Top Projects 2010: Industrial/Runner-Up

Walmart Perishable Distribution Centre, Enmax District Energy, and Enbridge Hardisty Contract Tankage Project


Blue may be one of the colours of the Walmart brand, but its new $75-million Perishable Distribution Centre in Balzac is definitely green.

Touted as one of the most energy-efficient distribution facilities of its kind in North America, Walmart expects the building to be about 60 per cent more energy-efficient than its other traditional refrigerated distribution centres. Among the features: LED lights, solar panels and a white thermoplastic polyolefin reflective roof.

Crediting the owner, consultant groups and its trade contractors, general contractor Stuart Olson Dominion Construction points out the job was brought in on time and on budget. "Key decisions early on in the project - such as the selection of a joint free concrete slab system (Twintec USA) that reduces maintenance costs and operational down times - have been key to the success story of this massive distribution centre," Stuart Olson said.

Petroff Partnership Architects designed the centre. Engineers were: William Leung & Associates (Engineers) Ltd. (structural), Ellard-Willson Engineering Ltd. (mechanical), Ellard-Willson Engineering Ltd. (electrical), Counterpoint Engineering (civil) and M. Karan Engineering (refrigeration).


Designed to deliver energy to commercial buildings in Calgary's core, Enmax's $30.5-million District Energy Plant certainly doesn't look like an industrial plant.

With 10 m ceilings, a low-E curtain wall and feature lighting, it fits with the architecture of the downtown area while churning out hot water energy for neighbouring buildings.

The 23,000 sq. ft facility can generate 60 MW of thermal energy and can be expanded to generate up to 100 MW, with an additional 3.5 MW of electrical co-generation. The buildings it heats will no longer require their own boiler systems.

More than 15 per cent of the materials used had recycled content and the facility includes low-flow faucets and a solar panel system on the roof. It is expected to be certified Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Silver.

Graham Construction & Engineering was general contractor. The plant was designed by Gibbs Gage Architects, and Read Jones Christoffersen provided structural engineering while Emans Smith Andersen Engineering Ltd. were the mechanical engineers. Mulvey & Banani International (Alberta) Ltd. were the electrical engineers.


One of this year's runners-up projects was also one of our most unique entries: The largest tank coatings project in Canada with a construction cost of $15 million.

The work, by Park Derochie Coatings Ltd., was at Enbridge Inc.'s Hardisty, Alta., Contract Tankage project, which includes 19 new tanks adjacent to Enbridge's mainline system terminal. The project involved applying internal linings, roof coatings and painting.

This wasn't a small job. Tanks range in size up to 530,000 barrels each and are capable of holding a total of 7.5 million barrels of oil - enough to fill 48,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

Working safely was a huge goal; there were zero lost-time accidents in 153,000 hours of work. But there were challenges. They included operational interruptions, revised completion dates, exterior product specification changes and work during poor weather. Sometimes the temperature was below -30ÂșC.

"Due to weather conditions," the contractor pointed out, "jobs of this nature can see premiums in the neighbourhood of 20 [per cent] - this project was executed at a mere 5 [per cent]."

2015 ACM MMM Button

2015 ACM Email Button


Free account to gain access to ACM digital editions.