CISC Ontario Awards recognize innovation and excellence in steel construction


Ontario Construction News special feature

The twenty-third CISC (Canadian Institute of Steel Construction) Ontario Design Awards of Excellence this spring have represented both innovation and excellence, the association says.

Charlie Jenks, CISC regional manager for Ontario, says the awards recognize stakeholders. “For this reason we not only give awards to the award winning members, but also to the architects, engineers and owners who decided to use our preferred building material.”

The awards are judged every two years. This year’s winners were recognized at an April 23 gala at the Steam Whistle Brewery in Toronto, hosted by Breakfast Television co-host Kevin Frankish.

Eligible projects for this year’s awards had to be completed by March 15, 2015 and be completed by a CISC-member steel fabricator. Location within Ontario is not a requirement.

Projects for the awards may be nominated by any project stakeholders and are judged under four categories:

  • Architectural which includes buildings or other structures in which architectural considerations predominantly influenced the design of the structure.
  • Engineering, which includes buildings, bridges, process plants or other structures in which engineering considerations predominantly influenced the design and construction of the structure.
  • Sustainability, including buildings or other structures in which steel has been re-used, recycled or used as part of a sustainable development project such as LEED.
  • Projects Converted to Steel, which includes buildings or other structures in which structural steel was chosen over other building materials because of its unique structural qualities. In this category, an award is presented to the “Best Converted Project.”

Jenks said the six judges who reviewed this year’s 25 submissions included architects, engineers and general contractors. “The judges look for innovation, engineering challenges, fabrication challenges and erection challenges. A great deal of time is spent as well deciding if the project is suited to the category it was nominated for and if it includes the innovation etc. they are looking for.”

Winners are:

2015 Centennial College Ashtonbee Campus Renewal

Category: Architectural | Award of Merit

Brookfield  Place Pavilion

Category: Architectural | Award of Excellence

Lassonde School of Engineering, York University

Category: Converted to Steel | Award of Excellence

Humber College Building F Addition

Category: Engineering | Award of Merit

Queen Richmond Centre

Category: Engineering | Award of Excellence

Lee’s Avenue Bridge

Category: Engineering | Award of Excellence

The Breithaupt Block Building One

Category: Sustainability | Award of Merit

Jenks says innovation was key in all of the winning projects. “In the engineering category there was the challenge of supporting a nine-storey structure above a heritage building using AESS steel.”

In the architectural category, he said innovation required fabricating the “basketball nets” to come together on site within millimetres. “In the engineering bridge category the team fully assembled a highway bridge and moved in into place within a 16 hour window which was the longest span rapid deploy in North America.”

In the sustainability category, he says original steel was re-used and turned into a new skeleton that will last another 100 years.

Jenks says in addition to this recognition, Award of Excellence winners from each region in the country are automatically nominated to the National Award of Excellence at the association’s AGM, this year to be held in San Francisco.

For more information about the award winners,


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