction.

sustainability, equity and inclusion, and transformation. “We want to capitalize on this momentum and see opportunity to push our industry forward even more by calling attention to these areas so we can drive performance while also improving society,” explains Nicole Monaco, director of marketing and communication for the technical builder, Chandos Construction, which has offices across Canada. ACHIEVING NET ZERO With respect to sustainability, many believe that the construction industry

Nicole Monaco is the director of marketing and communication at Chandos Construction.

98

Rachel Pattimore is vice-president, marketing and communications at Bird Construction.

Edmonton Construction Association

plays an important role in driving change to support Canada’s goal to achieve net-


career and economic opportunity for people who have typically been

Many believe that the construction industry plays an important role in driving change to support Canada’s goal to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

excluded from this industry, including women, visible minorities, immigrants and refugees, and so many other equity-deserving folks,” says Monaco. “For example, our upcoming podcast

zero emissions by 2050. It also comes as

with a disability to work on a site? How

launching in June is a miniseries that

little surprise that the building industry

can innovation reduce embodied carbon?

explores what the construction industry

(materials, construction, and operations)

And, how can the industry welcome

can do to promote a more inclusive

is responsible for nearly 40 per cent of

people to our industry to ask these tough

economy. Our guests are influential

global carbon emissions, making it even

questions and push the bounds on the

changemakers whose organizations are

more urgent for the industry to play a

traditional ways of doing things?

helping move the industry and society in

bigger part in climate emergency. In

general, forward.”

addition to creating sustainable change, it

WHAT THE AEC INDUSTRY CAN DO

is also vital that the construction industry

There are a variety of ways that the

at large is viewed to see the impact it has

industry can continue to make positive

across communities.

GDP, generating $141 billion to the

changes. For instance, the construction

economy annually. This provides a great

industry offers well-paying stable jobs. In

industry’s talent shortage by looking

opportunity to spend that money in a

fact, in Canada the construction industry

at the demographic of the workforce—

more inclusive way, such as diversifying

employs more than 1.4 million people.

focusing on equity and inclusion— and

its supply chain with businesses owned

“We believe that with a focus on

by members of equity seeking groups,

This includes addressing the

understanding how the gaps can be tightened.

equity and inclusion we can unlock

The AEC industry makes up approximately eight per cent of Canada’s

including Indigenous communities.

“We believe we must engage the younger generation and encourage them to look at all aspects of the construction industry as an opportunity to build a career—whether in the trades, as an engineer, or even an accountant,” says Rachel Pattimore, vice-president, marketing and communications at Bird Construction, which has offices from coast to coast. “Further to that, our industry—among many others—must promote diversity across our teams, which is why we have made equity and inclusion a core pillar of this initiative.” The third pillar focuses on industry transformation and how technology and innovation is driving this shift. For decades little has changed in the way

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The AEC industry makes up approximately eight per cent of Canada’s GDP, generating $141 billion to the economy annually. When it comes to building in a more

Both organizations have committed

sustainable way, the Building Good

to an equitable agreement, contributing

Initiative covers this topic in the third

resources to advance the work of

season of its podcast, Zero by Fifty, which

Building Good. Not only have they

focuses on achieving net-zero emissions.

contributed sponsorship dollars

Everything from waste diversion to

towards Building Good, but the teams

looking at the industry’s value chain, to

are working together to manage the

looking at more sustainable materials is

strategy, content development, and

discussed.

other initiatives. The companies have also found it refreshing the way in which

50/50 PARTNERSHIP To date, Bird Construction and Chandos Construction are very happy with the progress is that being made and remain deeply committed to working together

WHAT’S NEXT? As for what the rest of this year holds, both companies have spoken to dozens of leaders across the supply chain who have expressed an interest in getting involved in the community and are busy mapping out the future of Building Good with plans to announce new ways of engagement in the coming year. “We’ve got some great initiatives planned for the rest of 2022, including two additional podcast mini-series, lots of content through our blog, and new additional learning opportunities

people have responded to seeing two

for companies who want to embrace

competitors embrace this community-

change,” says Monaco.

minded work.

At the present time this three-

“People are surprised and interested,

initiative partnership is due to expire

but when you start to unpack the

in 2024, Pattimore adds this kind of

which has received executive sponsorship

weight of the change required in our

change takes time, which is why it

and support from the highest levels of

industry it becomes more obvious that

was important that Bird and Chandos

leadership at each organization.

no one company can do this alone,”

committed to working together for

says Monaco. “We need more partners

more than just 12 months.

through the Building Good Initiative,

The marketing teams for each company remain equally committed to

to step up, and we need to see this kind

advancing the Building Good community

of cooperation across the value chain.

Building Good community and three

to reach more of the industry and find

We need to prioritize the power of the

years is a long time, so we can’t

opportunities for broader collaboration

collective to drive change; change that

speculate what will happen in 2024,”

and partnership through managing

will ultimately make us all stronger,

says Pattimore. “Believe me, we’re

strategy, content development, and other

better, more efficient, and higher

going to work hard to make sure that

initiatives.

performing.

whatever happens, it’s impactful.” u

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CITIZEN ON JASPER SET TO CHANGE EDMONTON’S SKYLINE ONE Properties’ Citizen on Jasper is set to raise the bar on high amenity living and accessibility in Edmonton The upswing in Alberta’s post-

run. Citizen on Jasper will also feature

pandemic economy, combined with

a walkout rooftop and a stunning sky

Edmonton’s relative affordability, has

lounge that overlooks the picturesque

led many prognosticators to forecast

Edmonton River Valley.

that the population of Alberta’s capital

to benefit from some of the most

people over the next few decades. This

spectacular views in the city,” says

is leading to an increased demand for

Thomas Burr, vice-president, mixed-use

high-quality rental accommodation

development – Western Canada at ONE

across the city.

Properties. “The location is also very pedestrian and bicycle-friendly and

Avenue and 120 Street NW – a stone’s

is just outside of the central business

throw away from Edmonton’s downtown

district – a short walk from the downtown

core – Citizen on Jasper is a mixed-use

core and all the employment and retail

development that seeks to meet that

opportunities, and nearby amenities

demand.

that exist there. We are confident that

The new 33-storey tower, owned

Citizen on Jasper will appeal to a broad

by IG Mackenzie Real Property Fund,

demographic; from young professionals

will include 344 residential suites

to empty-nesters.”

(approximately 515 residents), as well as

The tower is sure to make a striking

8,600 square feet of retail space for a

design contribution to Edmonton’s

variety of businesses that will face Jasper

skyline with its multi-tone panels and

Avenue for easy street-level access along

a distinctive articulating aesthetic.

this busy thoroughfare.

The dynamic design incorporates an

When open for business later this year,

102

“We designed the upper floor units

will grow to more than two million

Ideally located at the corner of Jasper

Citizen on Jasper will showcase attractive rental suite designs with market-leading amenities, a hotel-style concierge desk, a highend gym and fitness centre, outdoor hot tub, yoga/wellness spaces, guest suites, media rooms, a multi-sport simulator, and much more. Photos courtesy of ONE Properties.

By Paul Adair

exterior window wall system with four-

the building will showcase attractive

inch contrasting white banding, which

rental suite designs with market-leading

seamlessly wraps around the tower

amenities, a hotel-style concierge desk,

and makes the building ‘pop’ with a 3D

a high-end gym and fitness centre,

geometric pattern that draws attention

outdoor hot tub, yoga/wellness spaces,

from every view in the city.

guest suites, media rooms, a multi-sport

“I’m really pleased with the effect

simulator, and much more. In addition,

we’ve delivered,” says Burr. “We’ve also

the tower has also been designed to

bookmarked the building, both at the

be completely dog-friendly and will

podium level (L2) and at the very top

incorporate a dog spa and exterior dog

of the tower (L34), with dynamic 16-

Edmonton Construction Association


Since inception, Citizen on Jasper prioritized ESG objectives and is pursuing LEED Gold certification to demonstrate leadership across many aspects of the project.

“ The location is also very pedestrian and bicyclefriendly and is just outside of the central business district – a short walk from the downtown core and all the employment and retail opportunities, and nearby amenities that exist there.

foot backlit aluminum ‘fin’ panels which

lighting, Braille-inspired messaging, and

network of Level 2 electric vehicle (EV)

have controllable LED lighting that can

privacy screening to draw visitors into

chargers to support the adoption of

be changed to suit holidays or relevant

the building in a very different way than

electric vehicle ownership; a feature

events in the city. So, whether you’re up

is done with other buildings in the area,

that will scale up as the electrification

close to the building or viewing from far

as well as help users and passers-by

of transportation continues to evolve.

away, you’ll instantly know that you’re

understand and appreciate the functional

Citizen on Jasper also includes smart

looking at Citizen on Jasper.”

intent of various parts of the building

building controls, in-suite utility

through the design expressions.”

submeters, and improved ventilation to

The project team has looked to preserve the history of the site and has

help provide residents and tenants with

Since inception, Citizen on Jasper

made several design references to the

prioritized ESG objectives and is pursuing

optimal comfort, control, and wellbeing in

former headquarters for the Canadian

LEED Gold certification to demonstrate

their residence.

National Institute for the Blind (CNIB).

leadership across many aspects of the

The use of Braille as inspiration has also

project. The construction manager,

tenants and prospective tenants want

been built into the overall design and is

EllisDon, implemented a strategic

more opportunities for green living,”

prominently featured in the façade.

material reuse and recycling program

says Burr. “One of the distinctive things

“Our research indicates that the

“We all believed that it is important

to divert 94 per cent of construction

that we’re doing here is installing garden

to ensure that Braille is more than just

waste from landfill. The development

planter boxes on the rooftop where

a referential thing,” says Tyler Dixon,

also incorporates a rooftop solar array to

residents will be able to work out their

partner at DIALOG, the project architect.

generate on-site, zero-carbon electricity

green thumbs and grow herbs and

“We want people who are coming into

for the building. By incorporating

vegetables for their enjoyment. We also

the building to feel as though there is

high-performance and high-efficiency

see this as being an amazing opportunity

an element of inclusion to go along with

equipment, this building is anticipated

to build a community within the building

functionality, and I think the building’s

to use 40 per cent less water than

and are looking forward to seeing how

podium is a good example of this. The

conventional projects.

this develops over time.”

standout sun-shade baffles will integrate

The project also incorporates a

As with any building project over ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 103


the last two years, working through the

efficiencies, while also improving overall

significant challenges, the experience has

pandemic has not been easy, and – from

constructability,” says Chris Lane,

also provided opportunity for the project

supply chain issues, rising costs, and

EllisDon’s vice-president/Edmonton area

team to rethink its relationship with the

labour shortages – numerous challenges

manager. “We have been successful

building, and has guided its approach to

have created a sense of volatility and

thus far by working with our trade

building design in the ‘new normal’.

uncertainty for contractors, owners, and

partners and client, being proactive in

“The last few years have changed

consultants all to overcome.

conversations and planning, and being

our understanding of what being in a

“Through value engineering, we were

flexible, trusting our key trades partners,

building 24/7 really means, and it has

able to source alternate, local products

and giving them the freedom to execute

required us to re-imagine the project

wherever possible and work with the

their scope.”

beyond just being a living space,” says

consultants and client to achieve design

While the pandemic has presented

Dixon. “A building today needs to be your workspace, where you and your family live, and where you hang out with friends. A building needs to ensure that you feel safe, comfortable, and in control. And I think that’s just what we’ve accomplished with Citizen on Jasper.” Preliminary work on the project commenced in 2015 and the site was rezoned in 2016, with work on the detailed design and permits beginning in 2018. Then, in partnership with IG Mackenzie Real Property Fund, ONE Properties began construction on the project in 2019. Currently, the schedule is on track for occupancy in August 2022, and ONE Properties will commence the lease-up campaign in August. “The first residents are expected to move into the building in September with a pre-registration campaign now underway,” says Burr. “When those first residents move in, it will really be the manifestation of the vision we had for this project at commencement, and we are excited to see how the community

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Edmonton Construction Association

starts to build and hear all the fantastic stories that Citizen on Jasper will be sure to create.” Lane agrees, adding, “The project brings new life to the west end of Edmonton’s downtown on Jasper Avenue and, being one of Edmonton’s latest towers in several decades, the features of this building will set the standard for future tower development. We at EllisDon are proud to have been involved in Edmonton’s new generation of residential towers.” u


ECA AS THE HUB OF CONSTRUCTION EXCELLENCE ENGINEERS ARCHITECTS

GENERAL CONTRACTORS

MANUFACTURERS

DEVELOPERS

PARTNER ASSOCIATIONS

OWNERS

CONSTRUCTION SERVICES

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A strategic goal of the ECA is to broaden our ring of inclusivity, bringing more diversity and engagement to the stakeholder table, and welcoming all members of the industry to take part in the future of construction in Edmonton. The ECA aspires to serve and enable our community to constantly innovate and improve. Our vision is to see the ECA as a Hub of Construction Excellence in the Edmonton Region.

edmca.com


MOVING PAST THE ‘WHAT IF’ Taking women from suppression to full expression through The Magazine Club By Shayna Wiwierski

Danielle Strang (left) and Jennifer von Berendt at the Creative Hive studios after filming episodes one and two of their upcoming docuseries. PHOTO CREDIT: ROO BAKER.

From left to right: Jesse Szymanski, owner of Modern Muse Media, along with Strang & von Berendt at the Creative Hive studios on the first day of filming. Szymanski is the executive producer of the upcoming docuseries.

106

Edmonton Construction Association

Two Edmonton women are working to shed light on the benefits and the ‘how’ of overcoming gender inequality and authority gaps in the workplace and beyond. Jennifer von Berendt and Dani Strang are co-founders of The Magazine Club™ (TMC), an EdTech (education technology) platform that offers all women (cis, trans, and non-binary) the psychologically safe space and practice to rekindle their relationship with authentic expression to bring their differentiating ideas, perspectives, and opinions back into critical conversations. Despite efforts and focus on getting more women in positions of power over the past decade, there is still a massive divide. One that is defined by many experts in the diversity and inclusion space as the authority gap. This means that, with some exceptions, the male voice, perspective, and opinion has been identified and elevated as the most authoritative and respected in the modern workplace. This bias has created an immense amount of invisible, yet visceral challenges for the credibility of perspectives outside the (cis, white) male experience. “Women do not lack the confidence, do not lack the education or life and professional experience,” says Strang. “All of these things are abundant. It’s not the women, it’s the environments that are the problem.” The idea for The Magazine Club came six years ago when von Berendt and another partner created a group where women gathered to deliberate and discuss award-winning magazine


Recent filming of the Magazine Club Practice with a diverse group of Edmonton women at the Creative Hive studios in Edmonton.

content. The intent was to build relationships, expand thinking, and invigorate polarizing discussions. What it ended up doing was facilitating deep personal and professional breakthroughs related to the harms that come from being suppressed and the power of being fully expressed. “It is paramount that we create a space where women can feel influential, heard, understood, and respected as their full authentic selves,” says von Berendt. “On one side I was this professional, this executive within a rapidly growing space, on the senior leadership team and the only mother, struggling to understand why I felt so unfulfilled,” says Strang. “It

2021 Edmonton Mayoral Candidate Cheryll Watson sits with Strang (left) and von Berendt (right) after being interviewed on film for the upcoming docuseries. PHOTO CREDIT: SARAH HUNTER.

was The Magazine Club that allowed me to think ‘okay, I am super expressed and respected in this space, but yet I feel so blocked and suppressed in [my day job]. Maybe it’s not just me. Maybe it is the environment that I’m finding myself in.’ That’s what we are looking to change with The Magazine Club.” The Magazine Club platform is currently in the ideation stage. Once launched, it will be the world’s first unlearning platform for women where, through the monthly deliberation of magazines anchored in exceptional journalism, they re-create the space where women tend to abandon their deep opinions, ideas, and perspectives.

Von Berendt and Strang are moving past their ‘what if’ by piloting The Magazine Club practice in a TV docuseries funded through Telus STORYHIVE. Since 2013, the Telus STORYHIVE program has funded productions and supported emerging filmmakers from B.C. and Alberta with mentorship and support. “Currently, women receive only two per cent of available venture capital dollars. We had to get creative about what funding was available to us and piloting our idea through a documentary sounded like a really rewarding option,” says Strang. Puneeta McBryan, executive director of the Downtown Business Association, recently participated in the filming of The Magazine Club pilot and shares,

“ It was The Magazine Club that allowed me to think ‘okay, I am super expressed and respected in this space, but yet I feel so blocked and suppressed in [my day job]. Maybe it’s not just me. Maybe it is the environment that I’m finding myself in.’ That’s what we are looking to change with The Magazine Club.”

“There’s something about this experience that because of the way it’s engineered and designed, it creates the conditions for full authentic expression and deep conversation. It’s about letting your guard down and participating in a way that I don’t know we have otherwise in our lives.” ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 107


The series, which showcases the coming together of The Magazine Club, will be launched on the Telus Optik TV Platform this fall. Edmonton’s Modern Muse Media and the Creative Hive are both women-led companies acting as key partners in the making of the series, which proudly features a 100 per cent women, trans, and non-binary production crew. “We are excited about the experts and incredibly vulnerable stories that we have been able to gather for the series,” says Strang. “In our own research that was conducted at the end of 2021, 45 out of 47 women expressed that they did not feel comfortable to fully express their ideas, perspectives, and opinions in their current environments. The call to

action is to look beyond diversity. Sure, you might be bringing more women into an organization, but that does not mean that her real expression is heard, valued, and respected. Think about what you are missing out on. What we are all missing out on.” Following the docuseries, the Magazine Club is aiming to co-produce an event later this year with the ECA for WomenBuild, which seeks to inspire, support, encourage, connect, and celebrate women in the construction industry. The event will invite women to bring their male work counterparts and explore how they can unlearn unhelpful conditioning together in a meaningful way. “WomenBuild exists to elevate women

in construction through community. There is an overarching mandate to encourage women to follow their dreams, explore new possibilities, and create things in the world that are their own,” says von Berendt, a past ECA board director. “Women have been creating ground-breaking innovations in typically male-dominated spaces. The construction industry has been one of them.” While The Magazine Club still has a way to go before launching, both von Berendt and Strang say that they hope to inspire others to move past asking “what if” and take the first step of pursuing an idea, even if it isn’t perfect. “The pressure for women to show up as perfect is paralyzing. I know so many women have incredible ideas that may never come to fruition because they have been convinced by the world and themselves that it’s not perfect enough to share or test or try,” says Strang. “If Jen and I can show up imperfectly with our previous experience as fuel behind

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to rally a community of support and be

really vulnerable about it all, the hope is to inspire other women to do the same. To lift that veil of imperfection stopping women from taking action and denying the world of their brilliance.” You can learn more about The Magazine Club at www.themagclub.org and financially support the completion and launch of their docuseries through the IFundWomen platform. u

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YBG IS THE FUTURE A healthy and connected YBG means a healthy, connected future for construction in Alberta. Formed in 2014, the YBG has become the gathering place for emerging leaders in every construction sector not only contractors and trades, but designers, engineers, owners, and other stakeholders. If you’re an ambitious, creative leader in the first half of your construction career, the YBG is for you! Visit edmca.com/ybg/ YOUNG BUILDERS GROUP

YP Merge aims to encourage collaboration among Young Professional groups from the construction-design-consultantowner communities in the Edmonton region. It grew out of the SHIFT Conference, which the Edmonton Construction Association’s YBG Group initiated in 2015, and was solidified in 2018. Oh, and if your group isn’t connected yet, reach out and let’s change that – matt.schellenberger@edmca.com. Help us grow and focus on supporting common networking, education and advocacy goals.

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STATION LANDS TRANSFORMING EDMONTON’S DOWNTOWN Building on the success of EPCOR Tower, Phase 2 of Qualico Properties’ Station Lands development project looks to reclaim more than nine acres of Edmonton’s downtown and provide much-needed new housing in an area yearning for revitalization By Paul Adair

110

Edmonton Construction Association

Station Lands integrates both residential and commercial spaces. It will act as a connecting hub for Edmonton’s most prominent districts and public institutions. RENDERING BY NORM LI.

The City of Edmonton will soon see its cityscape take on a new shape, thanks to a $1.3 billion investment within a 9.5acre downtown plot of land that has remained largely undeveloped for more than 30 years. The location of this significant, mixeduse redevelopment project is historically unique within Edmonton’s downtown. Stretching from 97 Street and 101 Street south of 105 Avenue, at the turn of the 20th century the former Old Canadian National railyard anchored Edmonton’s historic warehouse district and was the gateway into the city, its centre for economic activity, and – for many travelling out west – the first impression of what Edmonton had to offer.


A century later, Qualico Properties looks to reclaim this ‘lost space’ through the development of Edmonton’s only master-planned community, Station Lands. With Station Lands, Qualico aims to support Edmonton’s city-wide growth policies and provide muchneeded new housing in an area yearning for revitalization by integrating both residential and commercial spaces, and acting as a connecting hub for Edmonton’s most prominent districts and public institutions. “The Station Lands project helps to bring the different areas of the downtown together,” says Kalen Anderson, executive director at Urban Development Institute – Edmonton Metro. “The former rail lands that used to divide the city centre will now stitch together Edmonton’s north and south with the east and the west of Edmonton, as well as create a meaningful connection to the city’s Chinatown area, which has historically been a little bit isolated due to

Qualico Properties first purchased the Old CN rail yard in the late 1990s and completed the LEED Gold certified EPCOR Tower (seen here) in 2011. PHOTO COURTESY OF QUALICO PROPERTIES.

existing infrastructure in place.” Qualico Properties first purchased the Old CN railyard in the late 1990s and completed the LEED Gold certified EPCOR Tower in 2011; a masterclass on innovative building and sustainability systems. Rising 28 storeys above the city, EPCOR Tower is one of Edmonton’s most distinctive buildings, and is the tallest building Qualico has ever been involved with in Western Canada. EPCOR Tower stands as is an adaptable, timeless building that sets a new standard for downtown development and offers tenants fantastic amenities, such as a child care centre, a fitness centre, on-site dining, personal services, as well as a conference centre. “EPCOR Tower really kickstarted our higher density master plan for Station

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Station Lands will bring more than 2.5 million square feet of vertical development to the downtown area. RENDERINGS BY NORM LI.

“ The former rail lands that used to divide the city centre will now stitch together Edmonton’s north and south with the east and the west of Edmonton.” – Kalen Anderson, Urban Development Institute – Edmonton Metro.

Lands, which has evolved considerably

of five residential towers in addition to

since 2011,” says Mike Saunders, senior

the already completed high-rise office

vice-president, Qualico Properties. “Our

building, EPCOR Tower.

plan for Station Lands has adapted to

The Station Lands development

the demands of the residential market

will also feature small independent

and the expected growth of Edmonton’s

businesses alongside the high-rise

population over the coming decades

residential space with additional family-

to two million people. Simply put, the

friendly amenities, playgrounds, and

current boundaries of the city won’t

walkable public space that includes

be able to support that level of growth

public patios and gardens, water features,

without increased densification, and

space for food trucks and vendors, and

we feel that Station Lands will help to

an outdoor performing arts stage. Many

address this land supply issue.”

of these amenities will be further used

With EPCOR Tower representing Phase

to bring the arts to the community

1 of the Station Lands development

through interactive art exhibits and live

project, Qualico recently commenced

performances, and will be guided by

Phase 2 with work starting on the first of

input from local arts organizations.

two residential towers that will eventually

“We have some exciting developments

bring 605 units to the downtown.

coming out of our master plan in regard

Ultimately, Qualico has planned for a total

to the public realm space that we are

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Edmonton Construction Association

calling the Round House, and we will soon be releasing some of our public amenity and conceptual design plans that really pay respect to the heritage of the site, as well as showcase what it is we’re trying to achieve with Station Lands,” says Saunders. The Station Lands development project also includes an important infrastructure investment in building a utility corridor connecting the Station Lands district to the civic precinct. This corridor will accommodate a belowgrade linkage for both energy lines and a pedway access, which will directly support the expansion of district energy as Station Lands brings more than 2.5 million square feet of vertical development to the downtown area. Qualico strongly believes that this combined utility/pedway option will be fundamental to the success of advancing further development for Station Lands. “Being able to tie into this district energy system through the underground, all-season pedestrian pedway will help to reduce our overall environmental


footprint for the building and any future buildings that are part of this redevelopment,” says Saunders. “This proposed pedway/energy corridor will be a major opportunity for the city that will set Station Lands apart from pretty much any other development going on in Edmonton.” Building on the success of Phase 1’s EPCOR Tower, Qualico’s ongoing ambition for the Station Lands development will advance the Capital City Downtown Plan’s goals to create a sustainable, vibrant, accessible, and well-designed community, enforce its commitment to the City of Edmonton’s Community Energy Transition Strategy, and provide an all-weather access to the City’s investment in Light Rail Transit (LRT). “Having a direct connection to the LRT has a value-add to Station Lands and adjacent communities, as the public will have convenient access to workplaces, commercial, and recreational amenities, as well as residences as the plan for Station Lands continues to unfold,” says Saunders. The ongoing development has faced a number of challenges in recent years; from the downturn within the oil sector dragging down the local economy, to heavy escalation and inflationary pressure on construction costs, and the challenge of operating during a global pandemic. And while some challenges persist, the ability of Station Lands to navigate these hurdles gives hope for a light at the end of the tunnel, particularly as Edmonton emerges out from under COVID-19 and the market demand for housing increases. It is expected that Station Lands will create up to 1,000 jobs for the city and the community could see up to 5,000 Edmontonians either calling Station Lands home or their place of work. “We have certainly seen a lot of stresses on a lot of different sectors over the last few years, so it is really great to see the kind of bullishness in the market that Station Lands represents,” says

Anderson. “From a high-level economic perspective, city building and policy perspective, and a local redevelopment perspective, this project checks all the boxes.” The downtown of any city is important, but perhaps even more so the Prairies, which views the downtown core as being the heartbeat of their communities.

“Our plan for Station Lands has adapted to the demands of the residential market and the expected growth of Edmonton’s population over the coming decades to two million people.” – Mike Saunders, Qualico Properties.

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Edmonton Construction Association

secondary campuses, and a wide array of artistic institutions, and is more and more becoming the place where Edmontonians come to work, live, and play. Edmonton’s Urban Development Institute has long-recognized the relationship between a strong downtown and a strong city or region; so much so that, in its new strategic plan, it only has six main priorities and has devoted one of them to ensuring that Edmonton’s downtown be amazing. When complete, the benefits of Station Lands will be felt across the city, growing the city’s tax base and generally improving confidence in the community for residents, visitors, and investors alike. “Cities across Canada are in a really competitive game for investment and talent, and people judge cities on how they look or how they feel, and expect a lot of modern amenities,” says Anderson. “Even when people don’t necessarily live or work downtown, that doesn’t mean that they won’t benefit from a strong city centre. In Edmonton, our downtown takes up less than one per cent of all the land in the city, but contributes almost 10 per cent of the tax base, and that makes an enormous continuation to our whole community. This is really important because a strong tax base downtown means that we can afford to build all kinds of great neighbourhoods across the whole city.” Looking ahead, critical underground work continues to expand on what was completed in Phase 1 with EPCOR Tower, and this foundation will enable Phase 2 to rise out of the ground early this coming summer. “We’re excited to keep building in 2022 and to share our vision of a vibrant downtown community with all Edmontonians,” says Saunders. u


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A BIG YEAR AHEAD YBG is getting up close and personal for 2022 By Shayna Wiwierski

The 2022 YBG Kick Off took place on March 23 from 4 to 6 p.m. at Campio Brewing Co., which was the group’s first in-person event after the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted earlier this year.

With a heavy focus on rebuilding relationships, all partners will be encouraging people to come to the YBG events and meet in person in 2022.

YBG is a great place to meet those who you have interacted with before, through either Zoom, email, or phone, and connect with them on a one-on-one basis.

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Edmonton Construction Association

After a long two years, YBG members are excited to interact with each other face-toface once again. The 2022 YBG Kick Off took place on March 23 from 4 to 6 p.m. at Campio Brewing Co., which was the group’s first in-person event after the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted earlier this year. The sold-out event had over 200 people and started the year off on a positive note. “With COVID winding down, a lot of us haven’t seen each other in a while and it was an opportunity to get everyone out and talking again,” says Patrick Williams, chair of the events and engagement team at YBG. “We had just over 220 people and it was a blast seeing a lot of old faces and new faces that were new to YBG. It was great to have a good turnout.” The success of the YBG Kick Off was a preview of the year ahead for the young builders’ group. According to Megan Brooks, chair of the industry collaboration group at YBG, they are focused on a number of events and initiatives this year. In addition to the SHIFT conference in October, with a theme called Forward with Focus, they are also partnering with the YP Merge partners to align their events and initiatives going forward. With a heavy focus on rebuilding relationships, all partners will be encouraging people to come to the events and meet in person in 2022. In addition to in-person events, they are also doing a mentorship program for likeminded people in the industry. “I would say one of the most profound pieces of feedback I have had is the connection that the YBG members have towards one another within our industry,” says Brooks, who is also an associate and the leader of design technology at Dialog. “We


YBG is also a great place to meet those who you have interacted with before, through either Zoom, email, or phone, and connect with them on a one-on-one basis.

are trying to embrace that people want to get together, to get them networking again and re-start that collaboration. This will also help us determine what we can do to help move the industry forward.” Since YBG is a great networking opportunity for those working in the industry, even if you are new to the group, Williams says that the leadership team is here to help connect you with like-minded individuals, which helps to expand your network. He adds that it is a great opportunity to connect with people in similar positions as you, as well as get to know your peers in the construction world, such as general contractors, subtrades, insurance, design, etc. YBG is also a great place to meet those who you have interacted with before, through either Zoom, email, or phone, and connect with them on a one-on-one basis. “It’s a networking event, for sure. You get to go out and be more casual and go to these cool venues. There is always a

cocktail involved and some snacks and people are in great moods. It’s nice to be able to put a face to the name behind the email you get on a daily basis,” says Leah Marchon, director at the ECA and board liaison with the YBG leadership team. “Say that someone is requesting a course in construction or surety bonds and you are like ‘hey, I know you!’. It’s actually developing those friendships and those relationships you have behind the computer in real-time face to face.” One event that the leadership team hopes to host this summer is Site Series, which is an event that the YBG has held a few times in the past. The Site Series is unique in that participants can get a behind-the-scenes look at some of Edmonton’s more prolific construction projects. Past Site Series events have taken place at the ICE District, including Rogers Place, Stantec Tower, and Fort Edmonton Park. The event includes a tour with the project teams and consultants, which is something that unless you were

working on those specific projects, you wouldn’t necessarily have the access to view them while in the construction phase. “We did some pretty cool Site Series tours when I first came into YBG. I still remember walking into Rogers Place and walking right into the middle of the arena and looking up when they were still installing the steel and thinking, ‘wow, without YBG, if you aren’t working on that project, you would never get the opportunity to go in and see it’,” says Williams. Other events that YBG members have to look forward to are numerous golf tournaments, which Marchon adds is a great way for the leadership team to connect with members and hear what they want to see in the year ahead. She says that the team is always looking for feedback about how YBG can bring value to members. “We have a really great team of exciting people that have been committed to the YBG for the last few years and I think with managing the restrictions, they were questioning where they were able to add value,” says Marchon. “With us being back in person, they were excited to give back and build events for our members. I think the members should expect some great things coming up in 2022 and beyond.” u

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ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 117


WHERE THE WORK IS. BuildWorks Projects Over 7,500 construction opportunities reported on across AB, SK, and MB annually. BuildWorks Canada is your Locally connected source for construction opportunities. BuildWorks Directory The most comprehensive listing of qualified contractors and service providers in the industry. Find better partners, and list your company to be seen, get invited, and win more work! BuildWorks On Demand A growing number of companies are using BuildWorks On Demand for private, secure, invitations to bid. This zero-cost service streamlines communication and document distribution, saving you time and money. For more information, contact your Local Construction Association or visit www.buildworkscanada.com


UPDATE FROM BUILDWORKS CANADA By Wm (Bill) Black B.Sc., CEC, LEED AP, President & COO, Calgary Construction Association

After an unscheduled switch made in

some time. Particularly around what the

monitor and track in order to understand.

record time back in 2020, and thanks to

future needs to be.

We also have to then manage around

an unprecedented “all-hands-on-deck”

This renewed focus is all about

their changes as they often present new

effort, BuildWorks was able to continue

maximizing the scope of this service for

challenges and opportunities in our

to provide our members with access to

industry in its current and future form,

mission to remain integrated with these

opportunities by way of supporting them

and we also have the benefit of some

platforms.

in the pursuit of business.

fresh eyes that will potentially bring

Despite the many interruptions and distractions of COVID, BuildWorks has continued to move forward. We now

Our very heritage as construction

new perspectives and input for future

associations is steeped in the Builders

enhancements.

Exchange and the Plans Room service.

All this is happening while, at the same

As a former user of the Plans Room

have a stronger working relationship

time, municipal, provincial, and federal

in Calgary – when it was still actually

across Alberta with all eight partners

procurement groups are engaging in

a “room” – its importance is well

and, while there are still some features

and exploring their own initiatives and

understood and consequently its future is

being finalized, there is probably more

upgrades to their platforms. This ever-

a priority for us all. u

alignment and attention on this valuable

shifting backdrop presents yet another

service now than there has been for

context that we have to constantly

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In partnership with FMI Consulting, the ECA held the Emerging Leaders Institute (ELI) from April 27-29, 2022.

LEARNING TO BECOME A LEADER The ECA teams up with FMI Consulting this past April for the Emerging Leaders Institute By Shayna Wiwierski

The ECA recently held a course for those

successful and interactive programs for

experience held in October in Kananaskis,

looking to level up their leadership skills.

the last 25 years. The ELI course is de-

Alta. The CLI is for more senior leaders,

signed to provide practical business man-

and the ECA identified that they needed

ECA held the Emerging Leaders Institute

agement skills to build effective leaders

to offer something that was more intro-

(ELI) from April 27-29, 2022. This course

for the future.

ductory and got people into the world of

In partnership with FMI Consulting, the

is a spinoff from the popular Emerging

The program launched two years ago

recognizing their own personality traits

Managers Institute, which is also offered

after the success of the Canadian Leader-

and how to deal with those who differ

by FMI and has been one of their most

ship Institute (CLI), which is a three-day

from theirs.

120

Edmonton Construction Association


The ELI was designed as an in-person

at Delnor Construction Ltd. and was

“It showed you how you react in times

course, however, due to the pandemic it

recommended to take the course since

of stress. For me, I’m a highly extroverted

has only been offered once prior to this

his senior manager sits on the board of

person, but in times of stress, I tend to

year in an online format.

the ECA and is part of the group leading

be a little more introverted and typically

education and courses.

less dominant, which is interesting to

“The online was a lot different than the in-person. It was still beneficial, but

Hall is still early in his career and says

see,” says Hall. “There was a whole ses-

there wasn’t as much team building and

that he was looking to enhance some

sion on tips and tricks on how to get the

team communication and dialogue,” says

of the skills that he knew the ELI course

most out of different people on different

Taylor Lewis, events and education coor-

would provide. Going into it, he was look-

personality spectrums when they are

dinator for the ECA. “People prefer taking

ing forward to learning about time man-

highly analytical, highly dominant, highly

leadership courses in a group dynamic

agement and delegation, however the

extroverted, as well as the other ends of

over doing them online. There is more

one session that was a highlight for him

the spectrum. So, it was interesting to see

room for relationship building and brings

was the personality assessment.

some of those characteristics in some of

more vibrancy into the learning.” The ELI program prepares attendees for the next level of leadership and is aimed for those who are new leaders or

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cial for her and her career. Not only will it help boost her resume but it will also help her with her confidence in presenting and talking to different people and clients. Dallen Hall was another participant in the course. Hall is the project manager ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 121


The ELI was designed as an in-person course, however, due to the pandemic it has only been offered once prior to this year in an online format.

Since the course is hands-on and features a lot of group activities, it was a great way to meet others in the industry.

my team members and colleagues and

opportunity to meet other people who

They both note that it’s a great place to

how they want to be communicated to

are in the same stages of their careers.

broaden your network of contacts within

get the best out of them.”

The maximum number of participants

the industry. Since the course is hands

the course can accommodate is 30, and

on and features a lot of group activities,

25 individuals ended up taking part.

it was a great way to meet others in the

Both Hall and Dunn mentioned that this course also was a great networking

industry. “Even in the last couple of weeks, I have reached out to a couple people that were in the class to follow up not only on the work we might do together in construction but also how we might react to specific scenarios or obstacles we might face on a day-to-day basis,” says Hall. Lewis says that overall the feedback from the ELI course was phenomenal. She says that people really enjoyed the networking aspect, and because of the good feedback, the ECA is thinking of launching another session again in the fall or winter. She adds that 90 per cent of the people surveyed said that if they held another session they would send someone else from their firm since it’s a great way to learn how to become a leader. “It fortifies the things they would need to do in an introductory leadership role and guide them to hopefully be a senior leader,” says Lewis. u 122

Edmonton Construction Association


REMEMBERING

ALOIJSIUS “AL” JOSEPH HENDRIKS On January 29, 2022, Aloijsius Joseph Hendriks passed away in his home in Edmonton, Alta. at the age of 87. Aloijsius was born in Bergen, Holland and was the fourth of seven children of Peter and Wilhelmina Hendriks. Al – as he was known by his family and friends – is survived by his one and only love, Agnes; four cherished children, Perry (Jo-Anne), John (Sharon), Angie, and Allen (Lori); as well as their nine grandchildren, Michelle (Tommy), Danielle (Mark), Nicole (Chris), Pierce, Anthony (Rena), Carissa (Alex), Mariah (Owen), Ashley (Coulton),and Blake; and five greatgrandchildren, Zoey, Nico, Rhiley, Brody, and Turner. Al is predeceased by his siblings, Gertruda, Laura, John, Pierre, and Willy. He is survived by his sister, Elly. Growing up in Bergen and then Nijmegen, Holland, Al was 11 years old when Holland was liberated after the Second World War. At the age of 18, he was already a foreman on the construction of electrical train stations near his home. Al met Agnes at an exhibition in ‘T Zand, Agnes’ hometown, where their love blossomed. Six months later they were married on April 21, 1958, and with just over $40, boarded a ship named the Groote Bear and immigrated to Canada for a better life. They landed in Halifax on April 29, 1958 and took a train to Edmonton where they ultimately settled and made a home on May 5, 1958. Al and Agnes were tireless in finding work, learning the language, and adapting to their new life together in Canada. Together, Al and Agnes worked hard to get ahead and become established in Edmonton. Al’s first job was with a

company that made doors and windows. In 1975, Al took the leap and created his own company, AJH Construction Management Ltd., which he continued to be a part of to his last day. In 1980, his sons Perry and John joined the company, soon to be followed by his other children, Angie and Allen. Al’s career in construction included the construction of Kingsway Garden Mall, Londonderry Mall, Derek Golf & Country Club and St. Joseph’s Basilica, William Lutsky YMCA, St. Thomas More Catholic Church, as well as numerous other religious buildings in the Edmonton area. Al was very proud to have left his signature on the landscape of Edmonton. To Al and Agnes, family is everything. Together they raised four children and were blessed and overjoyed with grandchildren and great-grandchildren who affectionally called him “Gramps”. Family gatherings were the highlight of his life and he loved to be part of their lives and watch them grow and succeed in life. His door was always open to anyone who wanted to talk, to discuss, and to give encouragement to them. Al had a strong moral compass that kept him in good stead in family and business life. He was a man of deep faith and his handshake was strong, honest, and true. Al had a fortitude within him that was unshakeable and he was a man of his word. Determination was a part of his being and he did not give up, ever. There will never be another Aloijsius Joseph Hendriks and the void his death has left is indescribable. His legacy and spirit will live on in his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.u

ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 123


60 YEARS OF INDUSTRY LEADERSHIP CP Distributors has been building up Canada for the past six decades 60 years ago, a company was started based on the love of the construction industry and the need to supply highend, top-quality service. CP Distributors (CPD) was incorporated in 1962 in Saskatoon, Sask. as a small construction specialty distributor, supplying specialty building products to the construction industry. Over the years we expanded our expertise to include customers in the commercial, institutional (schools, hospitals, and correctional facilities), hospitality, multi-family and industrial sectors. CPD has expanded geographically, and in addition to our Saskatoon location, which includes our corporate headquarters, we now have locations in Regina, Edmonton, Calgary, Surrey, and Halifax. Each of our locations has their own warehouse, fabrication CPD Calgary supplied and installed metal doors and frames, wood doors and frames, hardware, and specialties for the 21-storey Ella tower.

shop, fleet of service vehicles, customer

CPD Calgary supplied PS frames, including lead lined and STC, and more on the Calgary Cancer Centre.

service, and project coordination teams. CP Distributors is well known in Canada through our selection of highquality product lines, which include manufactured products, architectural hardware, security hardware, electronic hardware, detention hardware, fire doors, wood doors, toilet partitions, washroom accessories, electric operators, security access systems, mailboxes, spectator seating, and much more! The world is continuously changing and codes are constantly updating. We are in an industry that must pivot, and this is not always an easy task or a realistic expectation. At CPD we are always educating ourselves and our clients and working to provide the most up-todate information and product. Recently we have added a team of architectural consultants, as well as integrated security specialists, to become a one-stop construction and building supply shop. We work directly with architects and builders to ensure everything we touch is up to code and functions to the best capabilities of all components involved. We also offer a preassembly service to help our clients cut down on costs and save time. CPD | INTEGRATED SYSTEMS (DIVISION 28) Due to ongoing and increasing client demand, we now provide design and build services. We supply, install, and service building entry systems, CCTV cameras, video recording, access control, intrusion protection, and all varieties of integrated security systems.

124

Edmonton Construction Association


Our consultants have experience with the unique needs of various types of facilities, including education, health care, multifamily, commercial, and detention projects.

ARCHITECTURAL OPENINGS CONSULTING We recognize the need for expert advice when it comes to the functionality of a building. To serve our clients better, we have added a team of architectural opening consultants to our roster. Our consultants have experience with the unique needs of various types of facilities, including education, health care, multifamily, commercial, and detention projects. They help to simplify specifications and provide the right products to meet the needs of all your opening and building requirements. Our consultants: • Develop hardware schedules • Use BIM Integration • Graphically track changes • Recommend and supply product to meet code, design, and function • Design access control and security systems PREASSEMBLY AND PREFINISHING CP Distributors offers a preassembly and prefinished option. We install the hardware onto doors in a controlled environment by certified installers. This means doors can be delivered to a job site ready to go. We can help our clients save money, improve their schedule, and eliminate jobsite errors. These new practices contribute little to no packaging waste to jobsites and contribute to a lean construction process. Some of CP Distributors’ recent accomplishments include: The Ella Tower – CPD Calgary supplied and installed metal doors and frames, wood doors and frames, hardware, and specialties for the 21-storey tower.

The Calgary Cancer Centre – CPD Calgary supplied PS frames, including lead lined and STC. They supplied and installed hollow metal doors, plastic laminate wood doors, finish hardware, automatic door operators, and manual and automatic aluminum sliding doors. There are over 5,000 openings on this project. Nutrien Tower – CPD Saskatoon supplied doors, frames, hardware, washroom accessories, toilet partitions,

high-speed roll-up doors, bike racks, lockers, floor mats, mailboxes, and automatic door operators. We preassembled the hardware on the doors to cut down on jobsite waste, cost, and time. We strive to optimize our customers’ success by providing them with the best value in quality products and service. We are your building connection and proud to have been for the past 60 years. Call us at 1-888-875-9090 to learn more. u

­ 4715 Eleniak Rd NW, Edmonton sales.edmonton@cpdist.ca

ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 125


A SPARK THAT KEEPS GLOWING A. Circuit Electric Ltd. celebrates 40 years

Amazon facility in Nisku.

Since 1982, A. Circuit Electric Ltd. has

on smaller projects and working for a

and relocated to our new facility. This

continued their legacy of providing

handful of home builders,” recalls Victor

allowed us to continue growing. The

exceptional electrical services in the

and Wanda’s son Greg Ciezki, certified

expansion helped us to secure our first

Edmonton region.

master electrician (CME) and project

major contract with Dollarama stores

“Our high-quality standards and our

manager of business development at A.

throughout Alberta. Over the next 10

track record of completing construction

Circuit Electric. “We employed a lot of

years, we successfully completed over 70

projects and service calls on-time and

family members back in the early days.

new locations.”

on-budget have earned us an enviable

So, it literally was a family-run company

reputation,” says Victor Ciezki, master

for many years.”

electrician and co-founder at A. Circuit

Greg worked at A. Circuit Electric

With continued business growth, more help in the office was needed. In July of 2008, A. Circuit Electric promoted

Electric. “We take pride in our work and

for many summers throughout his

Steven Marques from the field to their

these qualities have kept us in business

youth, officially joining the company in

vital office staff in the role of estimating

for over 40 years.”

1994. Through his apprenticeship, he

and project management. This kicked off

In their early days, Victor and his

completed his journeyman electrician

their expansion in the larger commercial

wife Wanda, also co-founder of the

certification in 1998. In 2006, he

market.

business, ran the company out of their

successfully followed in his father’s

home. At that time, the company was

footsteps, becoming a master electrician.

Marques’ presence brought a positive attitude, good work ethic, and a great

mainly focused on residential work with

“In 2003, we slowly transitioned

some smaller commercial projects. Their

out of residential and moved toward

him. And, it came with a true appreciation

growth was steady.

the commercial sector,” says Greg.

for the business as Marques had started

“Like many companies that start in a

with the company fresh out of high

garage, we outgrew our space, secured

school, completing his apprenticeship

“The company maintained five to 10 electricians in the early years, focusing 126

Edmonton Construction Association

motivation to learn from those around


Freson Bros. Fresh Market in Rabbit Hill.

Plaza 167 distribution.

to achieve his Journeyman certification.

referrals thanks to our quality of work,

With that, in 2015, Marques joined Victor

on-site safety, customer service, and

and Greg as a master electrician.

completion on schedule. Each project, no

Marques discusses one of A. Circuit’s successes in managing a project for Amazon, saying, “the Amazon non-sort facility in Nisku is a million-square-foot warehouse and our largest contract to date. Our work was on a very tight schedule with months lost to bad weather,” he says. “We had to hire many electricians while working double and triple shifts to get this project completed successfully. While having many challenges with COVID-19, I am especially proud of the way our team stayed dedicated and safely came together to

• Innovation and adaptation of technology

matter the size, is important to us.”

• Great track record of successful projects, including high-profile projects

Over the course of 40 years, A. Circuit

for Amazon’s Nisku facility

Electric’s name has been synonymous

“Our success is also due, very much in

with the reasons for its success, which

part, to the hard work and dedication of

include:

our employees and continued support

• Outstanding work quality

of our contractors, suppliers, and

• Cost-effective solutions

customers,” says Wanda. “We are forward

• Efficient problem solving

thinking and innovative. We keep our

• Client and industry trust building and

company commitments and we are a

valuing relationships • Completing projects on time and on budget • Exceptional customer service

trusted partner in the industry, offering exceptional value through every project.” Over the years, A. Circuit Electric has also proudly created valuable traditions

make this such a successful project.” A. Circuit Electric strives to be a place that not only provides outstanding service to each client, but also functions as a workplace that empowers employees. What started as a twoperson team now employs over 50 people and continues to grow. “We want A. Circuit Electric to be a place where people want to work,” says Wanda. “We’re also a company that comes front-of-mind for our industry and clients.”

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Victor seconds Wanda’s wishes. “We are a proud family-owned-and-operated company and we treat our employees as such,” he says. “We pride ourselves on our repeat business through our 40

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years. That repeat business is based on ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2022 127


desire to exceed customer expectations.

and memories for their team.

Adds Steve, “we remain united in our

Wanda and Vic also value the many

objective to provide the highest-quality

says Greg. “We had a breakfast tradition

friendships within the construction

electrical installation for our clients while

to start the day. These mornings were

industry their team have cemented

meeting their allotted budgets and

filled with good laughs as we finished

over the years. In fact, community

constrained schedules.”

up odds and ends from the week to get

appreciation and giving back are top of

a good start on the upcoming week.

mind for them.

“I remember loving to work Saturdays,”

“When not on the jobsite you’ll find

Part of what makes A. Circuit Electric a

The first 40 years have promised great growth for the next 40 years for A. Circuit Electric.

great place to work is our commitment

our team volunteering and donating

“We are hoping for continued success

to putting on so many social events,

to causes like the Stollery Children’s

and leaving this business in the capable

including our annual golf tournament,

Hospital Foundation, the Canadian

hands of our continued legacy as we pass

poker tournaments, barbeques,

Cancer Society, community hockey, and

on the torch to the next generation,” says

shinny hockey, bowling, and our yearly

junior soccer teams,” says Wanda.

Vic and Wanda.

In addition, A. Circuit Electric thanks

Christmas party. These events are a great

their industry peers, suppliers, and clients.

way to see all of our staff away from

“We couldn’t have achieved what

the job sites and for everyone to have a

Adds Greg, “we aim to build on and maintain existing trusted partnerships while developing new ones in both new

we have to this point without their

and existing markets as we continue

According to Marques, the Amazon

professionalism and support,” says Vic.

our tried-and-true people-first business

project award tops his list of memorable

“We are also incredibly grateful for our

model.”

moments. There was a sense of pride and

reliable employees, their great work ethic,

accomplishment in not just successfully

positive attitude, and their willingness

16321 130 Avenue in Edmonton , or give

completing the project on-schedule, but

to learn. Each person brings different

them a call at (780) 451-4441. Visit them

also the entire team’s dedication and

strengths to our company.”

online at www.acircuit.ca. u

chance to relax and unwind.”

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Edmonton Construction Association

For more information, visit them at


INDEX TO ADVERTISERS A&H Steel Ltd.

31

Donalco Western Inc.

61

Northbridge Financial Corporation

A. Clark Roofing & Siding

47

Dynamic Demolition & Recycling Inc.

68

Northern Exposure Decking Inc.

Action Electrical Ltd.

63

Edmonton Kubota

54

Northgate Industries Ltd.

Alberta One-Call Corporation

19

Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta 22

NovoCrete Stabilization Solutions

121

Alberta Painting Contractors Association

81

EllisDon Construction Services Inc.

15

Ogilvie LLP

68

Alberta Screw Piles Ltd.

39

Encore Trucking & Transport Ltd.

7

Paandon Construction Ltd.

97

Alberta Wilbert Sales

67

Equipment Sales & Service Limited

77

Pals Geomatics Corp.

36

All Type Electric

59

ESC Automation

93

PCL Construction Management Inc.

Allmar Inc.

37

Ewel

128

Pemco Construction Ltd.

119

An-Mar Concrete Pumping Co. Ltd.

22

Field Law LLP

91

Petrocom Construction Ltd.

44

Aplin Martin Consultants Ltd.

64

Fluor Canada Ltd.

29

PM Signs Corporation

Arcom Technical Services Ltd.

IFC

Formations Inc.

95

Protint Inc. Provincial Refrigeration Ltd.

76

Pumps & Pressure Inc.

35

Arthur J. Gallagher Canada Limited

83

Foster Park Brokers

89

Associated Engineering Alberta Ltd.

34

Frontier Construction Products Ltd.

59

Barricades and Signs

83

Garden Concrete Services Ltd.

Bartle & Gibson

42, 53, 90

Beam Craft Inc.

45

Behrends Group

26 & 27

OBC

GEC Architecture

30

Glaze Wall Services Ltd.

80

Goldbar Contractors Inc.

65

Berg Chilling Systems Inc.

87

Grant Metal Products Ltd.

93

BFL Canada Insurance Services Inc.

53

Gravisys Inc.

59

Bird Construction

73

HALL Shoring & Foundations

51

Blacktop Paving Inc.

85

HUB International

79

Bolson Engineering Solutions

73

Icon Industrial Contractors

97

Brock White

16

IG Investment Management Ltd .

78

Brownlee LLP

13

Innovative Fall Protection

18

BURNCO Rock Products

91

Integrity Waste Solutions

21

Can Traffic Services

49

JAPA Machinery Group Ltd.

17

Canadian Dewatering

55

JK Environmental

23

Canadian Fence Contracting

95

Kehoe Equipment Ltd.

71

Canadian Wood Council

57

Knights Roofing Ltd.

73

Canem Systems

72

Kor Contracting

75

CAP Engineering

75

Koralta Construction

99

Capitall Exterior Solutions

61

Leduc Overhead Door Inc.

37

Careers Carmacks Enterprises Ltd.

Qualimet Inc.

49 108 18

3

9 108

65

Rapid Concrete Ltd.

100

RDE Group

104

Refined Interiors Inc.

113

Regional Roof Inspections & Consulting Ltd. 119 Robert B. Somerville Co. Limited

34

Rocky Mountain Equipment

33

Rotaflow Controls Inc.

41

Sam’s Craft Iron Ltd. Shelby Engineering

71 108

Siemens Canada Limited

33

Soletanche Bachy Canada

46

St. Albert Parking Lot Maintenance Ltd.

81

Standard General Inc.

20

Strathcona Mechanical Limited

117

Sunco Communication And Installation Ltd. 25 Super Save Group

114

Superior Trenching Ltd.

41 41

11

Lenbeth Group of Companies

75

T&T Sand & Gravel Ltd.

63

LMS Reinforcing Steel Group

101

Target Products Ltd.

122 33

Challenger Geomatics

25

Loadrite

80

Tetra Tech Inc.

Christensen & McLean Roofing Co.

128

Madsen’s Custom Cabinets (1983) Ltd.

101

Towneplace Suites

111

Clark Builders

49

Maple Reinders Constructors

Tri-Stad Construction Inc.

121

Trisura

67

5

Collins Industries

87

Master Paving Alberta Ltd.

37

Con-Spec Industries Ltd.

61

McLennan Ross LLP

95

Vantage Builders Ltd.

104

Cooper Equipment Rentals

85

Midwest Caissons 2014 Inc.

70

Wallworks Acoustic Architectural Products Inc. 65

CP Distributors Ltd.

125

Modern Cladding Finishes Ltd.

58

WD Industrial Group

43

127

W.R. Meadows of Western Canada

47

Crystal Glass Canada

62

Moso Bamboo Canada West

Wescor Food Equipment

34

53

West Edmonton Mall

43

Nelson Lumber Co. Ltd.

113

Western Weather Protector Ltd.

114

Nilex Civil Engineering Group

90

Witten LLP

25

Custom Electric Ltd.

4

N.A.I.T.

Cutting Edge Landscaping Ltd.

91

NB Benny’s Contracting Ltd.

Daam Galvanizing - Edmonton

93

Delnor Construction Ltd.

101

6

ECA Breaking Ground | Summer 2021 129



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