Built to replace the pre-existing old infrastructure, the new operations facility for BC Hydro Nanaimo is a 100,000 square feet facility. It includes administrative offices, industrial garages, interior cranes, service pit, emergency generator, warehousing, and out buildings. Conforming to LEED standards, the building, which is engineered for post disaster specifications, features exposed wood beams and attractive design elements.
This was a multi-phase project over the course of three years. Houle’s scope of work included full electrical, data cabling and terminations, distribution and generator installation, security raceways, fire alarm to multiple site buildings, digital metering system, power monitoring, lighting, lighting controls, and audio visual.
Houle was forced to work out of sequence for most of the main building construction due to delays by the other trades. This caused Houle to lose momentum and to lose time remobilizing to other parts of the large building. Other challenges were the amount of owner driven changes to the original design. Staying organized, updated, and on schedule required much effort. By creating teams with lead hands, Houle was able to stay focused, on track, and on schedule.
Through careful planning and coordination with the construction team, Houle stayed on schedule and exceeded the expectations of the general contractor. The electrical engineer was also very impressed with the install, specifically the distribution which he now holds as the new standard moving forward. Lean strategies were also influential in the project’s success. Kanban and 5S helped the crew stay efficient.
“The new BC Hydro Nanaimo Operations Centre completed by Houle in 2016 had been well managed, well coordinated, and successfully built construction project. As the Electrical Engineer of Record and licensed Construction Electrician, I could fully appreciate the level of effort and skills that Houle Team demonstrated on this job. Well done! I am looking forward to working together with Houle on future complicated and challenging projects!”
~Alex Riftin, Principal/Director, Electrical Engineering, Omicron