2014 National Steel Design Awards of Excellence announced

The Canadian Institute of Steel Construction (CISC) recently announced the winners of its biennial National Steel Design Awards of Excellence competition during its annual conference in St.John’s, Newfoundland.

The prestigious CISC National Steel Design Awards are open to architects, engineers, developers, owners, contractors and other stakeholders involved with a building, bridge, industrial or other steelwork project in which engineering demands, architectural considerations or sustainability requirements influenced the designer’s choice of steel as the most appropriate structural solution.

The awards are a culmination of a two-year competition that brings together regional winners from across the country in four award categories: Architectural, Engineering, Sustainability and Bridges.

The winner in the Architectural category is Capilano Cliffwalk by Morrison Hershfield Ltd., Marc Luc Lalumière and Solid Rock Steel Fabricating Co. Ltd. As part of its vision to create experiences that people are amazed by, the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park in North Vancouver produced Cliffwalk, an eco-adventure that allows people to access the face of a 90-metre-high granite cliff on a labyrinth-like series of narrow steel cantilevered bridges, stairs and platforms through an old-growth West Coast rainforest. Due to its first-of-a-kind design and site constraints, each piece was custom designed and built through an intricate step-by-step process that would minimize as much as possible its impact on the surrounding area.

In the Engineering category, the winner is the Canadian Museum for Human Rights by Yolles, A CH2M Hill Company, Smith Carter Architects/Antoine Predock Architect PC, PCL Winnipeg and Walters Group Inc. Located in the geographical centre of Canada at the forks of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers in Winnipeg, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights’ iconic architectural forms resulted in significant structural complexity including large column free spaces, unconventional load paths, long cantilevers, and highly stressed connection points between steel forms and concrete walls, all necessitating the use of structural steel. Structural steel was used to overcome numerous design and construction challenges for the architecturally complex museum superstructure.

The winner of the Sustainability category is the Nova Scotia Power Corporate Headquarters in Halifax by BMR Structural Engineering Limited, WZMH and Marid Industries Ltd. The project site occupies a prominent location in downtown Halifax, with significant frontage on the public boardwalk that lines the western edge of Halifax harbour. The project involved the retention and adaptive reuse of a former power-generating plant to become the headquarters for the provincial electrical utility. The building is the first in Atlantic Canada to achieve the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification. This designation was received from the Canada Green Building Council and is one of the nation’s most well-recognized certifications in green building design and construction.

And finally, in the Bridges category, the winner is the Peace Bridge by Santiago Calatrava LLC/Stantec Consulting Ltd., Graham Infrastructure Ltd. and Norfab Mfg. (1993) Inc. The Peace Bridge spanning the Bow River in Calgary has become a favorite with photographers since it opened in May 2012. The stunning structure is a pedestrian/cyclist bridge that connects the vibrant neighbourhoods of Sunnyside and Hillhurst to the city’s downtown core. The bridge structure is a sleek helix-shaped steel truss system developed over a semi-elliptical cross-section in a single span of 126 metres. Due to the challenging design criteria of a long span, wide bridge deck, and low structural depth, structural steel was chosen for its high strength-to-weight ratio. The Peace Bridge has become an instant icon of the city and has vitalized the surrounding neighbourhoods.

More information on the winning projects can be found at http://cisc-icca.ca/awards/national/2014