Britco Supplies Disaster Relief Housing for Save the Children

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Britco Supplies Disaster Relief Housing for Save the Children
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
IN BRIEF
VAN PLANNER
Vancouver’s city
council has named Brent
Toderin as the new
Director of Planning.
Toderin last served
as Manager of Centre
City Planning and
Design for the City of
Calgary, where he
oversaw expansion of
the Calgary Stampede
and a new downtown
library and university
campus. Toderin will start
working for
the City of Vancouver
on September 14.
CALGARY MOSQUE
The largest mosque in
North America recently
began construction in
Calgary. The Muslim
place of worship will
measure 48,000 sq. feet,
and the $14 million
project will take
approximately 14 months
to complete. In addition
to accommodation for up
to 1,000 worshippers, the
mosque will also include
a dining area, convention
centre, children’s area
and sports recreation
centre. The mosque will
also feature a 97-foot
tower, from which the
imam traditionally sings
prayers. The cost of the
project was covered by
donations.
95th Year No. 59 $8.00
Britco helps
with houses
Langley, B.C. modular structure builder
set to create 3,000 structures for
tsunami-afflicted areas in Indonesia
WARREN FREY
STAFF WRITER
A
n Indonesian province that lost everything in the 2004
tsunami will soon
have new prefab buildings to
call home, thanks to a B.C.
company’s ingenuity.
Britco Structures, a modular structure company based
out of Langley, B.C.,
announced last week it has
been awarded the initial contract to build 300 homes destined for tsunami-affected
areas in Indonesia.
The trailers will be shipped
in September to Westport, CT.
based charity Save the Children USA, and from there will
go to the Aceh province in
Indonesia, one of the areas
hardest hit by the Boxing Day,
2004 tsunami.
The tsunami took over
167,000 lives, displaced an
estimated 700,000 people and
created a need for 100,000
new homes.
“The first phase of the
project involves the shipment
of 300 homes in the fall, but
this is just the beginning. The
entire project calls for us to
build up to 3,000 homes over
several phases,” Britco project
manager Randy Plewes said.
“As project benchmarks
are met, Britco will work with
Save the Children on planning
the next phases,” he added.
The project evolved after B.C.
Premier Gordon Campbell
committed $8 million towards
the relief effort, and a subsequent proposal was put out for
qualified vendors to create
small prototype housing that
would serve the needs of the
region.
The project also allowed
B.C. firms to showcase their
value-added wood products,
as well as design expertise in
small-scale wood frame housing.
see Britco on page 2
PHOTO BY BILL TICE
Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts and BC Minister of Forests and Range Rich Coleman pound the last nail into
a home intended for the Aceh province of Indonesia. Langley, B.C. based modular structure manufacturer
Britco is creating over 3,000 structures for those displaced and homeless after the 2004 tsunami.
UBC prepares plans for PPP
INSIDE:
Project Reports: pg. 4
Legal Advertising: pg. 8
Bidders’ Register: pg. 14
Marketplace: pg. 15
The University of British
Columbia will be the first school
in Canada to offer courses on
public private partnerships
PETER KENTER
CORRESPONDENT
Canada Post Publication Mail Sales Agreement 40063367
VANCOUVER
T
he University of British Columbia’s Sauder
School of Business plans to offer courses in
Public Private Partnerships (PPP)—the first
of their kind in Canada—by as early as
2007, says Tom Ross, director of Sauder’s Phelps
Centre for the Study of Government and Business.
The school recently received a three-year, $500,000
grant from Infrastructure Canada to develop course
material and conduct PPP research.
“When the provincial Liberals took office here in
2001, they announced they were using the PPP
model for major infrastructure projects,” says Ross.
“Suddenly I was receiving phone calls from the
media asking us to explain the funding model—but
there just weren’t a lot of people who knew.”
British Columbia received something of a baptism of fire as the government initiated a slate of
massive PPP construction projects including the
Sea-to-Sky Highway improvement project and the
Richmond-Airport-Vancouver Rapid Transit Project.
“But we relied a lot on expertise from the UK and
Australia early on,” says Ross. “There’s been a lot of
learning along the way.”
Ross says that having Canadians trained in PPP cil for Public-Private Partnerships (CCPPP).
processes could help to lead to efficiencies in future
The Council was one of the groups consulted in
projects. “In the early projects, administrative costs developing the emerging Sauder curriculum.
were probably higher than they might have been and “Addressing the immediate needs of those working
the bidding process was also expensive. We shouldn’t in PPP businesses and governments would provide a
judge the PPP model based on the first round of good foundation of knowledge of how PPP differs
projects.”
from conventional project develThe school’s academic efforts
opment and how the integrated
“In early projects... skills of engineering, finance and
have begun with the introduction
of PPP material into lectures and
administrative costs law come into play in a PPP
course content in undergraduate,
project,” says Jane Peatch, ExecMBA and civil engineering were probably higher utive Director of the council.
classes. The next likely step—a
Ross says the next step could
than they should
two-week intensive course with
be the introduction of 20 hour/
have been. We
possible certification. The profive-week PPP modules into the
gram would target current PPP
MBA program in the 2007-08
shouldn’t
judge
the
practitioners in both government
academic year. He notes that the
PPP model based on course material won’t be a proand industry.
“There’s room for learning on
motional vehicle for the advancethe first round of
both sides,” says Ross. “The pubment of PPP.
projects.”
lic sector decisionmakers will
“As the saying goes, ‘To a
have to learn to give up some conman
with a hammer, every prob— Tom Ross, UBC
trol and resist the urge to tinker
lem seems like a nail.’ Our prewith projects after they’ve started.
liminary research shows that for
The private sector needs to know
some projects PPPs may be very
what the government needs to see in a proposal. We useful and in others, they’re less likely to be successhear that bidders in PPP projects are including any- ful.”
thing they believe the government might be interOver the longer term, Peatch says the council
ested in, because they’re not always clear about the would like to see PPP integrated into various univergovernment’s objectives. The private sector also has sity disciplines, including engineering and law,
to realize that the government has to worry about across the country. “These courses could benefit
transparency, accountability, and some case issues from an exposure to the concepts of PPP and, where
like equality of service—even if that’s not necessar- appropriate, more detailed levels as it may relate to
ily the most profitable way to proceed.”
business cases and contract law, for example.
Targeting existing PPP practitioners first is an
Sauder is clearly taking a lead and we’ve been
approach favoured by the non-profit Canadian Coun- very pleased to see this initiative develop.”
2
www.journalofcommerce.com
Journal of Commerce,Wednesday, July 26, 2006
LIABILITY
Construction delays can mean legal issues
When an extended
construction schedule
means rising costs,
the end result can be
claims and counterclaims
T
he ideal for any construction project
is completion “on time and on
budget”. Additional costs unavoidably result from an extended construction schedule, particularly in an
environment of escalating material and labour
expenses and market pressures when new
construction is intended for sale. This means
that a project not completed on time will inevitably not be on budget. Since time is inherently of the essence in construction, delay is
often a source of construction claims, often
for large amounts.
Disputes generated by delays often involve
claims and counterclaims for large and often
optimistically calculated damages. It is therefore useful to keep the following legal issues
in mind:
1.
The basic contractual concept relating to delay is that a general contractor must
satisfy the contractual commitment to achieve which allows a time extension, but no adjustsubstantial completion by the specified Con- ment of the Contract Price, for delays not
tract Time, as reasonably adjusted.
caused by the general contractor. Such a con2.
Standard form and most other con- tractual term is unreasonably onerous, since it
tracts set out the circumstances
requires the contractor to absorb
of a general contractor’s entitlethe certain cost effect of a delay
ment to obtain extensions of the
which it did not cause.
Contract Time and the proce4. Outside of extension of the
dures for doing so. Usually, time
Contract Time and increase of
extension will be available for
the Contract Price obtained in
delays not caused by the general
accordance with the contractual
contractor or parties for which
provisions, delay on the part of
the general contractor is responthe general contractor beyond
sible, reasonable delay-related
the adjusted substantial compleadditional compensation will be
tion date is a breach of contract
granted together with extra time
with respect to which the owner
and timely notice to the owner of
will potentially be entitled to
potential delay-causing events
recover damages. The measure
will be a prerequisite to obtainof such damages will be the
ing such relief. The notice
amount required to put the owner
requirement is intended to afford
in the position which it would
the owner the opportunity to
have occupied had there been no
make timely decisions or alternabreach, subject to the limit of
J. Marc
tive arrangements to address the
reasonable proximity between
MACEWING
delay.
the delay and the loss. Recover3.
Some contracts place
able damages can include
on the general contractor all or a
amounts such as additional condisproportionate amount of the risks otherwise struction costs, increased design professional
allocated under the usual approach outlined in consulting fees, extended financing charges
item 2. A typical provision of this type is one and lost profit in a falling real estate market.
Legal
VOICE
5.
However, unjustified delay by the
general contractor will not automatically
translate into recovery by the owner, if other,
“concurrent”, delays which are not the general
contractor’s responsibility occur at the same
time as those which are its responsibility. If
the delays and their related costs would have
been incurred by the owner regardless of late
performance by the contractor, they will not
be attributed to the contractor. This may
negate an owner’s recovery for delay or limit
it to a net period when delay by the contractor
occurred alone.
6.
Legal authority indicates that owners have an equivalent duty to provide to general contractors timely notice of delay
attributed to the contractor, as a precondition
to pursuing delay damages against the contractors.
7.
Delay claims can be difficult to
prove, both as to causation and quantification.
Factors which may require expert assessment
include the actual impact of alleged delay on
the critical path of the schedule, the existence
and effect of concurrent delays and the calculation of the indirect impact of delays, such as
on productivity and profitability. Successful
prosecution of a delay claim may require the
engagement of professional claims analysts,
which can be an expensive proposition.
FROM THE FRONT PAGE
Britco and BCIT bring relief to Indonesia
continued from page 1
Britco, which has worked extensively building homes, industrial and institutional buildings
for remote areas, was selected to design a prototype home.
A special event was held at the company’s Langley facility on July 21, with representatives
from Save the Children on hand to review the first Britco-built home. Also attending the ceremony were Mr. Bunyan Saptomo, the Consul General for Indonesia, Rich Coleman, the BC
Minister of Forests and Range and Gary Lunn, the Federal Minister of Natural Resources.
“BC has become a world leader for our value-added wood products, and we are proud to
be a part of this project that will help many people who need shelter as a result of the tsunami,”
Coleman said.
The homes are pre-made, but they have also been designed with an eye to the unique
demands of the environment in which they will eventually settle.
“The homes have been designed to meet the seismic code for earthquakes and to be resistant to insects, especially the Formosan termite which is prevalent in the area. In addition, we
had to develop a design that incorporates a traditional Indonesian look to the homes. The
houses we are supplying for the first phase are 42 square metres and will be finished on site,”
Plewes said.
The homes will be produced at the company’s Agassiz, B.C. plant, and will be shipped to
Indonesia as pre-cut and panelized units.
The B.C. provincial government is also providing $65,000 through Forestry Innovation
Investment Ltd to help assemble the houses on site with the cooperation of the British Columbia Institute of Technlogy’s School of Construction and Environment training program. BCIT
will train and instruct Indonesian builders and government officials according to North American standards.
“We are very pleased to be working in co-operation with FII, Britco and Save the Children
to deliver training for this very special project. This partnership between industry, government
and education shows the true potential of what we can do when we work together,” BCIT
Canadian Housing and Construction Centre director Wayne Stevens said.
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PHOTOS BY BILL TICE
BC Ministry of Forests and Range Rich Coleman addressed a crowd of dignitaries last week (above left)
at Britco Structures headquarters in Langley, BC. The company was celebrating their first 300 structures
bound for tsunami-battered Indonesia. David Taft (top left), co-founder of Britco, with Kurt Alberts,
Township of Langley Mayor (top right), also took time out to show off the pre-made homes.

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