With the majestic Rocky Mountains jutting up in the background, the town of Banff draws about 3 million visitors each year, making it one of the most visited communities in western Canada.
Tourists come for the skiing and the hiking. The cozy resorts with the big fireplaces. The spas and the restaurants.
Construction company Standard General Inc. came to Banff this year for another reason: as general contractor for the $22.8-million "Banff refreshing" project.
The goal of the project went beyond replacing century-old infrastructure. It involved reconstructing the streetscape to better profile Banff's natural surroundings, making the downtown more pedestrian-friendly and enjoyable for residents as well as visitors.
Not only did 2,800 m of water and sewer lines need to be removed and replaced in accordance with Parks Canada regulations, Standard General and the other contractors, including Associated Engineering and Earth Tech, had to complete the work with a minimal amount of disruption to the community. The town created a massive public awareness campaign to get the word out on what was going on and how to cope with the construction.
The work, officially to be completed Nov. 15, occurred in the 100 and 200 blocks of the downtown. Notable features of the project include:
- Wider sidewalks
- More rest spots so people can take in the scenery
- New LED lighting that has been designed to shine downward where needed, instead of into the sky
- New street/directional signage for vehicles and pedestrians
- Custom-designed street furniture and fixtures that directly reflect the surrounding elements and landscape
- More trees and landscaped areas
- Designated roadside loading zones that should make drop-offs and pick-ups more convenient
- Addition crosswalks
In addition, the town and its contractors worked to use as much recycled and reusable materials as they could. For example, asphalt removed from the original road was taken to the nearby Cascade Pits for grinding. It was then reused as the base for the new road. And the scrim for the wrapping of the hoarding will be reused by the town for future construction projects.
When Red Deer County learned the city of Red Deer wasn't going to renew a longstanding agreement to use the city's landfill site, the county had six months to come up with an alternative.
The solution: a new waste transfer facility.
The scope of the fast-tracked project involved extensive landscaping to 20 km of land south Red Deer. It also involved the construction of a number of facilities such as a scale and scale house, pesticide container recycling building and a household hazardous waste building.
On April 20, the Horn Hill Solid Waste Transfer Station opened to deliver full waste services. It handles about 1,700 tonnes of waste a month.
Horn Hill is unique not only because of the volumes of sold waste processed but also because of the materials it diverts. It accepts the usual household waste such as paper and plasticrd, but it also diverts scrap metal, tires, electronic waste, household hazardous waste, and empty pesticide container jugs from the agricultural community.
PCL Construction Management Inc. built the building while UMA was the landscape architects. Project Managers were: Darryl Langille, B.A., Arch. Tech., A. D. Williams Engineering, and Wayne Gustafson, P.Eng., A. D. Williams Engineering Red Deer branch manager
If you didn't know it, you could mistake the new $21.5-million parkade at Rockyview General Hospital in Calgary for an office building. That's because, unlike other parkades, you don't see open gaps along the side of the building. Instead, the exterior is clad with coloured glass and aluminum panels.
The parkade, located in front of the hospital, has been built into the side of a hill so that the first floor is level with the roadway at the bottom of the hill and the fourth storey is level with the main floor of the hospital. The parkade consists of precast concrete with a cast-in-place earthen retaining wall that's four storeys high. It has 547 stalls.
The Stantec-designed structure is expected to accommodate a one-storey office building in the future. The general contractor was Cana Management.