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spring 2003

From Dream to Reality UBC poised to lead Canada in earthquake research with versatile new facility The Department of Civil Engineering is pleased to report that the new Earthquake Engineering Research Facility (EERF) will be in full operation in the fall of 2003. Construction was completed in May, and installation of the equipment will proceed throughout the summer months. This has been a 20-year dream in the making for the earthquake engineering team of the Department. “We are very excited by the new opportunities for large-scale seismic testing that will be made available through the Facility,” says Dr. Carlos Ventura, Director of the Facility and Professor of Civil Engineering. Team members have established some of the finest and most active earthquake engineering experimentation and research activities in Canada over the past 30 years, and this new facility will allow them to tackle problems that have been outside their reach until now. For instance, more accurate evaluations of seismic retrofit In this issue: Message from the Acting Head Student enjoys co-op placement View from the marketplace Engineering Management Education at UBC Construction and IT go hand in hand People Recent events & achievements

Above: Finished construction housing shake tables and state-of-the-art multimedia technology. Left: Conceptual rendering by Ramsay Worden Architects Ltd. as originally proposed to CFI. techniques and methods will be conducted, providing more realistic representations of the behaviour of structures. For example, the team will investigate the advantages and limitations of using “smart materials” for the seismic retrofit of structures. The new EERF brings together under one roof an impressive array of test equipment for specialized research on earthquakes and their effects on structures and the soil that supports them. The 30foot-high overhead area of the EERF will enable the testing of large-scale structural models. Three different earthquake simulators (or shake tables) are housed in the facility. The centre-piece of the facility is the six-degrees-of-freedom shake table, with a footprint of about 3 m by 3 m and the capacity to shake 30-ton structures. The six degrees of freedom allow researchers to

mimic more realistically the shaking produced by actual earthquakes. There are also plans to increase this table to a footprint of 4 m by 4 m in the near future. The second shake table has a footprint of about 6 m by 6 m, will have a payload capacity of about 100 tons, and will be used for the uni-axial testing of large-size structures. To put this in perspective, a small, two-storey house weighs approximately 50 tons. This shake table will also be used for geotechnical studies of large-scale foundation models to investigate important problems in seismic design, such as the interaction between a structure and its supporting soil and soil liquefaction effects on structures. The EERF will also have available to it a third, portable uni-axial shake table for testing small structures and building components. ...continued on page 7




Message from the Acting Head Much has happened in the past year, and this pace of change seems to be in the works for the future! The most visible event has been the construction of the new Earthquake Engineering Research Facility – our cover story. The plans and funding for this valuable addition to the Department were in place over a year ago, thanks to the tireless efforts of the former Head, Prof. Alan Russell, and Prof. Carlos Ventura, with a lot of support from the rest of the faculty and staff. By the time this newsletter is out, we’ll be occupying the building and fitting out the equipment. The big day when all the shaking can take place is still some months away. We are planning to hold a ribbon cutting in September. Our Research Spotlight article in this issue is on a topic dear to the hearts and minds of most civil engineers – construction. This is where almost every civil engineering project takes physical form, and it doesn’t just involve muddy boots and hardhats. Construction – one of the largest sectors in Canada’s economy –

has gone high-tech, and in this global world, the competitiveness of Canadian engineers and companies depends on an intensive drive to utilize the best technologies that can be developed. Our construction engineering and management group is at the forefront of many exciting developments in the use of information technology for project management, risk assessment, construction planning, scheduling and resource allocation, and many other aspects of the total construction and management process. Hopefully, most civil engineers become interested in management as their careers develop. To jump-start this interest and to develop potential managers, the Faculty has established an Engineering Management Option. Program Coordinator, Prof. Sheryl Staub-French, explains the program on page 3. Also on page 3 is our “View from the Marketplace,” with some valuable advice to young (and old) engineers from John Scott, P.Eng., CEO of Scott Canada. Certainly, our Faculty is continuously striving to place increased emphasis on the management and communication skills that can be developed in our programs. At the heart of every enterprise are the people who make everything happen. Other pages of this newsletter feature a few of our new additions to the Faculty, one of our

many Adjunct Professors, a Ph.D. student, a Co-op student, and a few of the many career events and achievements of department members. We seem poised for much more in the coming year. As I reach the end of my one-year stint as Acting Head, I want to extend a very big Thank-You to Prof. Alan Russell, my predecessor, who set the stage for much that has occurred in the past year, and who has provided much advice as “Head-Emeritus.” Equally valuable has been the loyalty and support of all the faculty and staff. Robert Sexsmith Acting Department Head

Third-year Civil student enjoys exotic co-op placement In June 2001, third-year UBC Civil Engineering student Divana Whitley left Canada for a one-year co-op placement with the Taiheiyo Cement Research and Development Laboratory in Sakura City, Japan. Divana was involved in many research projects during her work term, including testing a product made only in Japan called Eco-cement (a mixture of municipal incinerated ash, sewage sludge, limestone and clay). She worked on finding ways to improve the cement and to determine the types of products for which it could be used. One of the reasons Taiheiyo Cement participates in UBC’s Co-op Program is to provide its employees with experience working with North Americans. For Divana, working in Japan required the ability to adapt to a very different 2


workplace culture. She was the only female in her work group, which led to some challenging situations. For example, her coworkers would tell her that many things were too dangerous for her to do. According to Divana, “being the only female in my work group also led to some interesting conversations and interesting looks when we went out after work.” She hopes that working in a typically maleoriented job helped her Japanese coworkers realize that a woman is capable of doing the same job as a man. Living in Japan for a year also offered amazing opportunities to explore the country. The most grueling, but beautiful, experience was to watch the sun rise from the top of Mt. Fuji after a five-and-a-halfhour climb to the top in the dark. Divana returned to Canada in June

2002 and was back to full-time studies at UBC in September. For her final work term this summer, Divana is moving to Lloydminster, AB to work for PFM Engineering, a structural consulting firm. SPRING 2003

A view from the marketplace by John Scott, P.Eng., Founder and CEO of Scott Canada Construction Group, a master builder of high-rise condominiums, hotels, and commercial and light industrial projects.

“The construction marketplace is showing encouraging signs of recovery. Companies and engineers that see how the marketplace is changing will prosper.” There are three emerging trends associated with a new era of growth in BC’s construction industry – each with implications for today’s civil engineers – consolidation, formation of alliances, and a shortage of engineers with leadership skills. The construction sector has typically suffered from the small size of the players, low margins, high risk, and the fact that the industry is fractured compared to manufacturing and other industries. This appears to be changing due to consolidation. Engineering groups such as Stantec, SNC-Lavalin and AMEC are in acquisition mode – buying all types and sizes of engineering and architectural companies. The German multi-national, Hochtief, has acquired significant interests in major North American construction companies, including Turner in the USA and Aecon here in Canada. A second impact on our industry is the way construction and engineering services are now being purchased. Clients, often public entities, are looking for more certainty when they build and are asking

for comprehensive, all-inclusive proposals when they tender for building projects. These requests are multi-dimensional, typically requiring expertise in design, construction, finance, business management, and maintenance. Companies have had to respond by forming alliances with groups outside their normal area of expertise, taking on new roles and risks that were seldom required under the traditional format. The forming and managing of alliances will no doubt change the way the construction industry is structured, putting pressure on traditional industry practices to change and placing a new emphasis on communication and leadership skills. Construction and engineering businesses need bright people who understand how things work, know how to communicate clearly, and have the ability to make things happen. Engineers focused only on technology and who prefer to spend significant portions of time in front of a computer screen will need to develop and cultivate relationships with multifunctional teams as well as customers. They must develop verbal and writing skills to be effective and learn how to network, how to socialize, and what protocols to

follow. An engineer without these skills will not be valued as highly as one who is able to master them. Not only do engineers need communication skills, they must be able to blend their technical and managerial skills to become effective leaders. In a new era of consolidation and alliances, these skills are essential to every engineer who is aiming for the top of his or her profession. While many approaches can be pursued, community and volunteer work provides a superb training ground for building leadership, communication and interpersonal skills. However, while professional engineers constitute one of the largest professional groups, lawyers, accountants, and physicians repeatedly outnumber them as volunteers, community leaders, and politicians. Engineering minds are amongst the best in the world, but today’s marketplace demands new levels of technical and interpersonal skills. Success will be measured by how engineers adapt to change, how they are perceived in the community, and how effective they are at getting across their ideas.

Engineering Management Education at UBC − a response to industry needs The Department of Civil Engineering now coordinates an Engineering Management option for the Faculty’s M.Eng. programs for graduate students of all engineering disciplines. This option was created in response to an emerging industry need for engineers with a management-oriented education. Students will get a more balanced education in technical and managerial subjects that will help them to effectively manage engineering and technical enterprises in existing or new businesses. The program aims to provide industry with engineers who are • prepared to become managers and leaders; • trained to work and think in an entrepreneurial way; • equipped with specific skills in SPRING 2003

accounting, finance, and business development; and • skilled in working as part of a multidisciplinary team. Students will get their technical education through their specific M.Eng. program and their managerial education through the Engineering Management option. In the program, students complete two core courses: Business Decisions for Engineering Ventures and Technology Entrepreneurship for Engineers. They are then able to customize their program by selecting from a variety of electives, covering important topic areas such as project management, intellectual property management, technology-based product marketing and development, operations research, and modeling and optimization.

The content of these courses reflects our belief that we must educate engineers so that they can leverage technology to support managerial decisions. We have seen significant and growing interest in the program from students who understand they will soon be heading into a very competitive job market. These students benefit from our success in partnering with industry leaders who join us as sessional and guest lecturers and provide “real world” contexts for engineering management issues. If you are interested in enrolling as a student or contributing as an industry participant, please contact Program Coordinator, Sheryl Staub-French, at 604827-5118 or sherylsf@civil.ubc.ca. CIVIL ENGINEERING at UBC


Research Spotlight Construction and IT go hand in hand The construction engineering and management group in the Department of Civil Engineering was started in 1982 with the hiring of Prof. Alan Russell; Prof. Thomas Froese joined in 1992; and Prof. Sheryl Staub-French joined in 2002 as a member of the group and also as Coordinator of the Faculty’s graduate option in Engineering Management. Adjunct faculty include Brian Samuels of Samuels & Co. and Bryan Shapiro of Shapiro, Hankinson & Knutson in the area of law, Dana Vanier of IRC-NRC in the areas of facilities management and municipal infrastructure, and Roger Woodhead of Woodhead Consultants in the area of project management. There are currently 30 M.Eng., five M.A.Sc., and 10 Ph.D. students enrolled in the program. The group contributes to the competitiveness of Canada’s construction industry through the design and development of new and improved information technology tools and through a deeper understanding of construction industry processes (administrative and technical) and supporting decision paradigms. The group pursues interaction with organizations in both the public and private sectors on an ongoing basis to ensure the responsiveness of its research program to industry needs.

THE PROJECT LIFE CYCLE AND ONGOING RESEARCH WORK Research activities of the group span the complete life cycle of a construction project, from preliminary feasibility analysis to facilities management, and help to provide answers to questions such as

• • • •

• • • • •

What procurement mode is best for a given project context, and how should risks be allocated? How do I know the cost implications of my design, and does my cost estimate reflect the special features of a project? What should the role of information technology play in the tendering process? How can I exchange data amongst the diverse range of computer tools used throughout the project life cycle without having to enter and re-enter data many times? How can I visualize construction data to enhance my understanding of design and construction issues? How can the planning and scheduling toolkit be improved to help with large and complex civil and building projects that involve significant repetition? How can my firm encode experience and knowledge of key personnel for reuse on future projects and for training new employees? How can I integrate all of the functions involved in planning and controlling a project and conducting a post-project analysis more effectively? How can information technology help me with the facilities management process?

Finding answers to these and other questions drives the research program. 4


For the feasibility phase, ongoing work by Russell is focused mainly on the topic of public-private partnerships – a topic of keen interest to government on a global level. Specific research projects are focused on assessing (1) the innovation and efficiency potential of different procurement modes, (2) risk identification and management as a function of a project’s environmental context (natural and man-made), physical configuration, and organizational/contractual arrangements, (3) the formulation and use of public-sector comparators (see Figure 1) with emphasis on the pricing of risks, and (4) the allocation of risk to optimize value for money.

Fig. 1. Public-sector Comparators for traditional delivery vs. FDBOM (finance, design, build, operate, maintain) procurement. For the design and bidding phase, Staub-French’s research is directed at improving the capability of designers and contractors to determine the cost consequences of different design features, both during the design phase when opportunities exist to input constructability expertise and during the tendering phase when estimators seek to ensure that costing is fully reflective of design features. Of special interest are those design features

that require a change in methods to be used, i.e., one seeks to identify break points where conventional methods no longer apply, because productivity, safety, or quality concerns render them inefficient or simply infeasible. Such features can often be missed during the pressure of the tendering phase, resulting in difficulties during the construction phase or during the value-engineering phase, when costs need to be brought in line with a client’s budget. For example, Figure 2 depicts the design of part of an office building floor, with oversized and inconsistent wall heights and curved walls, which affected productivity and required the use of additional equipment for drywall studding and application. The challenge becomes how to develop a language for representing design features that can be incorporated into 3-D CAD representations and that can in turn be interpreted for purposes of giving costspecific and design-specific feedback immediately and accurately in computerbased estimating tools. Other work for this phase deals with exploring the best use of information technology for the tendering process, with special reference to assessing

Fig. 2. Providing construction-specific design-specific cost feedback on design features using feature-based cost estimating tools. SPRING 2003

the completeness of a bid and its compliance with tendering instructions. A number of challenges provide the basis for Froese’s projects directed at the execution phase of a project. Many computer-based tools exist to assist construction personnel in the delivery of projects. However, each tool tends to be a stand-alone application, and the transfer of information from one tool to another can be a tedious and error-prone process. What is desired is the notion of interoperability amongst systems – so the challenge becomes how to develop standards that allow each tool to serve its intended purpose while making the exchange of data between tools seamless. An organization called the International Alliance for Interoperability (IAI) is tackling this issue through the development of industry foundation classes (IFCs) that reflect the needs of construction. Froese has taken a leadership role in this effort, and the current spectrum of activities includes the following: specifications, materials management, document management, and data exchange protocols. The potential scope for interoperability is shown in Figure 3. Other work by Russell that is applicable to a project’s execution phase relates to (1) a planning paradigm applicable to projects of all types, with special capabilities for treating large, complex, repetitive projects, and (2) the use of a multi-view representation of projects to

Fig. 4. Visualizing as-built data for activity status and problems encountered to date.

INTERACTION WITH INDUSTRY facilitate the exchange of information within a single system to leverage management’s ability to gain insight on project performance and to permit informed decision-making. Project views being treated within an integrated system include physical, process, cost, as-built (see Figure 4), quality, change, organizational/ contractual and regulatory. Integration allows value-added functions, such as productivity analysis and explaining the asbuilt construction story, to be included in a system. Other construction-phase-related work treats knowledge management for construction methods and technologies, data visualization strategies, and simple automated reasoning strategies to assist management personnel to cope with the mass of data and information that accompanies modern construction projects. For the facilities management phase of a project, research by Froese has examined the use of an extension of IFCs to model the condition of various physical systems and the management of maintenance and repair activities.

Fig. 3. Integrated Project Information Browser. This “project manager’s workbench” combines a 3-D view of a building with schedule, cost, resource, and cash flow views of the project. All information can be exchanged with other types of software through project data standards (from the Ph.D. work of Kevin Yu). SPRING 2003

Interaction with firms such as Scott Canada and Intertech has provided the opportunity for groups of graduate students to monitor and document construction activities over an extended time period, collect detailed data sets pertaining to productivity and site conditions, and interact with seasoned construction engineers (see Figure 5). Data collected are used both in the classroom and in the research effort. Recently, personnel from firms such as Stuart Olson, EFCO, Ted Newell Engineering Ltd., Gastaldo Concrete Ltd. and Scott Canada have generously provided insights on reasoning processes used for methods selection, and procedures used for quality control and document management. Members of the group interact regularly with project owners, designers, and contractors, as well as other industry service providers, to address research topics of mutual interest. If you are interested in finding out more about any of these research projects, please contact Alan Russell at adr@civil.ubc.ca, Thomas Froese at froese@civil.ubc.ca, or Sheryl StaubFrench at sherylsf@civil.ubc.ca.

Fig. 5. Progress photo from a project on which the detailed monitoring of the excavation and substructure phase was conducted. CIVIL ENGINEERING at UBC


People Meet the faces of Civil Engineering at UBC Dr. Pierre Bérubé, P.Eng., Assistant Professor Dr. Pierre Bérubé joined the Department as an Assistant Professor in September 2002. Prior to joining UBC, Pierre was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at West Virginia University and subsequently a senior research engineer for a membrane manufacturer, where he contributed to the development of a number of membrane technologies for water and wastewater treatment. Pierre received his B.A.Sc. and M.A.Sc. degrees from the University of Toronto and his Ph.D. from The University of British Columbia. He also has several years of consulting experience with the design, upgrade and optimization of water and wastewater treatment systems. Pierre’s research focuses on the development of membrane and advanced oxidation technologies for the removal of trace organic contaminants from water. The development of these technologies is essential to address current and emerging water quality issues, such as the presence of disinfection by-products, endocrine-disrupting compounds and pharmaceutically active compounds in the aquatic environment and in drinking water sources. In addition to his activities within the Department of Civil Engineering, Pierre is also involved with the teaching of design-based courses in the Integrated Engineering Program at UBC.

Dr. Ken Elwood, P.Eng., Assistant Professor In January 2003, Dr. Ken Elwood joined the Department as an Assistant Professor, returning to his Alma Mater after a ten-year absence. After completing his B.A.Sc. degree in Civil Engineering at UBC in 1993, Ken was awarded a 1967 Science and Engineering Scholarship from NSERC. In 1995, Ken completed the M.S. program in Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and returned to Vancouver to work for Buckland & Taylor, Ltd. During his three years at Buckland & Taylor, Ltd., Ken worked on several seismic retrofit projects, including historic concrete arch bridges on the central California coast and the Lions Gate Bridge. Ken completed his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley, where he conducted research at the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center. Ken’s research focuses on the response of structures during earthquakes and the application of performance-based seismic design methodologies. In particular, he has developed models for the shear and axial load capacity of reinforced concrete building columns designed prior to the mid-1970s in western North America. Such models will help practising engineers evaluate the capacity of the gravity load resisting system to resist collapse during severe earthquakes. Ken is heavily involved in the new Earthquake Engineering Research Facility at UBC.

Dr. Dawn Shuttle, C.Eng., Associate Professor In October 2002, Dr. Dawn Shuttle joined the Department as an Associate Professor, following seven years in Seattle. She received her B.Sc. degree in Civil Engineering and Ph.D. in Soil Mechanics from the University of Manchester, England, before joining that faculty as a member of the numerical modelling/geotechnical group. Dawn then joined Golder Associates to work on a wide range of international projects in geotechnical engineering and hydrogeology, becoming an Associate in the firm. During this time, she used numerical models to improve the efficiency of ground improvement techniques, particularly grouting. She is a member of the ASCE Geo-Institute Committee on Grouting, and she chairs the Geo-Institute Compaction Grouting Guide Subcommittee. Dawn’s research interests at UBC focus on the use of numerical models to improve our understanding of ground behaviour (both soil and rock), with particular application to ground improvement and soil-structure interaction. Models range from advanced finite element plasticity to discrete fracture network simulation. Numerical models provide a tool for understanding ground behaviour and, hence, have great potential for developing more efficient and effective ground improvement and construction techniques. The increasing use over the last five years of real-time monitoring makes high-quality numerical analysis of site operations viable and can potentially reduce construction costs markedly while improving the quality of the achieved result. The combination of monitoring and numerical modelling is particularly important for construction in silts, which respond under partially drained conditions that are difficult for standard practice to understand or account for.




Asad Udaipurwala, Ph.D. Student After obtaining his Bachelor’s degree in Construction Engineering from the University of Bombay, India in 1993, Asad Udaipurwala worked for two years in the management office of a developer of large residential townships before coming to UBC for his M.A.Sc. degree and continuing on to the doctoral program. His research work, under the supervision of Prof. Alan Russell, addresses the construction industry’s pressing need for ways to better plan and manage complex construction projects in an environment of continuous innovation in construction technologies and equipment. His work has led to the development of powerful new computer algorithms to hierarchically plan, schedule and control construction projects with an integrated ability to leverage the latest developments in construction methods collected and catalogued from both the marketplace and internally within an organization. He has worked as a project management consultant on construction projects and is currently an IT consultant with a number of organizations. Upon completion of his Ph.D., he plans to pursue a career that develops a close symbiotic relationship between academic construction research and industry.

Dr. Roger Woodhead, P.Eng., Adjunct Professor Roger Woodhead is currently an Adjunct Professor in the construction management area, teaching productivity in construction, project management, motivation and leadership. He is also a structural P.E. in Washington state and an internationally registered Lead Quality Auditor. He taught prestressed concrete to the final-year Civil class at UBC from 1985 to 1988. He has made presentations at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the University of Bath in the U.K. He was selected by the CSCE to present the National Lecture Tour in 1997-98. Roger immigrated to Canada in 1967 after gaining a B.Eng. degree from the University of Sheffield and M.Sc. (1969) and Ph.D. (1973) degrees in Structural Engineering from the University of Calgary. Roger has worked for both consulting engineering and construction companies in Vancouver, Newfoundland and Norway, including the position of Technical Services Manager for construction of the Hibernia Gravity Base Structure, where he managed a multi-national staff of over 50 people and a labor force of 100 people with an annual budget of $10 million. In 1995 Roger started his own consulting practice, Woodhead Consultants Inc., in Vancouver, specializing in the technical aspects of project management, construction and engineering. He has worked on an eclectic mix of projects, including the following: a $50 million cut-and-cover tunnel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; three “Sinking Caissons” and several sheet-piled excavations for conveyor tunnels at Vancouver Wharves; and the $1.2 billion SkyTrain Millennium Line.

From Dream to Reality...

continued from page 1

In addition to housing world-class equipment, the EERF is designed with state-of-the-art Internet, multimedia and video-conferencing technology. A unique aspect of the EERF will be its capability for long-distance connectivity with other research centres in Canada and abroad. Prof. Ventura explains, “this technology will allow researchers from other universities access to a ‘virtual laboratory,’ where they can actively interact with EERF researchers during the various phases of a research project. As well, the strengths of our research team, combined with the beautiful setting of Vancouver, will make this facility very attractive to visiting researchers, particularly from the Pacific Rim, where about 90% of the world’s earthquakes occur. We are very much looking forward to enhanced collaboration with researchers from around the world.” SPRING 2003

This dream has been made possible by $2.5 million in support from the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the BC Knowledge Development Fund, and the UBC Blusson Fund. Additional funding of $350,000 has generously been provided by the Department of Civil Engineering, the Faculty of Applied Science and several donors. However, funding alone was not sufficient to attain this dream. The enthusiasm and strong collaboration among members of the Department of Civil Engineering, UBC personnel, the project contractor, and the design team − led by Doug Ramsay of Ramsay Worden Architects Ltd. − was instrumental in making this dream a reality. Prof. Ventura also credits the significant support of Prof. Alan Russell, former Head of Civil Engineering, who oversaw the delivery of the Facility, and staff members Max Nazar,

Felix Yao and Scott Jackson. “This has been a tremendous team effort,” concludes Prof. Ventura. One of the immediate goals of the EERF is to attract industry and government partners interested in collaborative opportunities. The research team is poised to develop methods and technologies that will help reduce the seismic risks facing our society. This facility is providing the team with the additional tools necessary to minimize the devastating effects of earthquakes − ensuring a safer future for us all. For more information about the EERF or earthquake engineering research activities at UBC, please contact Prof. Carlos Ventura at (604) 822-6946 or ventura@civil.ubc.ca. CIVIL ENGINEERING at UBC


Recent events & achievements Recent events


Tarek Sayed organizes two-day Traffic Safety Evaluation Seminar Dr. Tarek Sayed and the transportation group organized two, two-day training seminars in Traffic Safety Evaluation on behalf of ICBC. The seminars focussed on how to make safety an explicit component of highway and road design.

Dr. Nemy Banthia has been elevated to Fellow of the American Concrete Institute International; he has also been designated a UBC Distinguished University Scholar in recognition of his exceptional scholarship in the fields of advanced materials and structural engineering.

Alan Russell honoured with outgoing reception

Dr. Jonathan Fannin has received the Visiting Senior Scientist Award from the Ministry of Research, Government of France.

Dr. Alan Russell was guest of honour at a reception held by the Department on July 3, 2002, to thank him for his five years of service as Department Head. In attendance were many colleagues, friends and family. Dean Isaacson spoke with appreciation of the many contributions that Alan has made to the Department during his term. Alan has spent the past months on administrative leave but has continued in service and research, and he has provided many hours of valued advice to the Acting Head. He’ll be back to full-time teaching and research in the fall term.

Celebration for Ricardo Foschi upon his retirement A retirement party was held for Dr. Ricardo Foschi in January to mark his two decades of service and outstanding research contributions to Civil Engineering at UBC. Ricardo has not gone far away, however, as he continues to teach as a sessional and emeritus faculty member.

In March, Dr. Thomas Froese received the Best Paper Award at the 2003 American Society for Civil Engineers’ Construction Research Congress for his paper “Future Directions for Modelbased Inter-operability.” Dr. Don Mavinic has been elected Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering. Dr. Frank Navin was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Vancouver Section of the Institute of Transportation Engineers; he will also be presented with an honorary Doctor of Science degree from McMaster University in June. Graduate student Vikki Ngan received the Best Thesis Award from the Canadian Institute of Transportation Engineering for her thesis entitled “A Comprehensive Strategy for Transit Signal Priority.”

Graduate student Daniel Potts was awarded a Gold Medal from the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC (APEGBC). Dr. Helmut Prion was recognized by his peers with a UBC Killam Teaching Prize and by his students with his second UBC Civil Engineering Students’ Teaching Award; he was also appointed Associate Chair of the NSERC Chair in Design Engineering. Dr. Alan Russell has received the 2002 Walter Shanly Award from the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering. Dr. Robert Sexsmith has received the 2002 Meritorious Achievement Award from APEGBC. Dr. Carlos Ventura has received the D.J. Michele Award from the Society of Experimental Mechanics and the Jai Krishna Gold Medal Award from the Indian Society of Earthquake Technology (ISET) for best paper published in ISET publications during the period 1997-2000.

Civil Engineering at UBC is a publication of the Department of Civil Engineering in the Faculty of Applied Science at The University of British Columbia. Production Contributors: Dr. Robert Sexsmith, Acting Department Head Ms Clare Quirk, Administrative Assistant Ms Sherry Green, Faculty Communications Officer, Dean’s Office Mrs. Donna Shultz, Director, Technical Communication Centre For further information about the Department of Civil Engineering and its programs, contact us at Department of Civil Engineering CEME Building, Room 2010 2324 Main Mall Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4 CANADA Tel: (604) 822-2637 www.civil.ubc.ca




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