Gardewine Thunder Bay Expand Local Facility
Facebook Twitter
Article Archive


Gardewine Thunder Bay

Gardewine Thunder Bay Expand Local Facility

by Scott A. Sumner

I asked Eric Esarte, Project Manager | Estimator at M Builds some questions about the expansion of the local Gardewine facility.

 This building is an expansion of an existing building at 230 Main Street.Tell me about the building expansion size, type of construction and finishes that were used?

"M Builds was very pleased to become involved with the project at the Keefer Terminal lands with our Client Gardewine Transport Company, with whom we have completed several projects in western Canada. The project consisted of a 10,000 sft expansion to the existing Gardewine facility including several new truck bays, enhanced loading and unloading areas, and a specialized refrigerated area for perishables. Two office areas were also constructed to accommodate the expansion. The main structure consisted of concrete foundations/slab and a pre engineered building made up of structural steel, IMP (insulated metal panels) and a metal roof. The IMP panels make up the finishes on both the interior and exterior, the roof area was complete with metal soffit, fascia and downspouts. Large concrete aprons were also installed around the perimeter of the building to maintain a clean flat surface for trucks to back up to the 17 new over head doors."


What were the stages of construction of this facility?

"Due to issues with the existing ground conditions in the area of 230 Main St., the original design for the foundations incorporated driven piles. Piles proved to be very costly and caused the original tender price to be over budget. M Builds, utilizing our extensive knowledge of mitigation techniques for the poor sub grade conditions, proposed the use of a preload to prepare the site for the building expansion. The first phase of the construction involved the preload which was left in place for 4 months and proved to be very effective in preparing the site for construction of the foundations. Phase 2 involved the building construction. M Builds performed excavation to the underside of the foundation with engineered backfill. Our crews and subcontractors then poured the concrete footings and walls in the next phase. As the building floor was much higher than the surrounding area M Builds then backfilled to the underside of the slab. Once the pre eng building was delivered in the spring, M Builds along with our sub trades expedited the installation to make the building weather tight and started the interior work. Mechanical and electrical rough ins were complete below grade, then the slab was poured. Mechanical and electrical began roughing in for new equipment and facilities. The building was equipped with all new high efficiency HVAC, refrigeration equipment and lighting. Electric truck and fork lift charges were installed throughout the expansion."

 How did the build process go?

"The construction was a great success from start to finish. M Builds and our subcontractors completed all procurement activities and shop drawings as early in the process as possible to avoid any supply chain issues for materials for this project. We did experience some delays with the delivery of the pre eng building due supply chain issues, but once the building arrived the project progressed well and we are looking to wrap up some enhancements to the facility at months end. Our Site Superintendent Claudio Tesolin and all of our subtrades have provided a very high quality product that the Owner and Consultants are very happy with. M Builds built strong working relationship with Dan Lacasse (Gardewine Director of Maintenance) and Scott Brown (Gardewine Terminal Manager) to ensure the project was delivered to their high standards and satisfaction. The guys from Gardewine were great to deal with, and we collaborated and communicated often to solve any issue on the project using ideas from everyone on the project team."

Were you affected by any issues such as supply chain of materials, approvals or any services needed for the project?

"As so common in the construction industry today, we did have supply chain issues which impacted the delivery of the pre eng building, but once it arrived M Builds and sub trades hit the ground running as the site was prepared awaiting delivery. With the lead time on the pre eng building we were able to secure all other long lead items and materials so we did not experience further delays."


Overall how has the project gone and when was it complete?

"The project has been a success and scheduled to be complete by the end of the month. The new perishable and ambient dock areas have been turned over to the owner for use and the facility is happy with the quality of work and the additional work space and amenities that are incorporated into the new construction."

 What is your feeling on the current construction market in Thunder Bay and area?

"The current construction market in NWO has been keeping M Builds and our valued sub-contractors in the area very busy. The Covid 19 supply chain issues have subsided, but the impacts to the increased cost of material and labour are still being realized. With the need of affordable housing, assisted living residences, improvements to existing infrastructure and other large and small scale projects in the area, we anticipate the construction market will be strong in northwestern Ontario for the foreseeable future."



Click here to view the printer friendly version.
SledNews Snowmobile News
Golfing News
North Superior Publishing
Scott Sumner