The B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure announced the winners of the 2023 Transportation Contractor of the Year Awards of Excellence.

Contractors who build and maintain British Columbia’s vital roads and transportation infrastructure were honoured for their work helping to keep people and goods on the move.

The B.C. Transportation Contractor of the Year awards celebrate achievements in construction, road and bridge maintenance, safety and community service.

“These companies have gone above and beyond to provide excellent service to British Columbians, often during some challenging circumstances like extreme weather and wildfires,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “They have shown extraordinary commitment to innovation, diversity, community service and the environment.”

Bridges and Structures award

Gitga’at Park Derochie Industrial Services Inc. is being recognized with the Bridges and Structures award for their rehabilitation of the Old Skeena Bridge near Terrace – bridging the past, present and future. The company’s work preserved the 1925 bridge’s historical significance, a symbol of the region’s rich heritage and scenic beauty. Facing a significant increase in the project’s scope, the firm added a second shift and finished the work four months before schedule. Gitga’at Park Derochie also protected the surrounding natural habitat to ensure that the bridge remained a vital link in an environmentally sensitive fish-bearing river used by First Nations people for traditional activities.

Paving award

Dawson Construction Limited is receiving the Paving award for resurfacing more than 54 kilometres of Highway 97 at Hixon, south of Prince George. The company’s use of 15% recycled-asphalt pavement created a smoother and sustainable road. The company switched gears and helped manage traffic during the fire season. The community appreciated Dawson’s frequent communication with the Township of Hixon. The company completed the project well ahead of schedule and within budget.

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Grading award

Thompson Brothers Construction is receiving the Grading award for rising to challenging circumstances in completing the Highway 29 Lynx Creek bridge replacement and highway-realignment project. As a response to flooding from a reservoir, the project included a large highway-embankment fill, a 150-metre bridge and a 280-metre causeway crossing Lynx Creek. The company moved more than two million cubic metres of material. Thompson Brothers extended a stability berm, provided embankment-wave protection and adapted final grading while adjusting schedules to accommodate new work and delays due to wildfire evacuations. While work was underway, the company maintained community access to a boat launch.

Workplace Health and Safety award

AIM Roads is receiving the Workplace Health and Safety award for using a system to enhance worker safety during road maintenance, with far-reaching significance that could lead to fewer accidents or injuries across the road-construction industry. The Safety Intelligent Protection Technology (SIPT) system protects road-maintenance crews by creating a virtual fence and AI-driven hazard alarms, in addition to traffic-control devices. SIPT’s alerts mean that workers now react more swiftly to potential hazards. AIM has had fewer incidents and worker injuries since it began using SIPT.

Road and Bridge Maintenance award

Capilano Highway Services is receiving the Road and Bridge Maintenance award for redefining industry standards to keep people and goods on the move on the Sunshine Coast, with innovations like safety and quality software programs, smartphone apps and improvements to winter maintenance. The company excels in emergency operations, stepping up for temporary storm repairs to ensure safety for road users. The company supports a range of community activities and is committed to diversity and inclusivity, including hiring First Nations subcontractors.

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Community Service award

Yellowhead Road & Bridge Ltd. (Vanderhoof) is receiving the Community Service award. For five years, the company has partnered with the non-profit Murray Ridge Ski Area, providing crucial road maintenance, snow removal and parking-lot care to ensure safe travel for students on ski days. This partnership saves the ski club thousands of dollars each season and makes skiing more affordable for people in the community. The company also partnered with the Stellat’en First Nation on the Stella Road pedestrian walkway project, donating materials, equipment and more than 550 person hours. This one-kilometre route separates pedestrians from traffic and enjoys widespread community use, including families with children, elders, and people who use wheelchairs.

Featured image: Thompson Brothers Construction received the Grading award for it work on the Highway 29 Lynx Creek bridge replacement and highway-realignment project. (BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)

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