Contractor successfully applies tilt-up construction techniques for complex projects
Canadian Design and Construction Report special feature
Surrey, B.C.-based Double V Construction Ltd. has developed an expertise in tilt-up construction.
The business, established in 1972 by brothers Nick and Paul Van Vliet, has grown to 35 employees, extending services to include general contracting, construction and project management and green and LEED buildings. The company is managed now by the second generation of Van Vliet brothers, Glen and Shane.
“We’ve been doing tilt-up since about 1990 and have done about 50 to 60 projects over the years,” says Shane Van Vliet. “Though we’ve done some basic warehouse projects we prefer to focus on more complex projects.”
Complex projects include structures on cast-in-place parkades and the four-storey Grandview Business Centre. “We’ve done taller panels but those we installed on the Grandview project were up to 190,000 lbs. – the heaviest we’ve done to date,” Shane said. This won the company the 2012 Commercial Building Award from the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board and it has been nominated for the Vancouver Regional Construction Association Award of Excellence.
The panels’ weight restricted the cranes that could be used, and the site had complicated access issues. “We invested a lot of time with the engineers and our preferred crane company talking about the layout of the panels on the site relative to their final position,” he said.
Double V prefers to self-perform all aspects of the job with the company’s own carpenters and labourers.
Van Vliet says the business has many repeat clients. In many cases, tilt-up is a good option, he said.
“Some clients specifically ask us for tilt-up and in other cases, we recommend it. The technology is economical and in British Columbia, with our seismic concerns, provides a complete and solid building diaphragm. It also allows us to construct a large building in a short period of time so helps with tight timelines.”
Van Vliet says B.C. engineers are comfortable with tilt-up construction and architects have been able to adapt it with design features and complexities. “In many cases, people wouldn’t recognize the work as tilt-up,” he said. “A lot of schools are going with this method for all the benefits of tilt-up and the detail that can be added.”
Double V Construction is a member of the Tilt-up Concrete Association (TCA). For more information, visit doublevconstruction.com.