VANCOUVER — Consulting engineers were recently honoured for work to improve transportation in British Columbia.

The Consulting Engineers Awards 2024 were handed out at the B.C. Transportation Conference for the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – British Columbia, Feb. 15 in Vancouver.

Thurber Engineering Ltd. and McElhanney Ltd. shared the design and contract preparation award for structures for their contribution to fixing a wall that collapsed on Highway 1’s Malahat Tunnel Hill during the November 2021 floods. Temporary repairs led to the reopening of Highway 1 within 18 hours, with continuous two-way traffic four days later.

The B.C. Transportation Consulting Engineers Awards were announced at the B.C. Transportation Conference for the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – British Columbia Feb. 15. The 2024 Award of Excellence for Design and Contract Preparation – Structures was given to Thurber Engineering Ltd. and McElhanney Ltd. for their work on the Highway 1 – Malahat Tunnel Hill Washout Project.
B.C. CONSULTING ENGINEERS AWARDS — The B.C. Transportation Consulting Engineers Awards were announced at the B.C. Transportation Conference for the Association of Consulting Engineering Companies – British Columbia Feb. 15. The 2024 Award of Excellence for Design and Contract Preparation – Structures was given to Thurber Engineering Ltd. and McElhanney Ltd. for their work on the Highway 1 – Malahat Tunnel Hill Washout Project.

To permanently re-establish a roadway on a steep, unstable slope, the companies designed a new 100-metre-long retaining wall to create better drainage for future extreme weather, indicates a release.

R.F. Binnie & Associates won the design and contract preparation award for roads. In April 2018, high waters from Narcosli Creek washed away sections of West Fraser Road, 17 kilometres south of Quesnel. The spring freshet in 2020 caused further damage and reactivated historical slides, which severed five locations on the road, creating a 45-kilometre gravel detour, states the release.

The contractors realigned a 5.5-kilometre stretch of road through mountainous landscapes, including a 124-metre bridge that crossed the creek. Binnie worked with local Indigenous groups and contractors to create a safer, more climate-resilient road, with wider lanes and shoulders and roadside barriers.

AECOM Canada Architects Ltd won the alternate transportation award for designing a replacement for Skytrain station escalators. The 44 escalators in the Expo line’s original 17 stations date back to the late 1980s and were near the end of their service life. AECOM’s work aimed to prevent mechanical issues and long-term shutdowns and led to significantly enhanced safety and usability. During the upgrades, the firm created a system to maintain smooth pedestrian traffic flow.

The rehabilitation of the Old Skeena Bridge No. 473 won WSP Canada Inc. the award for construction management and supervision services. The bridge was built in 1925 and the project became significantly more complex than expected which led to WSP working with its partners to increase the project’s scope. The contractors were able to open the bridge three months ahead of schedule. WSP’s approach to sustainable practices also preserved the natural habitat and upheld the bridge’s status for traditional First Nations activities, adds the release.

Urban Systems Ltd. won the specialized engineering services award for the Highway 16 – Terrace Commercial Vehicle Inspection Station. Replacing a decommissioned facility in B.C.’s northwest region, the new building features improved technology, a new weigh scale and a covered truck inspection station. Contractors completed the project ahead of schedule.

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