The Northern Rockies Regional Recreation Centre (NRRRC) project consisted of Phase 3 of a 35,000 sq. ft. addition to an existing complex. The Phase 3 construction included a new aquatic centre, child play area, public viewing area, fitness area, climbing wall, and a combined racquetball/squash court. Phase 3 also includes a partial basement and 3rd storey mezzanine which houses both mechanical and electrical spaces to service the new aquatic and fitness centres. Some renovations to the existing Phase 2 portion of the facility were also part of the Phase 3 construction.
Houle was responsible for the HVAC controls/DDC, pool controls, access control, CCTV, and new fibre optics data network system for this project. As part of this project, Houle installed a concert level professional lighting system in the natatorium that consists of a 200 head total lighting rail on the North and South sides of the pools. The lighting rail system also incorporates an arrangement of low power consumption emergency lighting for a sleek look in the area, keeping the area architecturally clean. The lighting was specifically installed to minimize any spotting or glare to the people in and out of the pool, ensuring maximum safety for everyone using the area. Another feature of the lighting is it can be programmed to change color for aesthetics and programed to play pre-programmed lighting shows with the use of a high-end lighting control system.
Many challenges arose while working on this project. There was a 40% increase in the project scope with no extended construction period. The team was faced with extreme winter weather conditions such as temperatures from 30°C to -45°C and snowfalls heavy enough to shut down the community. Incoming freight and logistics of material was also a constant issue due to the extremely limited deliveries into the area, and trade stacking caused difficulties as all contractors were on strict timelines to complete their duties. The location of the project was isolated, which limited access to materials and material resources. Because of these challenges, Houle had to be extremely proactive with planning to ensure that materials were delivered and available to avoid loss of productive installation time. Houle was able to work with other contractors to coordinate schedules and make sure they were able to get their job done.
The building was mostly concrete, which meant that precision planning and installation was required. Houle worked closely with structural drawings to ensure there was no compromise in the building’s structural integrity while installing the electrical systems.
During the construction period, the facility maintained the operation of two-and-a-half ice rinks, a curling rink, a lounge, two banquet halls and a visitor’s centre, which meant meticulous planning so that any work in these areas would not interfere with the centre’s day-to-day operations.
By using Houle’s prefab plant and Houle’s warehouse, Houle was able to meet the demands of the project without sending an abundance of manpower to an already trade crowded site. Houle was able maintain a strategic and proactive work plan while keeping performance at an optimal level.