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VOL. 9 NO. 1
SOUTHEAST REGIONAL CORRECTION CENTRE NOW OPERATIONAL IN SHEDIAC
By ANDY WALKER
It is always a little different constructing a building without an easy exit, Trevor Saulnier jokes. Story on page 8 to 9
NALCOR LAUNCHES MUSKRATFALLSJOBS.COM For anyone interested in working on the Muskrat Falls project, Nalcor Energy now has a website where you can add your name on thelist of potential workers. Story on page 3
SKILLED TRADES EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES INCREASING New facilities for skilled trades education are cropping up in the Atlantic region. Story on page 7
NSCC UNVEILS ITS GREEN HOME DESIGN By HEATHER KILLEN • The Spectator
From the outside the Pilikan house looks like other houses on the block, but on the inside it’s a lean, green energy innovator.. Story on page 11
PICTOU WELLNESS CENTRE
PASSENGER RAIL CUTS TO IMPACT NORTHERN NB By ANDY WALKER
People who live in northern New Brunswick have been hit hard by Via Rail’s decision to reduce passenger service between Montreal and Halifax. Story on page 12
TRANSPORTATION DECISIONS IMPACT SOUTHWEST NOVA
Two recent transportation decisions will have a significant impact on Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Story on page 12
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General contractor Bird Construction began initial site preparation for the Pictou County Wellness Centre in July of 2010. Story is on page 10
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NOVEMBER 2012 | THE AC&TJ | Construction
Architectural students contribute to Habitat for Humanity
econd and third-year students of the College of the North Atlantic’s (CNA) architectural engineering technology program are putting the skills they’ve learned to good use with Habitat for Humanity. Craig Greene, architectural engineering technology instructor at the CNA Ridge Road campus (in St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador) and build chairman with Habitat for Humanity, said in a news release while students have contributed to this worthy cause for the past three years by drawing up architectural designs, this is the first year they pitched in with on-site manual labour. “I started with Habitat for Humanity in 2009 and one of reasons I got involved was because I saw a great potential for our students in the trades and technology programs to learn on the job and apply their skills to help their community so it’s a form of community engagement,” Greene said. “I’m an architect and I believe in what Habitat for Humanity does but I also saw an opportunity for our students to benefit from that experience, to learn on site and have a good time.” Greene, who is also the program’s instructional co-ordinator, worked as a liaison for CNA and Habitat for Humanity to get the students in the field. “What I really wanted to do is provide an opportunity for students. The second year-students went on site and did wood framing on the first floor. In the previous term they had studied wood framing so this gave them an opportunity to actually look at and apply what they had learned in school,” Greene said. “It gave them a hands-on experience as opposed to simply a classroom experience, plus there’s the team building aspect
where you send everyone out for a day and they meet contractors and they work on a job site. Everyone appeared to have a pretty good time at it.” Nineteen second-year students have framed some of the interior walls on the first floor of a structure. Initial construction began on the home Oct. 9 and is projected to be finished in early December. “We’re trying to put those three pieces of puzzle together; what they learn in school, how to apply it and how to apply it so they help their community,” Greene said. Last week, (Nov. 5) third-year students in the architectural program put their skills to work in the same Habitat for Humanity project but by installing insulation and vapour barrier. “The idea was to get second years on to do framing and third years to do insulation and vapour barrier so they can relate to what they’ve learned in class,” said Greene. “Contractors like it too because they get a bunch of young people in their 20s on site who kind of add an energy.” Ian Martin, a second-year student from Mount Pearl, said it was a beneficial experience for everyone in the class. “I really enjoyed it because I have a casual background in building, particularly in wood frame type stuff. It was good to learn the innards of the structural nature of a house,” Martin said. “In being able to work with the Habitat for Humanity professionals, not only were they able to give us pointers, but I got to talk to a couple of them and ask about the industry so it was really beneficial.” Martin said being able to apply what you’ve learned in school and actually see it coming to-
Students from the College of the North Atlantic’s architectural engineering technology program put skills they’ve gained to good use for Habitat for Humanity. (Photo: submitted to The Telegram)
gether in the real world gives students a better understanding. “When it’s on a computer screen and it’s a flat drawing is one thing,” he said, “but when you can see it built it takes on a different kind of life.” While Greene believes it’s great for students to gain practical experience, he said there’s a bigger picture to look at. “What I said to the students
at the end of the day was ‘I hope you had a good day, I hope you had fun, I hope learned something don’t forget you helped to put a family in a home. You didn’t just nail in some two by fours. At the end of the day you assisted in putting a family in a home.’ And, that is what Habitat for Humanity is about,” Greene said. The Telegram
Plan B delays cost about $83,000 By RYAN ROSS • The Guardian
elays in construction on the TransCanada Highway re-alignment have cost about $83,000 since work started almost three weeks ago (early October). Kim Horrelt, the (Prince Edward Island) province's director of infrastructure, said it will be the provincial government and not the contractor that will have to cover any of those costs associated with the delays. "They (the contractor) certainly would not have tendered for delays," she said. Included in the total cost from the delays was $55,000 for security at the work site and $15,000 for snow fencing the department used to mark the construction area. The Transportation Department attributed another $13,000 in costs to the contractor because of the delays on the so-called Plan B. Horrelt said she didn't know how long there would be security at the construction site. "We're playing it by ear," she said. Although work ground to halt for several days after it started because protesters were blocking machinery and it was considered an unsafe environment at the construction site, the project has been progressing since then.
Horrelt said (Oct. 23) the project is a little behind but the plan is to work later into the season, depending on the weather. "Slight delay but it will all work out in the end," she said. Since work got underway, the province has also spent $18,900 on advertising related to the project. Horrelt said part of the environmental assessment was a requirement to inform the public about the project. "We thought that a public information campaign would be the best way to go about that," she said. That campaign has finished, Horrelt said. The government's might not be the only bill to pay after the delays: about 15 protesters face fines for trespassing. Throughout the protests, many of those involved have argued they have a right to free assembly on the work site because it is Crown land. But Bruce Pardy, a lawyer and law professor at Queen's University, said while people do have a right to assemble, they don't have an unlimited right to go wherever they want, even on Crownowned property. Continues on page 8
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Construction | THE AC&TJ | NOVEMBER 2012
ABOVE: Helmets to Hardhats Canada is a web-based program that offers access to career postings. Its employees are former men and women in uniform who can help veterans translate how their military skills and experience meet civilian job requirements. Assistance can also be provided to arrange apprenticeship training to achieve journeyperson certification in more than 60 trades in the building and construction industry. At the Sept. 18 launch Canadian Forces members and construction workers joined Dr. Robert Blakeley, (Board of Directors); Joe Maloney, (Board Chairman); Veterans Affairs Minister Steven Blaney, and Helmets to Hardhats Canada Executive Director BGen (retd) Gregory Matte.
Worker-safety report delayed Changes to Nova Scotia’s workplace safety regulations should be in front of legislators before the spring construction season gets underway, according to the Chronicle-Herald. The newspaper quoted the labour department’s worker-safety division’s acting director Gregory Green. He also answered questions about why
the department’s annual report on workersafety won’t be published until December. Green said format changes and internal approval were responsible for the delay. The Chronicle-Herald noted that Executive Director Jim LeBlanc had taken on a lower-level position with the department and that Vince Garnier, the director of investigations, had taken a leave of absence.
Nalcor launches muskratfallsjobs.com For anyone interested in working on the Muskrat Falls project, Nalcor Energy now has a website where you can add your name on the list of potential workers. The list compiled through the site will be used by contractors who, once the project is sanctioned, will be pressed to hire Labradorians and
Newfoundlanders before looking outside the province for workers. The website is: www.muskratfallsjobs.com Its start up was announced during a Labrador North Chamber of Commerce event in Happy Valley-Goose Bay this morning (Nov. 16). The Telegram
WorkSafeNB cuts assessment rates A reduction in workplace accidents in New Brunswick is allowing WorkSafeNB to cut its assessment rates for next year by 15
per cent. The rate will drop from $1.70/$100 of payroll to $1.44.
Protesters say fix ailing workers’ compensation system [New Glasgow, NS] – Injured worker and labour representatives held a protest at the Nova Scotia Legislature in Halifax Tuesday (Nov. 13) to highlight the poverty faced by those injured in Nova Scotia workplaces. They’re calling on the Government of Nova Scotia to take action to correct what they say are injustices of the workers’ compensation system. “The workers’ compensation system in Nova Scotia has lost its way,” said Mary Lloyd, president of the Pictou County Injured Workers Association. “Employers continue to receive protection from civil liability for deaths and injuries occurring in their work places, but workers are living in enforced poverty due to the penalty-driven provisions of the Workers’ Compensation Act.” Lloyd cites the funding of employers by the
Workers’ Compensation Board’s (WCB) board of directors to fight workers in appeals, the downloading of legitimate claims costs onto the public system, and the failure of the WCB to be a neutral third party administrator as examples of the deterioration of the founding principles of the workers’ compensation system. A Royal Commission of Inquiry is the best method of investigating and identifying the problems that are plaguing the system, she said. “This action will send a clear message to the citizens of Nova Scotia that the NDP government supports the fair treatment of injured workers and that the founding principles of the system are revered in our society.” The News
New fee for developers Starting Jan. 1, developers will be forced to pay $200/house to build homes in new sub-divisions. Canada Post said it is imposing the fee to partially cover the cost to install community mailboxes. The corporation, that lost money in 2011 and
2012, said the mailboxes were no different than utilities, infrastructure or roads. CP emphasized that the $200—that does not apply to condos or apartments—will be charged to developers, not new home buyers. Developers disagree.
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The Atlantic Construction & Transportation Journal is published quarterly by TC Media (Atlantic Region),a division of TC Media Inc. The opinions expressed in the Atlantic Construction & Transportation Journal are those of the authors and do not represent the official views of TC Media or its management. The Atlantic Construction & Transportation Journal and its contributors can accept no legal responsibility for loss through any error in information contained herein. Contents of the Atlantic Construction & Transportation Journal may not be reproduced without reproduced without written consent of the publisher, who accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, transparencies and other material. The publisher is not responsible for statements or claims by advertisers. Mailed under Canada Post Publications Mail Agreement No. 40064924
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NOVEMBER 2012| THE AC&TJ | Construction
SeaFort Capital buys A.W. Leil Cranes O ne of Pictou County’s (Nova Scotia) largest privately owned companies has new owners. SeaFort Capital Inc. has partnered with senior managers Larry MacDonald and Robert Fraser to acquire A.W. Leil Holdings Limited and its related operating entities. “It’s been a lot of fun, but I guess it’s time to move on to another chapter,” said Allison Leil Sr. who started the company in 1958 with a tentonne crane he describes as 75 per cent homemade. A.W. Leil is now a leading Atlantic Canadian crane rental and lift services business. The company operates a fleet of more than fifty cranes under the trade names A.W. Leil, Sagadore Cranes and Cape Breton Cranes, and has five offices and more than sixty employees. “We are excited to invest in an established Nova Scotia business alongside experienced and dedicated operating partners,” said Rob Normandeau, president of SeaFort. “A.W. Leil boasts a committed group of skilled employees and a modern fleet of cranes. We intend to continue the legacy that Allison Leil Sr. and his family have established through decades of reliable performance.” As part of the agreement, everyone in the company will keep their jobs, Leil said. He said that was one of his main concerns because the employees have put so much into the company. “You’re only as good as your people,” he said. “It doesn’t matter how good your gear is if you don’t have good people on it.” Over the 54 years since he started the company, Leil said he’s developed a deep familiarity
with the people and the equipment that made up his company. From working on houses to windmills and large jobs on the waterfront, he’s watched the company grow to a size he never dreamed of when he was a young man working up north and scheming how to start his own company. At 78, though he said it was time to let it develop in someone else’s hands. “The company has potential to grow big time yet,” he said. MacDonald said he and Robert Fraser are happy for this chance to partner with SeaFort. “We will continue to run the business out of our Pictou County head office, but will now have access to advice and assistance from SeaFort on matters related to A.W. Leil’s strategic direction and future growth,” said MacDonald. “We share a strong commitment to safety and a belief in excellent customer service. This transaction will provide a seamless transition to a new ownership structure, which is great news for employees and for customers.” While he admits he’s a bit sad to let go of the company, Leil said he’s glad to see it will be owned by a company with Pictou County interest. “I am confident that they will treat our people fairly and uphold our values as they work to grow and develop the business,” Leil said. Leil and his son Allison Leil Jr. will both stay on as consultants with the business for a year. Halifax-based SeaFort Capital makes controlling investments in small and medium sized Canadian businesses and partners with experienced managers to build value. SeaFort is a private company governed by the following
A.W. Leil Cranes, a company whose equipment is visible to those driving by exit 26 on Nova Scotia’s Trans Canada 104, has been sold to SeaFort Capital. (Photo: Adam MacInnis/The News)
directors: Scott Brison, Scott McCain, Michael Milligan, Rob Normandeau, Donald Sobey and Rob Sobey. SeaFort looks to invest in Canadian companies with earnings of between $2 million and $10 million that have a strong tangible asset base and operate in an “old economy” industry, such as manufacturing, distribution or equipment services.
Normandeu said A.W. Leil Cranes fit the description of what they were looking for. He said they reviewed more than 100 companies across Canada and made only 12 offers. Normandeu and Leil both declined saying what the sale price was, with Normandeu saying only that it was fair. The News
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FOR CONSTURCTION COMPANIES The Nova Scotia Construction Safety Association (NSCSA) is pleased to announce the Workers’ Compensation Board’s New Practice Incentive Rebate Pilot Program. There has never been a better time to earn an NSCSA Certificate of RecognitionTM. Starting on January 1, 2013, construction companies who achieve the NSCSA CORTM, prior to December 31, 2013, may be eligible for a WCB rebate in 2014. The amount of the rebate varies by size of firm and premiums paid in the 2013. The anticipated rebate amounts are categorized as follows:
REBATE RATE CATEGORIES Category 1 * WCB Premiums <$5,000 Category 2 *$5,000.01 to $9,999.99 Category 3 * WCB Premiums >$10,000
10% Rebate $500 Rebate 5% Rebate
If you would like to know more about the New Practice Incentive Rebate Pilot Program, please contact the NSCSA. You can reach us by email or telephone:
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Construction | THE AC&TJ | NOVEMBER 2012
wo roundabouts in Summerside and Pooles Corner, Prince Edward Island opened in late August. Chapman Brothers was the rotary contractor for the $1-million-plus Pooles Corner roundabout. Traffic Control Manager Inez Clory told The Guardian that perfect weather allowed the project to be completed ahead of schedule. Blueprints for the Charlottetown roundabout (at the Vogue Optical intersection), that’s expected to cost $2.5 million, should be ready next spring. City Council approved the final $53,680 design—that will be produced by Hatch Mott MacDonald—at its Oct. 9 meeting. But councillors are skeptical that construction will get underway before 2014. The actual project hasn’t been approved and federal funding has not been assured. In November the city okayed $25,000 for CBCL to design a future roundabout for the Brackley Point Road-Sherwood Road intersec-
tion at the Charlottetown Airport. The estimated price of the project is $1.5 million. Both roundabouts will be cost-shared equally by the federal and provincial governments and the city. TRURO A roundabout on Robie Street in Truro, Nova Scotia—to handle traffic headed into and out of town from Highway 102—will not be constructed until next spring. Department of Transportation officials told the Truro Daily News that the three-month project would be tendered this fall and almost completed before tourist season in 2013. But Truro Town Council planned to issue a tender for a roundabout at the intersection of Lower Truro and McClure's Mills roads by the end of November. Public Works Director Andrew MacKinnon told the paper he hoped construction on the $250,000 project would get underway before Christmas.
Bridge won’t be finished until spring Safety concerns have resulted in design changes to the Middle River Bridge in Bathurst, New Brunswick. The Northern Light reported that because the design changed there was a delay in steel fabrication. It will be next spring before the concrete and
paving stages of the $2m project are completed. Built in 1956, the old wooden Middle River Bridge was to have been replaced by a pre-fabricated steel structure this fall. The paper said the cost of the project would not increase because of the delay.
Plows will be back on the roads New Brunswick Transportation Minister Claude Williams has changed his mind. On Sept. 19 he announced that the province will continue its winter maintenance program and plow rural roads that have less than three (fully occupied) homes.
Last November the government cut the plowing as part of its $4 million cost saving measures. Williams said the cuts—that affected over 250 homes, involved 176 roads—only covered 90 kms and saved about $130,000.
New Brunswick’s $540-million Route 1 Gateway officially opened in October - nearly one year ahead of schedule. In the photo NB Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Claude Williams discusses the project with Dexter Construction Company Ltd. Design Manager Patrick Chouinard. (Photo: Communications New Brunswick)
Route 1 Gateway finished nearly a year ahead of schedule New Brunswick’s $540-million Route 1 Gateway officially opened in October – nearly one year ahead of schedule. The entire 240 kilometres of highway between St. Stephen and River Glade will be a divided, four-lane highway. The project includes 55 kilometres of newly twinned highway between Waweig and Lepreau, with major upgrades along the rest of the route. The project comprises two provincial contracts: a design/build contract and an operation, maintenance and rehabilitation contract. Dexter Construction Ltd. was responsible for the design/build portion of the work, while
Transfield Dexter Gateway Services Ltd. is responsible for the operation, maintenance and rehabilitation until 2040. Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Claude Williams said the project was on budget and almost a year ahead of schedule because of teamwork between the department and Dexter Developer General Partnership Ltd. Project Director Harry Varjabedian concurred. "Dexter Construction has taken a great deal of pride in this project from the beginning, and this was shared by the entire team and the province, from employees to management to suppliers."
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NOVEMBER 2012 | THE AC&TJ | Construction
Instructor becomes first woman to get landscape Red Seal in NB By ANDY WALKER
'Barcode' pattern on new civic centre part of architectural design [Truro, NS]- If the oddly patterned siding on the new Central Nova Scotia Civic Centre (in Truro, Nova Scotia) has given you pause for thought, you are not alone. "It's funny," said project manager Paul Smith. "Reaction is mixed. People either love it or hate it and I get if from both sides of the fence." The design was actually architect driven, Smith said and deliberately chosen to reflect the centre's modern tone. "It was very intentional. And there is a design pattern, believe it or not," he said. "The building is very modern and they wanted to be a little more distinctive than a warehouse." Although the three-colour pattern may ap-
pear random, he said, the reason for the colour variation "was really to break up the monotony of these massive walls." "So it was done on purpose," Smith said. "It was done with design intent and purpose in mind, it wasn't sort of a harebrained idea. "In fact its kind of funny because I've had some people refer to it as the barcode building, which is not offensive. That sort of name lends itself to the modern architecture that it's designed with." And for those who haven't yet decided exactly how they feel about the siding design, Smith suggests giving it a bit of time. "It took awhile to grow on me but it did eventually." Truro Daily News
Second man died at construction site By TARA BRADBURY • The Telegram
A second man died at the Fortis Place construction site (in St. John’s, Newfoundland & Labrador) Thursday afternoon (Oct. 25), The Telegram has learned. A construction worker died of what is believed to be health-related causes, said Hugh Donnan, a spokesman for Service NL — the government department which oversees Occupational Health and Safety. The coroner has yet to determine the official cause of death, he said. This is in addition to the 61-year-old construction worker who fell six storeys from the building shortly before 4 p.m. There were high winds and rain at the time. It appeared the man had fallen through a wooden barrier at the top of
the building. An RNC spokesman told The Telegram he’s not aware of any ongoing police investigation into the accident, and the file has been turned over to Occupational Health and Safety. Donnan said a stop-work order has been issued for the site, located at the corner of Springdale and New Gower streets in St. John’s. “Not because of any violation that we’re aware of, but so we can have a proper look at the site,” he explained. Two OHS officers attended the scene Thursday afternoon along with police and rescue personnel, he said. “There’s not much more I can say,” he continued. “We don’t know at this point if all procedures were followed or if this is something that may end up in the courts.”
Worker dies from injuries An Atlantic Industrial Services employee has died from injuries he received Aug. 30 after falling almost 5.5 metres from a building near the Dartmouth side of the MacKay Bridge. According to the Chronicle-Herald, the man
was drilling a suspended piece of concrete wall. The structure was being removed from the building. The incident has been investigated by the Nova Scotia Labour Department.
Construction Association of New Brunswick
Moncton Northeast 297 Collishaw Street Moncton, NB E1C 9R2 Executive Director Bill Dixon
TEL: (506) 857-4038 FAX: (506) 857-8861
email@example.com www.mneca.ca Administrative Services Coordinator Nancy McNaught
Membership Services Coordinator Judy Cormier
The siding design pattern on the new Central Nova Scotia Civic Centre in Truro was deliberately chosen to reflect the centre's modern tone, says the project's manager. (Photo: Harry Sullivan/Truro Daily News)
Jackalyn Darling jokes she wanted to challenge for her Red Seal in landscape horticulture to make sure she kept ahead of her students. She teaches the first of three blocks needed to obtain the Red Seal at the New Brunswick Community College in Woodstock. The province has only been offering the coveted designation, which allows those passing the test to work anywhere in Canada, for the last couple of years. Darling is the first woman in the province to achieve the designation. She successfully made the case before the Apprenticeship Board that her experience in the field should allow her to be grandfathered in and to challenge for all three blocks in a four-hour exam. Prior to coming to Woodstock in 2006, she looked after the grounds and was a teacher at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College. She also
worked for a number of private sector nurseries. “I was pretty familiar with Block One because that is what I teach but I had to brush up on the other two blocks,” she explained. “I spent a couple of days straight studying—you never really know what they are going to ask.” The instructor hopes to use her new designation to challenge her students to achieve their goals. She made the decision “to be the best I could be” in her chosen field and hopes her students sense that enthusiasm. Darling said landscape horticulture is a relatively new trade in New Brunswick and “I am proud to be the first woman certified.” The instructor sees landscape horticulture as a growing field, adding that enrolment in her course and interest in the profession has increased since the trade became certified. Darling said there are now over 100 Red Seal certified landscapers in the province.
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Construction | THE AC&TJ | NOVEMBER 2012
Skilled trades educational opportunities increasing
University of New Brunswick professor Eric Hildebrand received the 2012 Award of Academic Merit for his long-term contribution to the advancement of the academic field and to the development of future leaders in transportation at this year's Canadian Transportation Awards. The awards were presented during the Transportation Association of Canada’s annual national conference in Fredericton Oct. 19. In the photo are: NB Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Claude Williams, Hildebrand, and Transportation Association of Canada President Doug McNeil. (Photo: Communications New Brunswick)
Israel killed in workplace accident David Israel (67) of Melvern Square, Nova Scotia was killed Sept. 18 in a workplace accident on Highway 10 in Albany. According to Annapolis RCMP, a dump truck rolled over and pinned the victim who was directing traffic.
The dump truck was crawling at a very low speed but a power line snagged its elevated box and flipped the vehicle over. The Spectator reported that the dump truck operator was distraught, taken to the hospital and then later released.
New facilities for skilled trades education are cropping up in the Atlantic region. Newfoundland & Labrador introduced a unique opportunity for students. It has invested $490,639 into a Tower Crane Operator Training Program that was set to begin in October at the Operating Engineers College campus in Holyrood. Graduates of the 12-week training session will have acquired the mandatory qualifications to work on the Hebron construction site or any other NL project. With a combination of hands-on training and classroom-based instruction, students will develop and apply the skills needed to operate a tower crane. They will use a state-of-the art computerized simulator that features: a cab-like enclosure, actual crane controls, a surround visual-system, life-like worksites and an instructor’s station. Students will also gain real field experience in using a 16-tonne tower crane, similar to those used on the Hebron construction site. Three training sessions, with about 10 students, were planned for the year. The province also launched a new journeyperson mentorship plan in November. Red-seal tradespeople will be paid by the province to teach apprentices. Premier Kathy Dunderdale believes the $2 million program will increase the number of woman in skilled trades positions. NL Construction Association President and Chief Operating Officer Rhonda Neary was impressed. She said the province was “making a long-term investment in the future supply of skilled workers. The association is very pleased with the direction we are seeing in the areas of apprenticeship and skills development.”
Ivan Gedge also supports the project. “I encourage businesses to learn more about the Journeyperson Mentorship Program and how it will build a qualified workforce by strengthening the apprenticeship system and helping more people reach journeyperson status.” The Business Representative/Organizer, Atlantic Canada Regional Council of Carpenters, Millwrights and Allied Workers said, "This program offers a great incentive for employers and businesses to support employment opportunities and grow our provincial economy.” PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND The Prince Edward Island government invested $4.7 million in the East Prince Career and Technical Education facility. The 25,000 square foot campus offers aerospace training, automotive and carpentry under one roof. It includes a new robotics lab, skilledtrades classrooms and alternative education spaces. The $4,675,000 facility that opened in September, serves more than 500 students from Summerside, Kensington and Kinkora schools. NOVA SCOTIA Next years Skilled Trades 10 will be an option for students at the Skilled Trades Centre at Forest Heights High School in Chester Basin, Nova Scotia. Grade 11 courses will be available later in the 2013-14 school year. The province has also invested $2.3-million investment will provide the Nova Scotia Community College with $775,000 for mobile training equipment and $1.5 million for a mobile training lab; both can be used by students anywhere in the province not just on campus. The mobile training lab will be ready to provide students with nationally accredited training in fall 2014.
Plan B delays cost about $83,000 New blueprint unveiled for Continues from page 2 "Rights are not absolute," he said. Pardy used a federally owned airport as an example and said people don't challenge the government's ability to restrict where the public can go on that type of property. "The mere fact that the Crown owns a piece of land doesn't necessarily lead to the conclusion that every member of the public has an unlimited right to go there," he said. As construction has proceeded, the protesters have argued running machinery while they were on site would create a safety hazard, while the
government has said the protesters would make it unsafe by going on site while machinery is in use. Although Pardy said he wasn't familiar with the specifics of the Plan B project, safety would be a valid reason to keep people off a construction site, whether it's a government project or not. "That's a typical rationale for putting up fences around construction sites," he said. Pardy also said that doesn't mean there is a right to run protesters over with construction equipment if they manage to get on site.
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Nova Centre megaproject After months of consulting residents across the province, the design team behind the Nova Centre unveiled a new blueprint for the downtown megaproject at Pier 21 on Wednesday night (Oct. 3). The project which includes the new convention centre borders Prince, Market, Sackville and Argyle streets and promises to be more pedestrian friendly and inline with the current architectural theme of the city. The initial plan that’s since been scrapped, after the consultation process began in July, would have seen a giant glass encased ballroom form a superblock by crossing Grafton Street.
Now the 80,000 square foot space that will fit anywhere from 2,000 to 2,500 people has been moved up 25 feet. It would stretch from Grafton extending to Argyle. Wednesday’s public input session was another opportunity for residents to have their voice heard on the project design. Most of the 150 people who attended the meeting expressed concerns about maintaining the vibrancy of Argyle Street and minimizing the project’s intrusiveness on the traditional architecture in the downtown core. The final design plan is scheduled to be unveiled Dec. 7. Metro Halifax
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NOVEMBER 2012 | THE AC&TJ | Construction | SOUTHEAST CORRECTIONS CENTRE
SOUTHEAST CORRECTIONS CENTRE
The Southeast Regional Correctional Centre in Shediac, New Brunswick.
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SOUTHEAST CORRECTIONS CENTRE | Construction | THE AC&TJ | February 2010
Southeast Regional Correction Centre now operational in Shediac By ANDY WALKER
It is always a little different constructing a building without an easy exit, Trevor Saulnier jokes. While most public buildings are designed to be user friendly in terms of access, understandably that is not the case with a correctional facility. The new Southeast Regional Correction Centre in Shediac, New Brunswick is the latest lock-up built by Maricon Construction Management Limited. Saulnier, who was project manager for the Shediac facility, said the company also did some work at the federal prison in Springhill, Nova Scotia and at a provincial facility in Saint John, NB. The $36.4-million Southeast Regional Correction Centre replaced the Moncton Detention Centre, which closed in late June. “Construction took over two years and at peak times there would have been over 100 people working at the site,” the project manager said. “We had a relatively mild winter last year so we didn’t lose a lot of construction days then — there were some minor delays throughout construction, but nothing out of the ordinary for a project this size.” The construction phase started in September of 2009 under the supervision of the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure. The centre is designed to house 180 adult offenders, and employs 107 staff, including 80 correctional officers. Saulnier said one aspect that did tend to make construction easier was the fact it was a new site
rather than renovations to an existing facility. “Obviously there can be security issues when you are at a correctional facility that is operational,” he said. The project manager said the facility has a state of the art security system including names throughout the building and a computer-controlled system to open and closes cells. The facility covers 8,156 square meters with three accommodation units, each containing 30 cells.
It has: admitting and discharge areas, a dedicated space to provide medical service to inmates, program rooms, segregation, and secure visitation areas. “Security is obviously the number one con-
cern,” Saulnier added. The facility does have one thing in common with virtually every other public building in Atlantic Canada. It was built to comply with a Silver rating under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program. It has been designed to maximize energy efficiency and minimize water use. It was also built with environmentally friendly building materials. “LEED certification is more the rule than the exception now,” Saulnier said. Modern Construction (1983) Ltd. of Moncton did the site preparation work for the project. "This new correctional centre, which will increase our overall inmate capacity and provide greater security and improved working conditions for our staff," Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General Robert Trevors said during the official opening. "I am proud of the work that has gone into this project. It is intended to serve New Brunswickers for the next 75 years." Trevors said the new structure was a big improvement over the old detention center in Moncton and “It is an important step in renewing and re-organizing our correctional system. We will now be able to make the most efficient use of the facilities we have." The new facility, together with the Dalhousie Regional Correctional Centre that opened in November of 2011, increases the province's inmate capacity from 346 to about 550. .
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February 2010 | THE AC&TJ | Construction | PICTOU WELLNESS CENTRE
PICTOU COUNTY WELLNESS CENTRE
New wellness centre now operational By ANDY WALKER
After several years of planning, the Pictou County Wellness Centre is now a reality. The $38.6 million facility opened in mid-November on an 11-acre site just off Highway 104 at the intersection of MacGregor and Westville Roads in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia. Empire Company Ltd donated the land for the project. Included under the roof of the 155,000 square foot building are: a twin pad arena with two NHL-size ice surfaces; a six-lane, 25-metre pool and a warm water pool; a walking track; regulation size gymnasium; a dedicated fitness centre with studios; multi-purpose community and conference space; dedicated youth and child-minding rooms and a licensed child care facility and multi-use spaces; food service areas and administration offices. The main arena has fixed seating and dedicated VIP boxes to accommodate 1,680 spectators for hockey games and a total capacity of 3,117 attendees for concerts and major events. And the Pictou County YMCA has relocated to the site and operates the aquatic, fitness and child care/child minding facilities. DSRA Envision Architects of Halifax designed the Centre. The company has also designed a number of the sports-related facilities throughout Nova Scotia including the Sackville Sports Centre, The Tower athletic centre at Saint Mary’s University and the Canada Games Centre in Halifax. Bird Construction was the general contractor for the project, and Rene Cox said initial site preparation began in July of 2010. The company’s district manager for NS and Newfound-
Tilers work on the warm water pool at the Pictou County Wellness Centre. The 155,000 square foot facility also has s a six-lane, 25-metre pool.
land said there were 150-175 workers on site during peak periods. “It was a pretty big project for us,” Cox said.
“There were a few hiccups along the way— there always is on a project this size—but, generally speaking, things went pretty smoothly.” Construction was coordinated by the Pictou County Wellness Centre Building Authority, Inc., that is comprised of representatives from each stakeholder municipal unit within the county. Ron Baillie is both chair of the authority and Warden of the Municipality of the County of Pictou. “Our community has been waiting for this day for a long time,” he said. “This project has been in the works for many, many years and thanks to the dedication, hard work, cooperation and generosity of many people, we are proud to finally open the doors to a facility that the people of Pictou County truly deserve,”
Baillie stated. Mike Adam, who is general manager of the facility, said it would allow the area to host regional and national events— something that was not possible before. “We’re ready and eager to show what this building can do and the opportunities it provides to this community.” The arena will be home to the Pictou County Crushers of the Maritime Hockey League and the Truro Weeks AAA Midgets. Both the federal and provincial governments contributed $11 million to the Pictou County Wellness Centre while the Municipality (and included communities) have collectively committed $9 million. The balance came from through a communities-wide fundraising campaign.
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GREEN BUILDING | Construction | THE AC&TJ | February 2010
NSCC unveils its green home design By HEATHER KILLEN The Spectator
The Pilikan house in Middleton, Nova Scotia looks like a normal house on the outside, but on the inside it’s a green energy innovator. (Photo: Heather Killen/The Spectator)
rom the outside the Pilikan house looks like other houses on the block, but on the inside it’s a lean, green energy innovator. This demonstration site at the Annapolis Valley Campus of Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) in Middleton officially opened to the public on Sept.18. Described as a living lab, the house is a practical classroom for students to explore the practical applications of theories heard in the classroom. These theories can be tested and even improved for future residential designs. This model home, which is R-2000 certified, has been designed as a new way of thinking about sustainable residential development. The builders aimed to design it to be heated for $200 a year. There are more than 30 monitoring and control points throughout the home that track energy consumption and help students and researchers determine its efficiency. So far, its Energuide rating is 91 out of a possible 100. The name, Pilikan (Bill-ee-gun), arose from the Mi’kmaw words for “new house” was suggested by a former student and was chosen to describe the modern, “green” learning technologies incorporated into the building. Dennis Kingston, academic chair, says the model home is serving the college as a test site and learning lab for students to explore how new energy technologies can be used in a residential application. In recent years the college has taken a leading role researching practical applications for
green energy design and technology. The college wanted to create a residential test site that would give students of the Energy Sustainability Engineering Technology program an opportunity to work hands-on with the new technology and building practice. The 1800-square-foot prototype (designed to look like every other house on the outside) costs in the neighbourhood of $290,000 to build, according to Kingston. Over the long term this home promises to be more affordable to actually live in. Aside from its ambitious goals for E-ratings, the house was built to maximize the southern exposure, utilizing solar power to dramatically cut down on energy consumption. Passive energy design elements such as wide white window sills and white beams reflect sunlight around the space to reduce the need for artificial light, while the open design allows air to move freely, making it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. The house design is the result of intense collaboration with stakeholders such as the Nova Scotia Home Builders Association, who provided vital feedback, according to Kingston. Construction on this project began in May 2011 and was completed last fall. Students at the campus began collecting and analyzing data earlier this year. “This is a living example of what we are trying to do as a college, by giving students a collaborative and practical approach to applying new technologies for energy sustainability to traditional residential construction,” he said. “We can improve the quality of life through building sustainable communities.”.
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NOVEMBER 2012 | THE AC&TJ | Transportation
Passenger rail cuts to impact northern NB By ANDY WALKER
Via Rail Engine 6445 pulled the Canadian Football League’s Grey Cup Train into Halifax, Nova Scotia on Oct. 12. Hauling two Via and two Canadian Pacific cars carrying the Grey Cup, its history and memorabilia, Engine 6445 left Vancouver Sept. 9 and travelled east. After its Maritime stops the train headed for Toronto where the 100th Grey Cup game was played. Prior to its 10-week historic tour across the country Engine 6445 was one of 53 Via locomotives that were completely overhauled. According to Dartmouth, NS expert David Othen and others, the locomotive was stripped to the frame, equipped with a rebuilt engine and a new a 480 volt HEP diesel generator. Other enhancements included: upgraded wiring, electronically controlled pneumatic brakes and copper air piping. The mid-life rebuild will allow Engine 6445 to operate for at least another 20 years. (Photo: Heather Jones)
Recent transportation decisions will impact Southwest Nova Two recent transportation decisions will have a significant impact on Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. In September the town learned that the province could commit up to $21 million over a seven-year period to re-establish its ferry service to Portland, Maine. But in November Twin Cities Air announced its scheduled flights from Yarmouth to Portland would end Dec. 31. The Nova Scotia government cut subsidies to Bay Ferries in December 2009 because it wasn’t viable and losses had reached almost $7 million a year. Premier Darrell Dexter said the province is now prepared to invest in a long-term ferry service managed by a qualified operator. He said funding from all levels of government was necessary and that businesses and residents of Southwest Nova had to support the project. An expert ferry panel report listed conditions
mandatory for a viable service that included the right type of vessel and a sophisticated marketing strategy. The report said with the proper investments the ferry business could be modestly profitable within eight years. At press time the province was meeting with private-sector operators. The lack of a ferry has affected numerous businesses in the region including the Auburn, ME airline that has been operating for two-anda-half years. Twin Cities Air owner Nate Humphrey said his decision to leave was based on the lack of passengers in the winter months, rising fuel prices and regulations. He said despite provincial assistance it wasn’t economically viable. Humphrey praised customs and airport officials in Yarmouth and the businesses and people in Southwest Nova.
People who live in northern New Brunswick have been hit hard by Via Rail’s decision to reduce passenger service between Montreal and Halifax. Starting in late October, ‘The Ocean’ departs Halifax on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays only. The Montreal departures are on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Previously, passenger trains ran both ways six days a week. That meant people in Bathurst or Campbellton could board the train in the morning, come into Moncton to conduct business, and return home the same day. Ted Bartlett said that had been happening for decades. “Moncton has long been a service center for much of northern New Brunswick, especially medical appointments.” Bartlett is with Transport Action Atlantic, the regional wing of a national organization working to provide more public transportation options. He said it is no longer possible to make the trip in one day—now there must be a layover of one day or, in some cases, two. Via Rail maintains the cuts were a matter of economics. When he met with a delegation of mayors and MP’s from northern New Brunswick in Bathurst, Yves Desjardins-Siciliano said there has been a continued decline in ridership on The Ocean over the last 15 years. He said traffic has gone from 255,000 people in 1997 to 134,000. The Chief Legal and Corporate Affairs Officer and Corporate Secretary of VIA Rail said, “Our duty is to properly manage Canadian taxpayers' money compels us to make difficult decisions." He said over the past five years, Via Rail has invested more than 25-million dollars in repairing its locomotives and The Ocean's rolling stock, in addition to renovating its stations and infrastructure in the region. The Ocean service continues to be improved by adding a car with a panoramic view yearround, Desjardins-Siciliano stated. Bartlett said the company failed to point out that traffic on the run actually went up five per cent between 2010 and 2011. “There will certainly not be any increases now be-
cause of the cuts” The Transport Action spokesman pointed out that there is a lack of other public transportation options in northern New Brunswick since there is no air service in most areas, and bus service in the Maritime region is in a state of flux since the departure of Acadian Lines. A new bus service is scheduled to start before the end of the year or early in 2013. “The future of public transportation in northern New Brunswick is standing out on Highway 11 with your thumb out,” Bartlett said. He said part of the solution lies in having legislation that governs the operation of Via Rail, which would spell out the relationship between the passenger service and the freight railways, especially CN. Bartlett explained that Amtrak, the passenger service in the United States, has an Act of Congress that provides it with access to tracks to freight railways and controls what they pay for that access. “Via has nothing like that and when CN raises the rates, they have no choice but to pay or try to cut other costs,” he explained. Bartlett noted that CN is now in the process of trying to abandon its rail lines between Pacific Junction (located just outside Moncton) and Bathurst. (CN says it needs $50 million for repairs and more rail traffic to make the run viable.) He said if that happened, the Miramichi area would be entirely cut off from either passenger or freight service. Other measures have been taken. Widler Jules of Atholville has filed a motion in Quebec Superior Court (Via is headquartered in Montreal) trying to stop the cuts. Bartlett said his group welcomes any action that could slow the process down, but they are concentrating their efforts on lobbying politicians to pressure for legislative change. NB Premier David Alward is also taking steps to keep the “vital” services in operation. He told the Times & Transcript Nov. 8 that CN, Via Rail, and both levels of government were at the table working to clarify what investments were required to keep the trains running.
Airlines break records Air Canada set a record when it filled 82.9 per cent of its passenger seats in October. With a load factor of 81.2%, West jet also broke records last month. The air-
line also set records in July, August and September. Porter Airlines 59.4% October load factor was down this year compared to 2011.