The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre prides itself on being green—but silver and gold aren’t bad either.

Four construction partners that worked on the Vancouver Aquarium’s recent expansion project have been recognized in the Vancouver Regional Construction Association’s Silver Awards of Excellence on Oct. 21.

Alpha Mechanical Contracting Ltd. and PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc. took home top honours, winning gold in their respective categories: mechanical contractors over $2.5 million and general contractors $15 million to $40 million.

Island Precision Millwork won silver in the Chairman’s Trade Award, up to $1 million, and Status Electrical Corporation also won silver in the electrical contractors over $2 million category.

The $32-million expansion was the most ambitious construction project in the Vancouver Aquarium’s 58-year history and our contractors faced a number of challenges in completing the work. The Aquarium remained fully operational during construction, meaning contractors had to work around hundreds of daily visitors and the more than 50,000 animals that call the Aquarium home.

Major deliveries had to be scheduled two days in advance with a start time of 5:30 a.m. to avoid disruptions. Meanwhile, large delivery trucks had to navigate Stanley Park’s tourist traffic and narrow, often one-way roads—at times requiring a police escort—and crews were tasked with keeping noise and vibration levels down to avoid stressing the animals. Additionally, contractors had to ensure there were no disruptions to the mechanical and electrical systems that keep the animals alive while dealing with high humidity in an aquatic environment.

Our contractors also played a crucial role in furthering the Vancouver Aquarium’s commitment to environmental sustainability. With the aim of achieving LEED certification, each company working on the expansion brought forward their expertise, helping to reduce the Aquarium’s environmental impact.

It is fantastic to see these community partners recognized for their work. We offer a heartfelt congratulations to all the winners.

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