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Three contractors receive VRCA excellence awards for Aldergrove community centre

Peter Caulfield
Three contractors receive VRCA excellence awards for Aldergrove community centre
SUBMITTED PHOTO—The Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre and Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience project opened in Langley, B.C. in 2018 and consists of a 70,000-square-foot building and an outdoor water park.

Three contractors have won 2019 Silver Awards of Excellence from the Vancouver Regional Construction Association for their part in the Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre and Otter Co-op Outdoor Experience project.

The winners are Horizon Landscape Contractors Inc. in the Trade Contractors — $1 Million to $2 Million (President’s Trade Award) category; Canstar Mechanical Ltd. (Mechanical Contractors — $3 to $9 Million); and Graham Design Builders LP (General Contractors — $15 Million to $50 Million).

The Aldergrove Community Centre, which opened in Langley in 2018, comprises a 70,000-square-foot, two-storey building and outdoor water park.

The facility has a NHL-sized ice arena and, on the second level, a running track, fitness centre and multi-purpose flex room.

The 600-seat arena is home to a junior hockey team, as well as minor hockey, figure skating, ringette and lacrosse programs.

The aquatics complex is open year-round. In winter, the 25-metre lanes, lifestyle pool and hot tub remain open under a wood canopy, making it the only all-year outdoor pool in Greater Vancouver.

General contractor Graham Design Builders LP project manager Jasman Cheema says the community centre has an unusual and innovative rain and storm water harvesting system.

The system uses the storm drains from the roof and drains from the pool deck to collect water and store it in the clear stone used as back-fill for construction of the water park.

“The water harvesting system enables the owner to use non-potable water to flush toilets and urinals,” said Cheema. “And any excess water goes into the bioswale (channel that carries storm water runoff) where it can be stored and filtered naturally through the ground before it enters the township’s sewer system.”

The system required a long and extensive network of underground piping and conduits: 70,000 feet of rink piping; 18,000 feet of pool piping; 3,700 feet of sanitary, sewer and water piping; and 90,000 feet of electrical conduit.

The centre has a number of sustainability features:

•The water in the pools is heated, in part, by solar panels, heat recovery ventilation units and excess energy from the ice rink’s refrigeration plant;

•The water park sub-grade was filled with clear stone to provide integrated rainwater management — storage for harvested rain waters, storm retention and water table infiltration; and

•Wood from the demolished Aldergrove Elementary School, which previously occupied the site of the community centre, was recycled and used to build part of the centre’s frontage, as well as the benches and counters in the facility’s lobby. Bricks from the old school were used on the feature wall at the arena’s main entrance.

Langley-based Horizon Landscape Contractors Inc. did the base preparation, concrete architectural walls and flat work, including exposed washed blue glass concrete.

Its work on the project also included fencing, gates, railings, benches, planting, rain harvesting garden, pavers, irrigation, maintenance and playground surfacing.

“We collaborated really well with the landscape architects and Graham to bring the budget down by over one-third for our original scope without sacrificing the design intent expected by the Township of Langley [owner],” said Horizon V-P construction Brian Dougherty.

The project’s tight scheduling was a challenge.

“Having a large scope to complete in a short period of time, while taking on additional, last-minute work to help Graham complete the scope items in time, doubled our contract to $2 million,” said Dougherty.

“But we were able to hit the dates we needed to, and with very little overtime required, thanks to Chad Leyenhorst, our project manager.”

Dougherty says Horizon won a Silver Award because of the last-minute scope increases and the contractor coordination that were required “to deliver a premium product to the public without gouging the general contractor or the Township of Langley for last minute changes.”

“The park is a shining star in the neighbourhood that shows off nearly all aspects of scope contained in our portfolio of services,” he said.

Canstar Mechanical Ltd. of Port Coquitlam had the design-build mechanical contract for the project.

The design of the community centre emphasized energy optimization, says Canstar president John Urquhart.

“The project had many green initiatives, such as the use of solar collectors and a rain harvesting system that collects both rain and pool deck water,” he said.

Urquhart says the work was very demanding and required careful coordination with the forming contractor.

The project presented a number of challenges.

“Because of the chlorine in the pool water, we had to use CPVC [chlorinated polyvinyl chloride] plastic pipes instead of copper pipes,” said Urquhart. “And building an outdoor pool in the winter on a tight schedule for a fixed facility opening date isn’t easy.”

SUBMITTED PHOTO—The sub-grade of the outdoor water park at the Aldergrove community centre was filled with clear stone to help provide integrated rainwater management.

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