The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E1
SPECIAL ADVERTISING FEATURE
NOVA SCOTIA ROAD
Bonnie Bobryk Photopgraphy
The NSRBA strategic plan will refocus the association’s direction to better serve its members, continue improving its relationship with government, promote the road
building industry as a career option, and restructure the association’s committees.
Undertaking ‘significant’ changes
Association’s vision to be recognized,
respected as definitive leader
of infrastructure for Nova Scotia
By Ken Cashin The most important change, however,
Special Features Writer has been the development of the group’s
first ever formal strategic plan, a process it
ike in the game of chess, in practi- began in late 2009.
cally every undertaking in life, from The NSRBA strategic plan will refocus
business to sports to politics, you the association’s direction to better serve
have to have a plan. You have to its members, continue improving its rela-
know what your goals are and how you’re tionship with government, promote the
going to achieve them. You’ve got to know road building industry as a career option,
where you’re going. and restructure the association’s commit-
Over the last few years the Nova Scotia tees.
Road Builders Association (NSRBA) has “The vision of the Nova Scotia Road
undertaken a number of significant chang- Builders Association is to be recognized
es. It has relocated its office and hired an and respected as the definitive leader of
administrative assistant and executive infrastructure for Nova Scotia,” says Bonnie Bobryk Photography
director. NSRBA president Brad Scott.
“Our mission is to promote best prac-
The NSRBA Board of Directors. Back Row, (from left to right): John Flemming, Yuri
The organization has also revamped its
website and taken steps to raise its profile tices focused on improving infrastructure Power, Steve MacKenzie, Trevor Chisholm, Andrew Lake. Front Row (left to right):
by promoting greater awareness of what in the province and our core purpose is to Donald Chisholm, Grant Feltmate - Executive Director; Ron Dunn - Vice President;
the association does and highlighting the be the collective voice of the road building Brad Scott - President; Carol Ingraham - Administrative Assistant, Pat Gray, Rick
significant role it plays in driving the Nova Bezanson. Missing from photo: Greg MacDonald and Ken Thomas - Immediate
Scotia economy. See CHANGES / E5 Past President.
NOVA SCOTIA ROAD BUILDERS ASSOCIATION
Dr. H. W. Doane* H. H. Latimer* C. A. Maier* R.G. Steed Aubrey Martell Ron Legere
D. F. MacIsaac* D. R. MacKay* R. K. Chappell* J. G. Flemming Tim McSorley Gary Rudolph
W. P. Bickle* W. W. Spicer* L. D. Hopkins* S. W. Weeks* Gerry Holle* Barry Hunter
G. C. Hault* L. H. Langley P. W. Ross* Dave McKenna Elmer Thomas John Flemming
D. H. Norman* H. W. Doane Jr. J. T. Douglas* Vic Lunn* Fred Benere Wally Caldwell
M. H. McManus* A. O. Parsons* F. A. Martell* John Chisholm Jack Eisener Carl Baillie
P. S. Parsons* D. W. Latimer R. E. Bayard Dan Arbing* Greg Burke Don Maillet
F. C. Hudson* J. S. Stevens* A. M. Dechman Eric Barker D. J. Campbell Paul White
J. D. Harnett* J. A Domville* R. F. Titus* Haluk Alemdar Cecil Vance Ken Thomas
For NSRBA Membership and
other information, please call 405-3497
E10 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
Road builders take up the challenge
Idea for hockey event
was launched in 2003
during play at the
annual golf tournament
By Ken Cashin
Special Features Writer
eam building is important in every
organization. It helps bring individ-
ual members together and enables
them to work with a single focus,
for everyone’s benefit.
In a large, diverse group like the
150-member strong Nova Scotia Road
Builders Association (NSRBA), which
encompasses many sectors of the econo-
my, from engineering firms and paving
contractors to energy, insurance, and tele-
communications companies, team building
is absolutely essential.
In addition to organizing annual events
for its members like the curling bonspiel in
January and golf tournament in July, the
NSRBA hosts a yearly hockey tournament Contributed
called the Challenge Cup. Challenge Cup: Paul White, left, of Nova Construction (a Past President of NSRBA) presents Pat Gray of Dexter Construc-
It takes place every January at the an- tion, current NSRBA board member and captain of the South Atlantic Cats, with the Challenge Cup.
nual general meeting. Now in its seventh
year, the three-day tournament consists of
four teams. Originally the event pitted
NSRBA members from the north of the
province against those from the south, but,
as of this year, the Challenge Cup also
includes a team from the N.S. Department
of Transportation and Infrastructure Re-
newal, as well as a mixed team.
Sponsorship for the event comes from
Atlantic Explosives Ltd., Atlantic Tractors
and Equipment Ltd., Wallace Equipment
Ltd., and Bluewave Energy.
Organizer John Flemming, an NSRBA
director, says the hockey activity is great
for team building.
“In our industry, as big as it is, with the
many types of companies that do road
building work, our individual members
don’t often get to see and interact with one
another as much as they’d like,” says Flem-
ming. “The Challenge Cup gives people an
opportunity to get together to network and
The heavy construction field is by its
very nature competitive, says Flemming,
and the hockey gives association members
an opportunity to engage in friendly com-
petition away from the real world of busi-
ness. “It’s a good excuse,” he jokes, “to
vent your frustrations on the ice instead of Contributed
in the field.” Curling Champions: Premier Darrell Dexter, left, presents Steve Carruthers and Blair Landry, Ocean Contractors Limited,
The idea for the hockey event was
launched in 2003 during play at the annual curling bonspiel champions, with their trophy. The bonspiel is held in January.
“It started as a friendly rivalry between
the north and the south. Now it’s one of
our most highly-anticipated annual events.
People really look forward to it — it has
even increased participation at our AGM.”
Flemming says the Challenge Cup has
also opened up event participation to more
people, as not everyone plays golf or curls.
“We’re very proud of our industry and
the work we do,” he says.
“Road building is highly competitive, but
our members respect one another and play
fair. We have a good group.”
“It started as a
friendly rivalry between
the north and the south.
Now it’s one of our
Golf Champions: (left to right) David Brien, Michelin; Roger Scott, Miller Tirecraft; Rob MacKinnon, Michelin and Dave
An NSRBA director Johnson, Regional Tire Distributors, were winners of the 2010 Road Builders golf tournament.
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The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E11
Bonnie Bobryk Photography
Traffic flows through the Armdale Roundabout in HRM. Today, Canada has about 200 roundabouts. France has more than 20,000 and Britain has 30,000.
Round, round we go
All around the world roundabouts are being used as traffic different cost, especially if other infra-
structure gets tied into it.
“Compared to signals, roundabouts have
control measures, Canada just coming online comparable price numbers,” says Boddy.
“The real savings are with bridges and
other infrastructure around the round-
By Melanie Furlong conflict points, or possibilities of vehicle- on Margeson Drive, are being installed in abouts. Because of the way they handle
Special Features Writer to-vehicle or vehicle-to-pedestrian conflict. HRM. More roundabouts in Antigonish, traffic, we’re able to keep our bridges
Slower operating speed in the roundabout New Glasgow, Stellarton, and Milford are narrower. There are less construction costs
number of roundabouts planned combined with exposure to risk improves planned for the coming year, with Stellar- and less long-term maintenance costs.”
for Nova Scotia in 2010 will make the overall safety of the intersection. ton expected to be operation soon. Roundabouts also mean less energy
transportation safer for all road “At a set of signals, drivers will try to get “The program is in place now and is consumption on signals and reduced idling
users, says Keith Boddy, senior through a yellow light and may have a on-going. Budgets change, but we save a cuts down on greenhouse gases.
highway design engineer for the Depart- collision. In a roundabout, you’ll hit the lot of money installing them and each and “On a very measurable study done at an
ment of Transportation and Infrastructure. centre island or the grass instead of hitting every one of them has their own business HRM intersection, it shows we can reduce
“The international evidence that round- someone in a head-on or t-bone collision.” case analysis. greenhouse gases by 300 tonnes a year.”
abouts are safer is overwhelming,” he says. Today, Canada has about 200 round- “For example, in Milford we’re saving Nova Scotia has three roundabout lega-
“It’s been proven time and again that abouts. France has more than 20,000 and millions of dollars of Nova Scotian tax- cy projects in Armdale, Port Hastings and
roundabouts are safer for all road users, Britain has 30,000. Boddy says all around payers’ money because we don’t have to Pictou as well as three new modern round-
including cyclists, pedestrians and drivers the world roundabouts are being used as install temporary infrastructure. We’re abouts in Avonport, Sydney and Windsor
to varying degrees. All road infrastructure traffic control measures and Canada is just installing permanent infrastructure and which were built over the last four years.
has its inherent risks, but roundabouts coming online. we’re removing what’s there now.” Various roundabouts are also planned by
have less exposure to risk for all users.” In Nova Scotia, six new roundabouts, Costs for a roundabout can run from $1 municipalities in Debert, Bridgewater and
Boddy says this is because there are less three on Larry Uteck Boulevard and three million to $1.5 million, but each job has a Halifax.
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E12 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
Photos by Joseph Robichaud Photography
Surface treatments are very thin, typically less than 20 mm compared to conventional hot mix asphalt, which is machine intensive and is placed in layers of up to 75
mm. Surface treatments are something the industry intends to offer long-term to municipalities and government.
By Melanie Furlong whereby layers of stone are evenly distrib-
Special Features Writer uted or embedded in emulsion which is
spread in advance on the road surface.
s municipalities across the prov- “The chip-sealing operation essentially
ince look for ways to deal with sprays the emulsion on the existing riding
costly road improvements, Micro- surface at a prescribed spread rate, then
Surfacing and Chip Sealing are applies a constant feed of12 mm clear
rising to the forefront of affordable op- stone on top. You carefully spread the
tions. Gary Rudolph, director of Aggre- stone on the emulsion and quickly end up
gates and Pavement Rehabilitation for with a riding surface of consistent texture
Dexter Construction, says these options and ride once it is rolled.”
have been around for a while, but are
getting more and more important as mu- The entire operation is relatively quick
nicipalities look for ways to extend the life and traffic is allowed to travel on the new
of existing roads and infrastructure. surface within a short timeline.
Surface treatments are very thin, typical-
A proud member of the Nova Scotia and
“These surface treatments do a couple of
things,” says Rudolph. ly less than 20 mm compared to conven- New Brunswick Road Builders Association
“They provide a new riding surface over tional hot mix asphalt, which is machine
the existing pavement, they improve safety intensive and is placed in layers of up to 75
by filling in wheel ruts as well as improve mm. Rudolph says surface treatments are
SPECIALISTS IN COMMERCIAL,
overall appearance and skid resistance. something the industry intends to offer
Surface treatments also extend the life- long-term to municipalities and govern-
cycle of asphalt pavement from ment.
approximately15 to 20 years before a total
rebuild or a conventional asphalt overlay is
“They need to have affordable construc-
tion techniques and materials which pro- CONSTRUCTION, CONTRACT BONDING,
MANUFACTURING, SEAFOOD INDUSTRY,
required.” vide safer and longer lasting pavements.”
With Micro-Surfacing, a very thin layer of As governments become more and more
5 mm minus aggregate is blended on site challenged with their capital programs and
with emulsion or specially-designed tar
and evenly spread on the road with special-
the availability of capital money, says Ru-
dolph, they’re going to be looking for in-
FLEETS AND PERSONAL INSURANCE
ized equipment. Rudolph says it improves novative ways to extend and spend the
the profile of the road, corrects surface dollars they have, to do as much as they
imperfections and protects the underlying
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pavement from oxidizing or becoming
“The whole thing is to provide options to
3845 Joseph Howe Drive, Suite 300 Halifax, NS B3L 4H9
“It’s a very thin layer of material,” says
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gregate versus conventional pavement “As an industry, we’re constantly looking
designs using asphalt cement and a broad- for ways to be innovative, to provide new Ph: (902) 454-8641 Fax: (902) 455-2267
er range of aggregate sizes.” solutions and products .
Chip-sealing also improves the ride on Through sound engineering practices,
roads, protects the existing asphalt and carefully-selected surface treatments are a
great option for our infrastructure mainte-
addresses surface deficiencies. Chip seal-
ing operations use specialized machines nance needs.”
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The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E13
All photos by Joseph Robichaud Photography
New technology eliminates human error in determining finish grade and reduces the number of surveyor checks and regrading of surfaces that may have been required
under the conventional system.
Building safer roads
created. “And basically the computer con-
verts it to a language that the machine can
read.” That information is transferred to
the motor grader which has machine con-
trol software. The software combined with
the GPS receivers on the blades provides
the grader operator the information as to
Global position systems being employed to make road bed where he is relative to the finish grade on
his screen, Dunn says.
preparation prior to paving far more efficient The technology eliminates human error
in determining finish grade and reduces the
number of surveyor checks and regrading
By Tom Peters and 150,000 tonnes of gravels. The job way construction. A new section of of surfaces that may have been required
Special Features Writer employs about 50 of Weeks’ people and twinned highway between Mount Uniacke under the conventional system.
about 50 people indirectly. and Windsor, which will also open this “It saves time in getting material to the
ova Scotia’s road builders are The contract is scheduled for comple- summer, will also incorporate these safety desired grades. We go with the province’s
building safer, more durable high- tion August 31 when traffic will be permit- features. surveyor and check and confirm that the
ways and are doing it more effi- ted to use the new section. On the technology side, global position grades are proper. It has been fairly seam-
ciently with the aid of global posi- Dunn says the additional safety features systems are being employed to make road less.”
tioning (GPS) technology, says Ron Dunn being added to the project are rumble bed preparation prior to paving far more Weeks is not the first company in the
of S.W. Weeks Construction Ltd., of New strips on the edges of the pavement which efficient. In getting gravels graded to the province with this technology but Dunn
Glasgow. The Weeks company is presently will warn motorists when they are getting required design surface, Dunn says Weeks says it is becoming more commonplace.
working on an approximately $6.5 million to close to the edge and guardrails with Construction is using machine-control With regard to highway durability, Dunn
provincial highway contract east of New energy absorbing ends. “If you run into technology that runs off a global posi- says a major component in the life of as-
Glasgow, paving on a new 7.4 kilometre them they absorb the energy of the vehicle tioning system. “Our motor grader is phalt is the ability to achieve specified
twinned section of highway. The work also (impact) without causing extensive dam- equipped with machine control and both compaction. With more modern equipment
includes signs and guardrail installation. age to the guardrail or the vehicle,” he corners of the blade levelling the gravel being used in building highways “we are
Dunn, project manager and estimator for says. These two features have been avail- have GPS receivers.” better equipped to achieve those compac-
Weeks, says materials include approxi- able in the province for the past few years The province’s required design surface is tion levels which gives the asphalt more
mately 37,000 tonnes of hot asphalt mix but are becoming more common in high- put into Weeks’ computer and a model life,” he says.
Road Builders Association
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E14 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
Joseph Robichaud Photography
Hydroseeding: Workers drive alongside the road with a man at the cannon on top of a truck. The truck has a pump of its own that allows it to spray up to 120 feet away. An
even coat is put on the ground and the mulch used is designed to hold the seed in place until it germinates.
Landscaping our roadways
Hydroseeding is the mechanical means of
seeding the area along the shoulder used instead
of liming, fertilizing and sodding an area
By Melanie Furlong gallons of water, fertilizer, mulch, lime and
Special Features Writer seeds. Along Nova Scotian highways those
seeds are usually the Nova Scotia Highway
nce the bulldozers, graders and mix which consists of seven or eight
pavers have done their work on brands of seeds including clover, tall fes-
Nova Scotia’s roads and highways, cue or Kentucky bluegrass.
someone has to look after the “That’ll do approximately 5,000 square
shoulders. yards,” says McDonell.
Elmsdale Landscaping Limited, a com- “We drive alongside the road with a man
mercial hydroseeding and mulching con- at the cannon on top of the truck. The
tractor, is often responsible for the impor- truck has a pump of its own that allows us
tant job of seeding the overturned soil. to spray up to 120 feet away. We put a nice Joseph Robichaud Photography
Collin Logan, corporate controller for even coat on the ground and the mulch we Landscaping work underway in Bedford.
Elmsdale Landscaping Ltd., says seeding use is designed to hold the seed in place
the soil not only makes the landscape more until it germinates.” this case Dexter Construction, to do each hay to make it sticky so it doesn’t blow
attractive, it protects the highway from Once they spray the seed in place, area as they finish with it,” he says. “Ninety away. It hangs on to the ground a lot bet-
wash-outs and the environment from ero- they’re finished the job. Grass appears per cent of the time, we’re on closed roads ter.” The company has four Bowie hydro-
sion. Hydroseeding is the mechanical anywhere from three to four weeks later. that are safe for us to travel on.” seeders that they use on different projects
means of seeding the area along the shoul- McDonell says hydroseeding the shoul- Hydroseeding usually starts at the end of in the Maritime provinces.
der used instead of liming, fertilizing and ders of highway 104 between New Glas- May and they can seed up until the end of They have on-going projects at the Hali-
sodding an area. gow and Truro was one of their biggest October. fax Stanfield International Airport, ditching
Paul McDonell, hydroseeder superin- recent highway projects and took about “In the fall, we put hay over the hydro- projects along new subdivisions and roads
tendent for Elmsdale Landscaping Ltd., four months. seed to keep it from eroding. We have hay across Nova Scotia, Ski Martock, and vari-
says their Bowie hydroseeders hold 3,000 “We work closely with the contractor, in blowers that will mix a tackifier with the ous others.
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E6 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
“The excavation of materials and
placement of fill is the most costly
Bonnie Bobryk Photography
and time consuming process in
S. W. Weeks Construction Ltd
Road building step-by-step process
By Ken Cashin
Special Features Writer
s members of the motoring public,
most people are quite familiar with
Nova Scotia’s highways and by-
ways. We use them every day for
practically everything we do.
What many people may not know, how-
ever, is how roads are built. Although it
may look simple, road building is a com-
plex, time consuming process. It requires
many kinds of engineering expertise during
the design and construction and usually
involves the cooperation of various trades the desired grade,” explains Ron Dunn of “The excavation of materials and place- mental regulations. If blasting is required,
people. S. W. Weeks Construction Ltd. “And, the ment of fill is the most costly and time permits must be obtained.
During the design another challenge is to placement and compaction of materials or consuming process in road construction,” In addition to the challenges of tight
obtain the necessary permits from various fill is required when land is lower than the he says. deadlines, other challenges involve Mother
government agencies, which is also time desired grade. Fill consists of either the “There are some public misconceptions Nature. Nova Scotia has many lakes, rivers,
consuming and exacting. And, Nova Sco- previously- excavated materials, or new about the road construction process. Peo- and streams, and other sensitive areas
tia’s unique geography and geology also material brought in. ple sometimes think road building takes which road builders must take great care
present many challenges for construction. “All disturbed material — either the fill much longer than it should to complete. to leave undisturbed. The province has in
Road builders must take great care not to or the native material left behind after This may be due in large part to the slow place many strict environmental regu-
disturb the province’s many bodies of excavation — must be compacted. Basical- phases of construction that occur early on lations that contractors must adhere to.
water and other sensitive environmental ly, what this means is that the land that the in the process, like clearing and excava-
areas. road will be built on must be strong tion. Many times people also question why New Technology
enough to support the road and its traffic traffic needs to be re-directed when no
Steps in the road building process without settling or shifting. After the road Dunn says one of the newest devel-
actual construction is being done at that opments in road building is the use of
There are many steps required in the has been sufficiently compacted, a gran- particular moment. There are often many
construction of a road and each step is ular subbase is placed to add additional Global Positioning System (GPS) tech-
reasons for this, including the safety of the nology. It allows road builders to model
completed according to the design that strength to the road’s structure.” workers.”
meets the needs of the planned route. The The last step is laying the finish material existing conditions and the finished prod-
first step is the clearing and grubbing of of the road’s surface, which is what the uct on computer, which provides greater
the area where the road will be built. This traffic will ultimately drive on. This layer Permits and Environmental Protection precision and control.
entails removing all trees, shrubs, roots usually consists of asphalt; however de- All land that the road will pass through “With GPS we can take information
and other organic material. pending on the needs of the road, it may be must be owned or purchased by the devel- about multiple surfaces and input that into
After this process is complete, the land made of concrete or a combination of the oper. If any excavation is required there the excavators and other road building
must be levelled to meet the design grade two products. must be verification of the utilities which machines. This allows us to be less reliant
for each section of road. Dunn says the most difficult road build- may be found in that area. If the road pas- on surveying stakes, as the machines know
“Removal of excess material or excava- ing process is probably excavation and ses over or near any body of water, precau- exactly where they are in relation to the
tion is needed when the land is higher than placement of fill. tions must be taken to satisfy environ- desired design grade and finished surface.”
By the numbers
$780,000 to local trucking contractors; structure. Tourists cannot travel to attrac-
Nova Scotian sub-contractors would get tions, goods can’t be moved, and busi-
$150,000; rental equipment like trucks nesses can’t be developed.”
and dozers would be $400,000; room and Feltmate says Canada, and Nova Scotia
board for employees, $160,000; fuel costs in particular, has a huge infrastructure
By Melanie Furlong creates. That includes an estimated 5,000 would be $1,480,000; royalties to local deficit.
Special Features Writer direct and 2,500 indirect jobs with a pay- landowners for aggregate, $160,000; and, “Insufficient spending has been com-
roll estimated at $375 million. Feltmate construction material purchases of pipe, mitted to this vital area for several years.
Road building has a widespread impact says the average wage and benefits are concrete, hay and Geotextiles, would add The recent infrastructure stimulus spend-
on Nova Scotia’s economy, says Grant high. up to $630,000.” ing, to help move our economy out of the
Feltmate, president of the Nova Scotia Spin-offs from the economic impact When road building construction of recession, has been a help, but it is no
Road Builders Association. are less obvious. bridges, marine and sewer water mains, where near sufficient relative to the
“Some effects of the industry are more For example,” he says, “if you had a or roads is complete, citizens are left with needs that have been accumulated over
obvious than others,” he says. typical $8 million grading contract, $1.7 extremely valuable assets. many years. It is crucial that all levels of
Most visible are the thousands of well- million of that would go out in wages, “An economy cannot be developed government increase their spending
paying jobs the road building industry which equals 80,000 man-hours of labour; without proper road building infra- directed at infrastructure.”
Engineering and Environmental
Design and Consul ng Services
tel: (902) 421-7241 fax: (902) 423-3938
email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.cbcl.ca
The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E7
Today’s machines ‘light years’ ahead
of past road building equipment
John Deere 764
High Speed Dozer
billed as ‘the
world’s first high
By Ken Cashin
Special Features Writer
oad building is perhaps one of
man’s earliest forms of construc-
tion. Paths leading to water and
food sources have been traced
back as far as 4,000 B.C. in the form of
paved stones and later as logs and bricks.
From the time of the first earth-moving
machines of the modern era, like the Otis
Shovel of the 19th century, and long before
that with the use of horse-drawn plows,
the road building process has involved
planning, clearing, levelling, laying materi-
als, and maintenance.
While the theory of road building hasn’t
changed much, the machinery to do it with
“The machines of today are light years
ahead of where they were even a few dec-
ades ago,” says Yuri Power of Wallace
Equipment Ltd. “The construction indus-
try’s earth-moving requirements have great-
ly evolved. We’re seeing an increased de-
mand for faster and more productive
Power says newly-designed ADTs, craw-
ler dozers, excavators and various other
road building machines are more powerful,
efficient, and versatile than ever. The new-
er equipment, he points out, can save time
and money and help to build better roads.
One of the most state-of-the-art new
machines is the John Deere 764 High
Speed Dozer. Billed as “the world’s first
high speed dozer,” the 764 HSD offers
outstanding productivity and comfort
while increasing uptime and reducing daily
The 764 HSD finishes grades and dozes Contributed
up to twice as fast as a traditional crawler.
Its articulated-frame steering and four- The 764 HSD finishes grades and dozes up to twice as fast as a traditional crawler. Its articulated-frame steering and four-
track oscillating undercarriage make the track oscillating undercarriage make the 764 HSD highly manoeuvrable, reducing the need to transport it on trailer for short
764 HSD highly manoeuvrable, reducing distances.
the need to transport it on trailer for short
Another key feature is its long-life rub- isolates the operator from powertrain
ber tracks, which enable it to traverse hard noise and vibration — at just 72 dBa, it’s
surfaces like concrete without damage. refreshingly quiet.
“The 764 HSD’s wide-open ground-level
Described as a one-of-a-kind machine,
the 764 HSD can finish grade within 2⁄10th of access to dipsticks, see-through fluid reser- With over 40 years of experience and
voirs, and sight gauges make quick work of
25mm and grade at 8MPH with TopCon 3D
MC2. It boasts a top speed of 16 MPH, the daily routine,” says Braswell. “Coolers a large number of people, Municipal
allowing quicker access to the next task. are housed in a unique box configuration
The 764 HSD is standard equipped with that’s isolated from engine heat, for in-
creased efficiency, durability, and easier
Group is the largest civil contractor
medium-duty Category 4 drawbar and
flow-adjustable rear hydraulics, making it a core clean-out.”
He says the high speed dozer performs
in Atlantic Canada. We maintain our
highly versatile taskmaster that works well
with a wide variety of pull-type attach-
ments such as land levellers, disks, and
in many different applications and envi-
ronments. leadership position through our belief
“The benefits of the 764 HSD are com-
“The 764 HSD is being used throughout
North America — from Ft. McMurray, it’s not just about moving the most earth
or building the longest bridge. It’s about
pletely over the top,” says Doug Braswell, Alberta to New Mexico,” he says. “They’re
product consultant with John Deere. increasing productivity and saving money
for our customers.”
“There’s nothing like it.”
Highly fuel-efficient, its Tier 3-certified building trust. Delivering quality work.
John Deere PowerTech™ 6.8-L engine
provides power without compromise in all “The construction Meeting commitments. And having the
conditions, delivering up to 210 hp at a low
1,800 rpm. industry’s resources to be the best in our business.
In addition to its performance, the 764
HSD offers greater comfort for the oper- earth-moving
ator, improved operator and bystander
safety, and easier maintenance. requirements have
“Its wide expanse of front glass, large
side and rear windows, and narrow, low- greatly evolved.”
profile forward console allow virtually
unrestricted all-around visibility,” says Yuri Power
The Cab-forward design, he points out, Wallace Equipment Ltd.
Info@wilsonequip.ns.ca (902) 895-1611
is proud to be a member
66 Atlantic Central Drive, PO Box 340, Truro N.S. B2N 5C5 and a supporter of
The Nova Scotia Road
MUNICIPAL READY-MIX LTD. Builders Association
P.O. BOX 237, SYDNEY N.S.
Dexter Construction Company Limited
Concrete – Asphalt – Gravel – Excavation
PO Box 48100, Bedford, Nova Scotia, Canada B4A 3Z2
Phone 564-4541 Fax 562-6057 Tel: 902-835-3381 Fax: 902-835-7300 www.municipalgroup.ca
Dexter Construction Company Limited
Visit Our Web Site at: http://www.mrm.ca A Member of the Municipal Group of Companies.
E8 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
More than just motor vehicles
Due to growing
demand, more and
more tenders these
days are calling for
the provision of
By Ken Cashin
Special Features writer
hen you hear the term road
building in Nova Scotia, the
first thing you think about is
usually cars and trucks, the
main types of vehicles that utilize our
roads. However, the highways, byways and
streets in Nova Scotia are traveled by more
than just motor vehicles. Due to growing
demand, more and more tenders these
days are calling for the provision of bicycle
lanes. While the number of existing on-
street bikeways may be few at present, the
prospects for future development are en-
While the province is still in the early
days of policy planning, HRM approved an
Active Transportation Plan in 2006 that
lays out an extensive network of connec-
tions including bike lanes.
HRM’s David McCusker, manager, Re-
gional Transportation, says whenever the
municipality undertakes major street work
on a road identified as part of the bike
route network, it strives to include bike
lanes in the street design.
In some cases, he says, it’s simply not
possible to add bike lanes, in which case
other options are taken, such as widening
curb lanes, signing a route, or other mea-
sures to improve biking.
“There’s a consensus of opinion by
health care professionals, urban planners
and other professions that regions like
HRM need an action plan to accommodate
a more active lifestyle by a larger segment
of the population in an environmentally-
and financially-sustainable manner,” says
McCusker. “Developing an Active Trans-
portation Plan is one of the building blocks
being undertaken by HRM to meet these
needs,” he says.
The purpose of the Active Transporta-
tion Plan is to build upon the existing
system of on and off road pedestrian, trail
and cycling facilities, link them together in
an integrated network that also supports
transit use, and design existing programs
to promote, educate and encourage more
people of all ages to choose active trans-
portation modes more often.
“We’re striving to develop a region-wide,
visible and connected network of on- and
off-road facilities that are convenient,
accommodate the needs of existing and
future users, and promote an increase in
non-motor vehicle travel, particularly for
short distances,” he says.
“This network will be supported by Bonnie Bobryk Photography
various programs, policies, and strategies
that will help and encourage active trans- While the number of existing on-street bikeways may be few at present, the prospects for future development are encour-
portation year round and improve quality aging. The Halifax Regional Municipality approved an Active Transportation Plan in 2006 that lays out an extensive network
of life for both residents and visitors to the of connections including bike lanes.
region. It will help position HRM as one of
the most desirable municipalities in which challenging,” says McCusker. “We’ve adopted a 25-year plan that will a recent study), the city is adding many
to live, work and visit in North America.” “In very few cases, it’s possible to widen see an extensive network of bike routes off-road trails that accommodate biking for
the street just enough to add bike lanes, develop. Rather than building that network transportation and not just recreation. The
The challenges such as the case with Main Street in Dart- route by route, we find it much more eco- Chain of Lakes Trail being built this year is
The Active Transportation Plan aims to mouth where widening of the existing nomically efficient to build it opportunis- a good example.
have all new collector and arterial streets street was done. In some cases the existing tically, which means we will build sections The key issues for drivers and cyclists,
constructed in HRM include a bike lane. street width is not fully utilized and a bike of a route at the same time as a street says McCusker, will be mutual respect for
For new streets, the challenge will be lane can be added without interfering with rehabilitation project or an adjacent devel-
primarily the additional cost for the extra and awareness of one another, as well as
existing uses, as was the case with adding opment project.“
street width to accommodate the bike lane. bike lanes to South Park Street. In the short term, he says, the bike net- knowledge of the rules of the road.
This will be particularly noticeable on In most cases, however, bike lanes can work may look disjointed, but, overtime, “A key safety message for cyclists is to
overpasses and underpasses where extra only be added if an existing traffic lane or the pieces will begin to connect and a become a part of the traffic flow and stay
width can be very expensive. parking lane is reallocated for bikes.” network will result. there,” says McCusker, who is a cyclist
Redesigning an existing street can be While the Active Transportation Plan HRM currently has 70 km of bike lanes. himself.
equally difficult. “No two streets are the looks promising and is perhaps long over- While it has less on-street bike lane kms “Switching from street to sidewalk and
same, but adding a bike lane to an existing due, McCusker points out that change will per road way lane kms than several other back again just to get around traffic is not
street in an urban area is normally very not come overnight. Canadian cities (it ranked 18th out of 23 in safe and not respectful.”
Proud member of the Nova Scotia WILL-KARE PAVING
& CONTRACTING LTD.
Road Builders Association
113 Elmsdale Road,
Serving Central Nova Scotia, Canada Since 1974
Elmsdale, NS B2S 1K7
Phone: (902) 883-2291 Your Paving Specialists serving
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The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E9
Road building machines getting cleaner
By Melanie Furlong
Special Features Writer
he latest technology and
emission controls are
making road building
machines so clean that air
going into the engines will soon
be dirtier than the exhaust.
Gordon Munro, product sup-
port manager for Wallace Equip-
ment, the John Deere Construc-
tion and Forestry dealer for the
Maritimes, says there have been
huge changes to emission con-
trols of diesel engines and how
much nitrogen oxide and partic-
ulate matter, or soot, they put out.
“All the technology is changing
for every machine that’s going to
be sold in North America within
the next five years,” says Munro.
“John Deere is a market leader in
Off-Highway Emissions Solutions,
and our company is investing
heavily in training and tooling to
support the new engines being
agencies like the U.S. Environ-
mental Protection Agency (EPA) loaders, came later, the pace of from five to 15 per cent more.
and Environment Canada (EC)
focus on four types of engine
emissions: carbon monoxide,
cleanup and rate of improvement
have been more aggressive for
non-road equipment than for
That’s quite expensive to get this
new technology. However, we
have to do it to meet the new
NOVA SCOTIA ROAD
hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides,
and particulate matter. As more
focus is placed on health and
“I think we’ve all been behind
trucks that are blowing out huge
Munro says these machines
will be costlier and require more
environmental issues, govern- amounts of black smoke,” says maintenance, but that one engine Membership List 2010
mental agencies throughout the Munro. “That’s going to be a thing from 1995 puts out more pollu-
3091592 Nova Scotia Limited Leica Geosystems Ltd.
world are enacting more stringent of the past. In four to five years, tion than 20 engines will in 2015. A. C. L. Construction Limited Liebherr Canada
laws to reduce these emissions. you’re not going to see that any- “After 2015, the standards will Aberdeen Paving Limited Lockhart Truck Center
Because so many diesel en- more.” change again and the amount of Aggregate Equipment (Atlantic) Ltd. Mac Williams Engineering Limited
gines are used in trucks, the EPA The improved engines will have fuel used will be reduced,” he Alfred J. Bell & Grant Limited Maccaferri Canada Ltd.
and its counterparts in Canada, exhaust filters that go through says. “Automobiles have done the Allnorth Consultants Ltd Mackays Truck & Trailer Ltd.
Europe and Japan first focused cleaning cycles every 1,000 hours. same thing so we don’t get smog Allstar Rebar (Nova Scotia) Ltd. Maritime Fence Ltd.
Allterrain Contracting Inc. Maritime Testing (1985) Ltd.
on setting emissions regulations Those filters will have to be re- and dirt in the atmosphere and ALPA Equipment Company Ltd. Martin Marietta Materials Canada Ltd.
for the on-road market. While the moved and replaced every 4,000 this technology will change our Alva Construction Limited McAsphalt Industries Ltd.
worldwide regulation of non-road to 6,000 hours. lives. It will improve the air we AMEC Earth & Environmental Ltd. McLennan Sales Division of EMCO Ltd.
diesel equipment, such as bull- “The cost of the machinery is breathe for our children and Archibald Drilling & Blasting (1986) Limited McNally Construction Inc.
dozers, excavators, backhoes and probably going to be anywhere children’s children.” Atlantic Road Construction & Paving Ltd Miller Tire Services
ARMTEC Limited Modern Enterprises Ltd.
Arrow Construction Products Ltd. Municipal Ready-Mix Ltd.
Good corporate citizens
Atlantic Explosives Ltd. Norquip Supply Ltd
Atlantic Industries Limited Northeast Equipment Ltd
Atlantic Tractors & Equipment Ltd. Northern Contracting Limited
Axis Mobility Limited Nova Construction Company Ltd.
B. Spicer Construction Ltd. Nova Enterprises Limited
Barrett Enterprises Limited Nova International Ltd.
By Tom Peters Basin Contracting Limited Ocean Contractors Ltd.
Special Features Writer Bird-Stairs Ocean Paving Limited
Black & McDonald Ltd. On-Grade Inc. Survey
Protecting the province’s envi- Bluewave Energy & Machine Control Systems
ronment is an ongoing concern Bourque Security Services NS Ormac Industrial Supply Inc.
and priority for the Nova Scotia Brenntag Canada Inc. OSCO Concrete
Britney Conveyor Ltd. P. Clarke & Co. Inc.
Road Builders Association. Canadian Salt Company Ltd. Parts for Trucks
The industry works with gov- Capital Cad Supplies Ltd. R. S. T. Industries Ltd.
ernment and other industry stake- Casey Concrete Ltd. Reinforced Earth Company Ltd.
holders, following policies and Castonguay Reliant Trafﬁc Control
procedures to ensure the safety CBCL Limited Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (Canada) Ltd.
of natural habitat and other as- Chapman Bros. Construction Ltd. Roadtec Inc.
Classic Freight Systems Ltd. Rockico Truck & Trailer Sales Ltd.
pects of the environment , says Conestoga-Rovers & Associates Ltd. Roto-Mill Inc.
Andrew Lake of Truro, an associ- Conrad Bros. Limited S. W. Weeks Construction Ltd.
ation director. Consbec Inc. Sackville Trenching Ltd.
Lake, project manager at Will- Costin Paving & Contracting Limited Safety First - SFC Ltd
Kare Paving and Contracting Ltd. Craig Manufacturing Limited Sancton Equipment Inc.
and responsible for environ- Creighton Rock Drill Ltd. Seaboard/Harmac Transportation Group
Cubex Limited Shaw Group Limited
mental issues for the association, Contributed Cumberland Paving & Contracting Ltd. SMS Equipment Inc.
says there is less tolerance from a The road-building industry works with government and other indus- D. W. Matheson & Sons Contracting Ltd. Sojourn Signs
very knowledgeable public on try stakeholders following policies and procedures to ensure the Dexter Construction Company Ltd Soleno Inc.
matters relating to the environ- Downeast Communications Source Atlantic
safety of natural habitat and other aspects of the environment. Dyno Nobel Limited South Shore Ready-Mix
ment and therefore the industry
Earthmover Atlantic Ltd. Stanhope Simpson Insurance Ltd.
must be more vigilant. East Coast International Trucks Inc. Stantec Consulting Ltd.
“You try to be good corporate development only if there was a the environment. Eastern Fence Erectors Steele Ford Lincoln
citizens and put infrastructure in compensation package in place, Lake says the Departments of Elmsdale Landscaping Limited Strescon Ltd.
place to try and manage the envi- Nunn says. Environment and Transportation, England Paving & Contracting Ltd. Strictly Sales & Service Inc.
ronment,” he says. “If given permission to alter a through Dalhousie University Fairley and Stevens Ford Lincoln Strongco Equipment Limited
One major concern of the in- wetland then they (industry) Center for Water Resources Stud- Fraser & Hoyt Insurance Ltd. The Cat Rental Store/Hewitt Rentals
Gary Parker Excavating Ltd. Trans East Trailers Ltd.
dustry, for example, is the protec- would have to compensate by ies, puts on sedimentation and Gateway Materials Ltd. Trout River Industries
tion of wetlands which are often creating new wetland elsewhere erosion control classes annually GE Canada Equipment Financing GP Turf Masters Landscaping Ltd.
home to birds and other wildlife or adding land to a wetland some- to educate people in the field on GEMTEC Limited United Rentals of Canada Inc.
plus act in some cases, as natural where. It might even be a draft proper techniques to controls GEOCON Atlantic Ltd. Universal Truck & Trailer
filtration systems. proposal for financial compensa- these two things. Further, the Gerald Battist Trucking Ltd. Urquhart-MacDonald & Associates
The province has put forth a tion to a wetland development department has a water course Gillis Truckways Inc. (Trailer Sales) V. J. Rice Concrete Ltd.
Grant Thornton Wade Atlantic
proposal to create a new wet- group.” The government spokes- alteration program which certi- Graymont Eastern Canada WAJAX Industries Limited
lands policy and the road builders man says the proposed policy is fies contractors on the proper Heritage Gas Limited Wallace Equipment Ltd.
have been tracking that process. presently in the draft stage and methods of installing culverts or Hertz Equipment Rental Weightronic Canada Inc.
“The government’s commit- road builders and contractors small structures on stream cross- Higgins Construction Wilcraft Concrete Services
ment was to create a new wet- have been involved in the consul- ings. Holcim (Canada) Inc. Will-Kare Paving & Contracting Ltd.
Howard E. Little Excavating Limited Wilson Equipment Ltd.
lands policy and it is based on the tation process. Lake says it all goes back to HSBC Bank of Canada Wolseley Engineered Pipe Group
concept of no net loss of wet- Lake says industry “always get awareness of wetlands and the Imperial Oil Ltd. Wolseley Waterworks
lands,” said Bruce Nunn, spokes- painted with the brush of the environment in general whether Industrial Cold Milling
man for the provincial depart- worst guy in the industry so there association members are doing Inspec-Sol Inc.
ment of environment. It is a com- is a lot of pressure on companies work on highway projects or Irving Oil Commercial GP
plex problem to develop a policy to keep up with the changes and private contracts. J. R. Eisener Contracting Ltd.
K & M Inspection Consultants Ltd.
whereby certain ecologically challenges” they face on a daily “The rules apply to everybody K&D Pratt Group Inc.
sensitive wetlands would be off basis. In that light, the association so you have to be aware so you L. S. W. Wear Parts Limited
limits to any change while other is proactive in distributing in- don’t get yourself into any diffi- Lafarge Canada Inc.
wetlands could be affected by formation to members related to culty,” he says.
high quality, solid security
free & repairs
Chain Link - 4 Colours Coloured Privacy Slats
Swimming Pool Fence Factory Partitions
Baseball Backstops Bollards
Tennis Courts Automatic Gate Openers
Custom Wood Products Rental Fence
Guard Rail Gabion Rock Baskets
468-2455 www.easternfence.ca Asphalt Sealants
47 Troop Avenue • Burnside Industrial Park • Dartmouth • NS • B3B 2A7 Performance Graded Toll Free: 1.800.268.4238
Toll Free: 1-800-563-2455 • Fax: 468-3773 Asphalt Cements Central: 416.281.8181 Quebec: 514.645.1691
Atlantic: 902.468.3733 Western: 403.279.7229
Specialty and Custom
residential & commercial Blended Asphalts email@example.com
E2 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
Photos by Bonnie Bobryk Photography
At any given time through peak construction months on Nova Scotia’s highways there are hundreds of workers involved in the building or upgrading of the province’s
highway infrastructure. In 2008 the provincial government introduced a law that called for double speed fines in a temporary work zone.
Slow down through construction zones
Workers’ safety and that of motoring public is paramount pass certified government courses in order
to work in those jobs.
The requirements for these position are
stringent, says Davis. They are adminis-
By Tom Peters “Being aware of and reducing your Work’ signs and the ‘Construction Ends’ tered by the provincial department and are
Special Features Writer speed in a construction zone will increase signs. Between these signs a fine equiv-
standard requirements across the province.
reaction time and create a safer environ- alent to double the regular applicable
Davis says overall impact of the stronger
t any given time through peak ment for workers and motorists. It could penalties could be given.
construction months on Nova also be the difference between a near miss A new sign, ‘Speed Fines Double in Work direction toward worker safety has been a
Scotia’s highways there are hun- and a fatality,” he says. Areas’ was created to warn motorists in major benefit.
dreds of workers involved in the In recent years both government and advance of the work area of the doubled There is a greater willingness on the part
building or upgrading of the province’s industry have worked co-operatively to fines, Davis says. of the department to entertain speed zone
highway infrastructure. increase safety for all. “These laws were passed to help protect reduction and there is a noticeable differ-
Their safety and that of the motoring “In Nova Scotia the construction indus- the safety of the workers and the motoring ence in enforcement of these new regu-
public is paramount. try is highly regulated and boasts some of public. Also, speed limits are often reduced lations by police agencies, he adds.
“Conditions in a construction zone can the country’s most stringent regulations on Nova Scotia’s busiest and fastest high- In 2007 the Department of Transporta-
change in an instant. Work zones are con- and programs for safety and traffic con- ways to further increase the level of safety
tion released a new traffic manual and
gested and distracting and a driver’s atten- trol,” says Davis. in the work area,” he adds.
tion, speed and reaction time are key fac- In 2008 the provincial government in- In addition to the speed fine changes, Davis says there is co-operation between
tors in safely manoeuvring a work site,” troduced a law that called for double speed the Department of Transportation and the province and industry to ensure this
says Aaron Davis, general manager of fines in a temporary work zone. The tem- Infrastructure Renewal stipulates that manual meets the needs and requirements
Eastern Traffic Services, a division of Mu- porary work area is designated as the workers carrying out jobs in the aspect of of those affected by it and changes to the
nicipal Contracting, Bedford. portion of roadway between the ‘Road traffic safety control must undergo and manual are made when warranted.
John Flemming, centre, president of Ocean Contractors Ltd. of Halifax, was
presented with the Canadian Construction Association’s Roadbuilders
Award of Recognition for outstanding service and contribution to the road
building and heavy construction sector.
Flemming CAA winner
By Tom Peters senior estimator and project manager.
Special Features Writer In 2008, he assumed the presidency of
Ocean Contractors while retaining
Receiving the Canadian Construction responsibility for the estimating and
Association’s Roadbuilders Award of project management divisions.
Recognition is not only a “great person- Within the industry, he has also been
Contributed al achievement,” it is also recognition of a leader and extremely active member
the company, says John Flemming, of the road building community at both
F-shape barriers have three primary uses on provincial highways, including provid- president of Ocean Contractors Ltd. of the national and local levels. In 2004, he
ing workplace protection by preventing errant vehicle entry into the worksite. Halifax. Flemming was presented with became president of the Nova Scotia
the award in March. It is given for out- Road Builders Association; in 2005 he
Setting the new standard for standing service and contribution to the
road building and heavy construction
sector. Those nominated are judged on
their contribution to business, support
joined the board of directors of the
Canadian Construction Association and
is the current chair of the association’s
finance committee. In 2006, he joined
NSTIR workplace control of association activities and local com-
Flemming says the award also high-
the board of directors of the Construc-
tion Association of Nova Scotia and
became a member of its executive com-
lights the fact, “we are running a suc- mittee in 2009. He is also a past director
Contributed between them, and must be securely fas-
cessful outfit here and success breeds of the Urban Design Institute of Nova
tened together in accordance with the
NCHRP 350 Test level 3 design provisions. success, so it means quite a bit.” Scotia.
A safety barrier may seem like a pretty
F-shape barriers are new to Nova Scotia. Flemming has a Civil Engineering Flemming’s enthusiasm, knowledge
simple thing. That is until it’s all that stands
They didn’t exist anywhere within the degree from Dalhousie University and and willingness to give back to his com-
between you and a vehicle travelling at 80
province before 2009. This “F-shape” is a after graduation in 1992, moved to the munity have made him a favourite with
kilometres per hour. In 2009 the Minister of
new generation of the safety shape that is Pacific coast to work as an estimator volunteer organizations.
Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal
intended to further limit vehicle damage for two prominent construction firms: He currently serves on the board of
‘published’ the minimum standards for
upon impact. The lower sloped face redi- JJM Construction and Concord Pacific. the Holiday on the Harbour Charity Ball
traffic control at temporary workplaces on
rects vehicles under low-impact condi- He returned to Nova Scotia in 1998 and the Nova Scotia Construction Curl-
or near the roads within the province.
tions. During moderate to severe impacts, and joined the family business as its ing Association.
At that time it was determined that the
acceptable standard for portable anti- some energy is dissipated when the vehicle
intrusion barriers in Nova Scotia would be is lifted off the pavement.
the Portland Cement Concrete F-shape The F-Shape reduces this lift, which
barrier meeting NCHRP 350 Test Level 3 promotes better vehicle stability while
standards (crash test certified). These maintaining vehicle redirection. In crash
pre-approved F-shape barriers must be tests, the F-Shape has proven to be more
constructed and installed copying a design successful in preventing rollover of smaller
certified as meeting NCHRP 350 Test level vehicles. The F-Shape has been found to be
3, or be tested to that standard. more effective overall than the Jersey
F-shape barriers have three primary uses Shape barrier. The barriers main purpose is • Twice the speed
on our provincial highways, including to contain and redirect the vehicle, and not
providing workplace protection by pre- allow the vehicle to under-ride, nor over- • Twice the accuracy
venting errant vehicle entry into the work- ride (flip) the barrier installation.
site; to provide protection to errant drivers These concrete F-shape barriers will Automated High Speed Dozer System
by redirecting them from a hazard; as well protect construction workers by creating a
as for separating two-way traffic. A proper Find out more about it. (902) 252-3390 See for yourself
barrier installation mustn’t have any gaps See STANDARD / E5
The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E3
On the job
The industry can
expect it will need to
replace one in five of
its current workforce
within five years
By Melanie Furlong
Special Features Writer
he labour outlook for the road
building industry in Nova Scotia is
both promising and challenging,
says Grant Feltmate, executive
president of the Nova Scotia Road Builders
Association. Due to the demographics
associated with this industry there will be
a significant number of quality job opportu-
nities available soon,” says Feltmate.
“The challenge exists with the same
outlook that faces many Nova Scotian
industries going forward. There is project-
ed to be a substantial shortage of available
labour relative to positions available.”
A recent study completed in cooperation
between the provincial Department of
Labour and Workforce Development and
Bonnie Bobryk Photography
the Nova Scotia Road Builders Association,
entitled ‘Understanding the Workforce
Development Needs of Nova Scotia’s Road
Building Industry,’ produced a detailed
examination of the challenges ahead.
“We found that given the retirement
outlook and the current rate of industry
leavers, the industry can expect it will need
to replace one in five of its current work-
force within five years,” says Feltmate.
One of the objectives of the industry, in
successfully competing for the available
labour pool in the future, is to get the
message out that working in the road-
building industry is a career and not a job
of last resort.
Many of those working in our industry
start at a young age and work their way up
to very good positions over time,” he says.
Bonnie Bobryk Photography
“Wages throughout the industry are attrac-
tive. The industry is unique and many
people stay in it for a very long time.”
Road building work tends to be labelled
as seasonal. In fact, says Feltmate, this is
Although there are a limited number of
months in the year, due to weather, when
road building can take place and, in partic-
ular, the paving component, the industry
takes advantage of all available hours
during the “open” months to get their work year and thus have careers in road build- enable those completing the training, antic- “Road building careers have changed
completed, says Feltmate. “The result is ing, not just a short-term job.” ipated to have a co-op nature to it, to have over the years with technology, similar to
the long hours worked during these The labour study highlighted a few areas the competencies and experience neces- other fields. Modern, large equipment
months easily equal a full-time job in more upon which the industry must concentrate sary to make them excellent candidates for operation often has a significant amount of
typical employment circumstances. A large as it goes forward. One is the need for employment within the industry. Training computerization involved and this has
percentage of employees return, year after training specific to the industry. This will courses are already in place. made it much more dynamic.”
E4 Saturday, July 17, 2010 The Chronicle Herald
Bonnie Bobryk Photography
A look inside the NSRBA What is the NSRBA?
• Founded in 1947, NSRBA repre-
sents contractors working in Nova
Scotia who are engaged in road,
bridge, heavy civil, marine, sewer
Founded in 1947, the association and its members play an and water main construction. The
interests of suppliers to the industry
are met through associate member-
integral part in building the province ship.
• NSRBA is the only organization
representing the road-building sector
By Ken Cashin in N.S.
Special Features Writer • Our 150 member companies
directly and indirectly employ ap-
proximately 7,500 individuals annual-
here’s no denying it, when it comes
to infrastructure, you can’t get any ly.
more basic than a community’s • Our work impacts significantly
roads and bridges. The very founda- on the service and supply industry.
tion of our transportation system, they •We are distinct from the con-
impact everything we do, from where we struction industry; we have unique
go, to how we get food on the table — working conditions and needs.
they’re absolutely essential.
What people may not be as fully aware Industry realties
of, however, is the significant impact road • Our sector is highly competitive.
building has on our local economy. One of • The industry is seasonal. Early
the province’s largest employers, repre- tender calls are critical to timely
senting a wide cross section of professions tender completion.
and trades, the sector employs more than • Safety is a top priority for the
7,500 people annually, with an estimated industry.
payroll of $375 million. • Employees are highly valued.
Represented by the Nova Scotia Road • They expect, wish and are often
Builders Association (NSRBA), the indus- required to work long hours.
try is made up of 150 member companies • They are often away from home
engaged in road, bridge, heavy civil, ma- for extended periods.
rine, and sewer and water main construc- • They originate from both rural
tion. Founded in 1947, the association and and urban communities; from every
its members play an integral part in build- county, town and village in the prov-
ing the province, its roads, and its crucial ince.
infrastructure components. • Their payroll and benefits sub-
NSRBA membership encompasses many stantially exceed minimum stan-
sectors of the economy, from engineering dards.
firms and paving contractors to energy,
insurance, and telecommunications com- Spin-offs of road building
panies. People employed in road building • Approximately 7,500 persons,
range from engineers and architects to Joseph Robichaud Photography directly and indirectly earning an
surveyors, project managers, heavy equip- estimated $375 million in wages, are
ment operators and safety managers, to Road building has a long and storied history in Nova Scotia, going back more than
a century and today the industry remains strong and healthy and is one of prov- employed annually by the sector;
name just a few. and these numbers will grow as
“Our industry represents a significant ince’s most modern and progressive sectors. funding increases.
economic driver,” says NSRBA president • Economic benefits accrue to
Brad Scott. communities and families across
Industry Capacity, Needs and essary spending over each of the next 10
“Spending on infrastructure generates a years is in excess of $400 million. Normal- N.S.
huge amount of direct and indirect em- Challenges
ized capital budgets are significantly less • Goods and services required by
ployment. The investment provides long- The ongoing challenge facing the indus- than this level.” contractors are purchased locally
term benefits to Nova Scotia by enhancing try, says Scott, is to secure from govern- The province has committed to establish wherever possible, assisting small
the transportation of people and goods. It ment a sustainable, long-term funding a rolling five year capital plan this year, businesses province wide; a typical
also enhances Nova Scotia’s ability to strategy for the province’s roads. which Scott says is also a step in the right paving job brings increased revenues
attract tourists and corporate trading part- He points out that while present funding direction. to the local market.
ners.” levels have increased in recent years, they “We’re supportive of this initiative and • Improves sustainability of Nova
Road building has a long and storied remain insufficient to halt the deterioration hopeful that it will facilitate improved Scotia’s rural communities and busi-
history in Nova Scotia, going back more of existing infrastructure and meet new capacity utilization in future years. Stable nesses.
than a century and today the industry highway needs. and sufficient funding is essential.”
remains strong and healthy and is one of For the construction season last year,
province’s most modern and progressive the Nova Scotia Department of Trans-
sectors. The NSRBA works with govern- portation and Infrastructure Renewal
ment to standardize road building pro- (NSTIR) saw its largest ever capital pro-
cesses and develop environmental and gram of $325 million. The road-building
safety regulations. The association also industry produced one million tonnes of
partners with other local industry associ- asphalt and replaced 17 bridges. The work
ations and educational institutions to de- included paving 150 km of 100 series high-
velop training programs.
And, every June the NSRBA is part of a
ways and 500 kms of trunks, routes and
Proud supporter of the
transportation department campaign ad-
vising highway motorists to slow down
For 2010, NSTIR has projected a capital
budget of $310 million. This level of spend- NOVA SCOTIA ROAD BUILDERS ASSOCIATION
near construction. “One of our overarching ing is higher than in past years due to fed-
objectives is to ensure that our industry eral infrastructure funding. Scott says that
takes a highly professional approach that while this level of funding is encouraging, SERVICES PRODUCTS
results in the best quality highways pos- it still falls short of what’s needed even to • Superior Customer Service • Shell Branded Lubricants
sible for Nova Scotians,” says Scott. repair our roads and bridges, let alone to • Extensive Delivery Network • Diesel
“The association also provides a single upgrade them for future needs. • Cardlock • Gasoline
forum for members to discuss important “Nova Scotia has an accumulating infra- • Marine Gas Oil
• Petroleum Delivery Specialists
industry issues and communicate their structure deficit. The province has 14,000
positions on these issues to key stakehold- km of paved roads which last an average of • Account Management • Heating Oil
ers.” Scott says road building has an excit- 20 years. We would have to repave 700 km • Flexibility and Customization 1-888-690-2244
ing future in Nova Scotia, with a projected each year just to maintain the existing road
increase in employment and more work system.
expected in the public sector resulting from “Our province also has 4,100 bridges,
infrastructure renewal programs announced many of which are above the national Delivering More. For You. www.BluewaveEnergy.ca
by federal and provincial governments. average in age. NSTIR estimates that nec-
The Chronicle Herald Saturday, July 17, 2010 E5
Road builders giving back Standard
continued from / E2
high level of containment,
and by restraining stray
Building a vehicles from entering a
work zone. F-shape con-
strong crete barriers allow con-
struction sites to operate
safely in close proximity to
community busy roadways. Precast
concrete barriers are useful
means more for redirecting vehicles into
new traffic patterns during
different phases of con-
than just struction. Whether it’s a
temporary or permanent
construction barrier installation, F Shape
traffic barriers reduce the
risk of head-on collisions
from out-of-control vehicles
By Tom Peters crossing over the median.
Special Features Writer The weight of barriers and
the interlocking design
uilding a strong communi- provide sufficient inertia to
ty means more than just redirect an impacting vehi-
construction for the Nova cle without requiring at-
Scotia Road Builders tachment to the highway.
Association. It also means helping F-shape barriers also re-
people. duce the risk of erratic
The association membership vehicles deflecting back
works to support local charities Bonnie Bobryk Photography into the traffic stream after
and two in particular are the Cheque presentation: Guy Kendziora (left) of McAsphalt Industries Ltd. in Dartmouth; Brad Scott, a barrier collision.
Sackville Bedford Developmental president of the NSRBA; Anna Weagle, program director for the Sackville-Bedford Developmental Shaw Precast Solutions
Centre and the Turkey Club Centre and B.J. Harvey, with Atlantic Cat/Cat Rentals, Dartmouth, present a cheque to the Centre offers an F-shape barrier
Society. with a JJ hook that meets
Guy Kendziora, with McAsphalt on behalf of their members.
or exceeds all NSTIR re-
Industries Ltd. in Dartmouth and quirements. Advantages of
B.J. Harvey with Atlantic Cat/Cat address some debt and pull us up. a JJ Hook barrier include
Rentals, Dartmouth, co-chaired There is also part of it that goes the fastest setting times of
both silent and live auctions at for children’s toys and equip- any system available, small-
the association’s annual meeting ment,” Weagle says. “This is so er installation crews re-
in Halifax and raised $15,370 for timely. They will never know how quired for placement, im-
the Sackville-based develop- timely this is.” proved worker safety be-
mental centre. Harvey says items for the auc- cause no hands are ever
In the previous two years tion were donated by the associ- required between the bar-
Kendziora and Harvey spearhead- ation’s membership. riers, and the ability to
ed events that raised $80,000 for And why does the association provide the tightest radius
the Children’s Wish Foundation do it? of any other connection
and $5,930 for the STAR program “We just want to give back to hardware, allowing reduced
in Truro that provides recre- the community,” Kendziora says. traffic congestion
ational games, activities and The Turkey Club Society of the The JJ Hook barrier also
sports for children with special Halifax Regional Municipality offers advantages in that
needs. received $5,000 last year from the there are no pins, bolts, or
Anna Weagle, program director road builders which was a signif- Contributed loose hardware required.
for the Sackville Bedford Devel- icant contribution to the $60,000 Turkey Club: Ron Legere (left), tournament chair with Jack This ensures a proper in-
opmental Centre, located in the the society raised. Cruickshank, Head Turkey, and Ken Thomas, 2009 NSRBA presi- stallation every time, and
lower level of the Sackville Kins- Jack Cruickshank, chair of the there is no worry about
dent. The Turkey Club Society of the Halifax Regional Municipal- vandals or scavengers
men Centre on First Lake Drive, society that is made up of volun-
says the donation is very much teers, says the $5,000 raised ity received $5,000 last year from the road builders. potentially removing hard-
appreciated. through a road builders’ golf ware before a project is
“It is absolutely awesome. It is tournament chaired by Ron Leg- Cruickshank said one of the The society also supports boys complete. The barriers are
the biggest fundraiser we have ere of Industrial Cold Milling, biggest benefactors of the society, and girls clubs, Hope Cottage and self-aligning, automatically
had in many years.” Dartmouth, is “a real boost for us which supports organizations that other organizations. ‘hooking’ into place. JJ
And the timing couldn’t have because the total we raise for help needy families, is the Parker Hooks are also the only
The society would not have system with identical ends
been better. The centre, which is Christmas is $60,000. We have Street Food and Furniture Bank reached its $60,000 goal if it
licensed for 30 children per day very little expenses and I think in Halifax. which means crews are
and historically offers programs that is one of the reasons the road “We give them a cheque for wasn’t for the road builders. never required to rotate the
for children with additional builders support us. We keep $25,000 when they are packing “They are the largest contributor barriers during the installa-
needs, has been struggling fi- expenses below five per cent and Christmas boxes for families. to the Turkey Club and we are tion process.
nancially so the “fundraiser came let them know where we spend They decide where the money is more than tickled with it,” Cruick-
at a time when we were able to the money.” spent.” shank says.
Joseph Robichaud Photography
Continued from / E1 ciation structure will be when
the structure supports the
industry in Nova Scotia.” association’s core purpose and
Early discussions in the mission, appropriate commit-
development of the plan cen- tees are in place, the executive
tered on the key areas the director has sufficient param-
association must focus on in eters to operate with reason-
order to be successful as it able independence, and when
moves forward. Those dis- there are ample candidates,
cussions led to the devel- from the members, to serve.
opment of five key focus The action plan for restructur-
areas: association structure, ing the association will be the
industry liaison, public profile, introduction of a structured
labour and workforce devel- meeting schedule with annual
opment, and member services. dates. Scott says that, overall,
Scott points out that for specific projects being under-
each focus area the plan estab- taken this year include by-law
lished strategic directives, amendments, committee res-
success indicators, and action tructuring, membership re-
plans. In the focus area of view, formalization and in-
association structure, for creased NSTIR/government
example, the strategic direc- meetings, and the completion
tion will be to revise the proto- of a workforce development
cols for board membership, needs study.
realign committees to meet “The NSRBA is on target
current association needs, and with this plan,” says Scott.
give the executive director “It will function as a guide
guidelines within which to for 2010 operations and give
operate. us direction and focus for the
Success indicators of asso- foreseeable future.”