University of Toronto Faculty of Law

TTC Steels Launch Shaft

The expansion of the Faculty of Law building at the University of Toronto incorporated the addition of another storey to the existing building. The increased loading required an upgrade to the capacity of the building foundation. HCM proposed an innovative solution to install micropiles next to the caissons to accommodate the additional loading. The micropile foundation was designed by RWH Engineering Inc. (RWH), an HCM Group company.

Specialty equipment was required to install the micropiles inside the existing building, as there was only four meters of headroom in some areas. HCM used a low head room drill to install micropiles to depths of 18 meters. The micropile design required triple post-grouting to achieve the necessary bond between the grout and the soil. The soil encountered was comprised of layers of sand, silt, and clay. To confirm the design adhesion, a sacrificial load test was performed to 250% of the ULS load.

This project is an example of how HCM/RWH can offer alternative foundation solutions to meet the needs of any project, including projects with challenging site restrictions.

Client: Eastern Construction

Location: Toronto, Ontario

Spray River Bridge

Spray River Bridge

During the 2013 flooding in Southern Alberta, the Spray River undermined the foundation of a 24m long all season bridge causing the bridge to collapse.   As the bridge was located on a non-motorized pathway in Banff National Park – 10km from the nearest road – the project required a solution that took into account the remote location. 

The existing bridge was able to be reused, but required a new alignment and redesigned footings.  RWH worked in conjunction with Parks Canada to design a piling solution for the new foundation.  A major consideration was designing for future scour depths and therefore pipe micropiles were selected. The design included eight micropiles, each extending 12m deep. The equipment was trammed to the location using existing fire roads and a cable tram was used to access the far side as protection of the surrounding natural environment was a key priority on this project. 

HCM’s versatile team worked together to handle this small, yet challenging job and successfully met the client’s unique project requirements.

Client: Parks Canada

Location: Banff National Park, Alberta

Sarcee Trail

Sarcee Trail

The foundation of an existing residential apartment building in Southwest Calgary was compromised and required remedial measures to be completed. 

RWH designed a micropile underpinning system based on the initial geotechnical investigation. Together, HCM and RWH developed a testing strategy to confirm the soil bond strength and the design parameters obtained from the report. This involved installing and loading a sacrificial micropile to 250% of the design load. The test was successful and the remaining production micropiles were installed as designed.   

The challenging aspect of this project was working within the confined space beneath the building.  Initially having only a 1.2m headroom restriction, the installation areas were excavated to 2.3m below the bottom floor in a series of trenches and ventilation openings were constructed.  A low headroom? TEI rock drill was brought into the confined space in pieces and reassembled at the drilling locations.  Furthermore, the compressor for the drill had to be located outside the building.

These challenges were met with efficient and safe solutions by HCM.

Client: Madden Matthews Eng. Ltd.

Location: Calgary, Alberta

TTC Patten Building

TTC Patten Building

HC Matcon was retained to install micropile foundation for TTC Patten Building on 835 Davenport Road, Toronto. The building was originally designed for storage of paper tickets and when TTC transitioned to using tokens the increased loading caused settlement and structural issues which required strengthening of its foundations. 

The project consisted of drilling and installing 90 micropiles to a depth of 15M.  Working conditions presented an issue as drilling was restricted in a basement of an existing building where headroom was 3.5 meters high. HCM mobilized the Klemm low headroom drill rig in order to complete the project with productions to meet the strict deadlines required from TTC. 

The project was completed in a timely fashion and on budget. HC Matcon is well equipped to deal with difficult conditions presented on any project and are experts in micropile installations.

Client: Toronto Transit Commission & Buttcon LTD.

Location: Toronto, Ontario

Cobourg Railway Station

Cobourg Railway Station

On this project, HCM, in conjunction with its in-house engineering company, RWH Engineering Inc. (RWH), was able to offer the owner one source for the design, supply, and installation of a complete temporary shoring system and precision monitoring services. 

RWH produced an efficient design that conformed to AREMA railway standards and resulted in savings to the owner, in comparison to the original tendered drawings. The RWH design included a double pile and lagging system with 17.5 meter long tiebacks, required due to the soft soils. In addition, HCM installed 275 mm diameter permanent micropiles at the base of the shoring. The micropiles extended through 12 meters of soil and were founded 5 meters into bedrock to provide the required capacity. 

The general contractor benefited from working with a single source that could take responsibility for all aspects of the shoring and deep foundations work – guaranteeing quality and reducing costs.

Client: Via Rail Canada Inc.

Location: Cobourg, Ontario