Canadian Consulting Engineer


October 1, 2012
By Canadian Consulting Engineer



Cape Horn interchange an “engineering marvel”

What the province of B.C. called an “engineering marvel” took place in September in the Vancouver area. Overnight on September 22, girders were lifted into place to complete a new overpass in the Cape Horn Interchange, while traffic continued to pass underneath on Highway 1 using one lane in each direction.

The new overpass connects Lougheed Highway to Highway 1, and is one of the final construction pieces required to connect the Cape Horn interchange to the Port Mann Bridge.

The interchange is already the busiest in the province, carrying 120,000 vehicles a day and often creating a bottleneck for drivers. After some of its most complicated engineering takes place this fall, it will ultimately include 15 new ramps as well as other structures.

Cape Horn is just part of the mammoth Port Mann/Highway 1 improvement project, the largest transportation infrastructure project in B.C.’s history. Overseen by the Transportation Investment Corporation, a crown corporation, the megaproject covers 37 kilometres of highways from Vancouver east to Langley.

It includes a new 10-lane Port Mann bridge over the Fraser River that is due to be completed in December.

Hatch Mott MacDonald and MMM Group are leading the team of engineers on the onshore element of the scheme on behalf of Peter Kiewit and Flatiron Constructors.


Calgary’s Centre

Street Bridge comes alive

A new LED lighting system on Centre Street Bridge in downtown Calgary enhances one of the city’s most important historic assets. The lighting washes the four arched spans of the 1916 Beaux-Arts landmark with warm white light. The lights also dramatize four lions (modeled after the large cats in Trafalgar Square) which stand guard on pavilions at each end of the bridge.

The 396-metre crossing over the Bow River links downtown Calgary with the Crescent Heights neighbourhood. It is also a gateway to the city’s Chinatown.

Lighting Design Innovations designed the lighting. SMP Engineering were the electrical engineers. Simpson Roberts Architecture Interior Design was the preservation architect.

The project is part of an initiative by the city to animate its urban environment by adding decorative lighting to architecture and heritage resources.


CBCL of Halifax meets

Chinese delegation

Six Chinese officials representing the massive state-owned Qingcaosha Raw Water Project in Shanghai met with senior managers at CBCL Consulting Engineers in Halifax in August.

Sponsored by the World Bank, the Chinese officials’ North American study tour focused on energy efficiency in raw water production and operations.

Discussions during the two-hour meeting at CBCL covered areas such as the proper sizing and cleaning of intake structures between the reservoir and pumping stations, the relining of existing water lines, leak detection, and the monitoring of water usage via metering.

With files from Andrew Safer.


Trans-Canada Highway

is 50 years old

The 50th anniversary of the Trans- Canada Highway was marked in September with the placing of a plaque on the original commemorative cairn located on the highway east of Revelstoke, in the spectacular mountains of southeastern British Columbia.

The same day, a new Donald Bridge was opened as part of a $63-million upgrade to 3.5 kilometres of the Trans-Canada between Revelstoke and Golden. Associated Engineering and Urban Systems engineered the bridge.


Toronto’s power

grid gets a boost

Tunnelling work for a major power transmission corridor across Toronto has begun.

MMM Group is doing the civil design for the 2.4 kilometre tunnel, which will carry six high voltage cables carrying an additional 100 MW of power to neighbourhoods in the city.

The tunnel is 3-metres in diameter inside and will run 60 metres below ground from Bayview Avenue to Yonge Street.

Ed Jetten, the project engineer with MMM Group, explains that the new concrete tunnel has to be at such a depth because of environmental concerns and the fact that the line crosses deep ravines.

Known as Hydro One’s Midtown Electricity Infrastructure Renewal Project, the $115-million corridor replaces an existing power line which is nearing the end of its service life. The project is part of the provincial government’s plans to rebuild or replace approximately 80% of its electricity infrastructure.

Consulting Engineers of Ontario (CEO) applauded the start of the transmission project. Barry Steinberg, chief executive officer of CEO, said: “We are pleased to see the government prioritizing the need to replace aging electrical equipment and identifying how to increase capacity for our city that continues to grow in size and number. These are the types of decisions that don’t always get the attention they deserve because the infrastructure is invisible to the public. What people need to know is that the underground cable is approaching the end of its life and, if not maintained, cell phones, TVs, lights and other everyday essentials are at risk of not working the way we expect them to.”


PEO calls for “Provincial

Engineer” after

Elliot Lake tragedy

In the wake of the collapse of the roof of the Algo Centre Mall in Elliott Lake in June, Denis Dixon, P.Eng., president of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), asked the province to create the position of a “Provincial Engineer.” The person would have a role similar to the province’s Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Dixon said in a letter to Premier Dalton McGuinty that a provincial engineer “could take overall authority for engineering works in the province, to provide specific direction in the event of situations like Elliot Lake, and to ascertain whether such situations are indicative of systemic problems.”

While a public inquiry is proceeding into what caused the tragic events in Elliot Lake, which resulted in two deaths and several injuries, PEO has begun its own investigations.


Engineers Canada has new CEO

Kim Allen, P.Eng. is the new chief executive officer of Engineers Canada. Engineers Canada is the Ottawa-based national organization of the 12 provincial and territorial licensing associations.

Allen was previously at the helm of Professional Engineers Ontario, where he was chief executive officer and registrar for over a decade.

Catherine Karakatsanis, P.Eng., president of Engineers Canada, said: “His [Allen’s] strategic thinking, experience and leadership are an excellent complement to our team.”


Genivar on S&P/TSX

GENIVAR, based in Montreal, has been added to the Standard & Poor TSX Composite Index. The index includes only the stock prices of the largest companies on the Toronto Stock Exchange, as measured by market capitalization.

“Being included in the S&P/TSX Composite Index is a tremendous recognition of GENIVAR’s progress over the past few years,” said Pierre Shoiry, the company’s president and chief executive officer.

BBA of Mont Saint-Hilaire, Quebec has opened an office in Toronto. This is the expanding company’s second location in Ontario following the opening of an office in Timmins last fall.

AECOM has acquired a company of 900 employees in South Africa. The company, known as BKS, is a multi-disciplinary firm that has operations across Africa.

ISL Engineering and Land Services of Edmonton has announced that Hassan Shaheen is appointed to its board of directors. Shaheen joined ISL in 2003 as general manager of transportation planning.


Stories continue below

Print this page

Related Stories