16th Annual Awards Celebrate Exceptional Innovation and Excellence from Sea to Sea to Sea

TORONTO, Nov. 1, 2013 /CNW/ - The Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships (CCPPP) is proud to announce the 2013 recipients of the National Awards for Innovation and Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships - projects that are breaking new ground, boosting the economy and improving the lives of Canadians. The winners are providing Canadians with cleaner air, water and soil; safer, faster and better transportation options; innovative and compassionate social housing and more. And they are doing it at the highest standards of quality - while providing substantial savings and efficiencies over traditional procurement processes.

The awards will be presented on November 7th at The Council's annual conference. The gathering attracts major players from across Canada and around the world, where the Canadian P3 approach is considered best in class.

This year's winners include a mass transit project in Ottawa, highways in Alberta and New Brunswick and Canada's first P3 biosolids project in Sudbury. The P3 Champion of the Year is John M. Beck, Chairman and CEO of Aecon Group Inc., an icon of the construction industry and a leader in both the corporate and non-profit worlds.

"We are seeing extraordinary and rapid evolution in the ways that P3 projects deliver robust new infrastructure and quality-of-life enhancements for Canadians," said Mark Romoff, President and CEO, CCPPP. "These projects are using innovative financing and unique approaches to infrastructure and service delivery. They offer great solutions to Canada's serious infrastructure deficit."

Gold Award Winners

Ottawa Light Rail Construction Project, Confederation Line (Transportation Innovation Award) - By combining a major LRT build with the widening of Highway 417, Ottawa is taking a giant step towards the achievement of its master transport plan - with minimal disruption to its downtown core and significant savings over the traditional approach. The performance-based contract will generate $3.2 billion in economic activity and 20,000 person-years of employment during construction alone. Once finished, the project will result in increased transit ridership, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, improved accessibility, less traffic congestion, as well as substantial job creation and economic development. It will offer the public safe, comfortable, reliable, fast and pleasant transit in an environment that showcases both heritage and new public art.

Route 1 Gateway Project, New Brunswick (Infrastructure Award) - A core route in New Brunswick, Route 1 is the national and international corridor linking the south of the province to the USA and to the other Atlantic provinces. The new four-lane highway project bundled greenfield construction with selected upgrades, bridges and wildlife crossings. It has greatly improved the safety and efficiency of the highway and trade corridor and offers major economic spinoffs for local businesses. The project attracted first-time support for a domestic P3 project of this nature from two federal agencies, Export Development Canada and the Business Development Bank of Canada. Most notably, 75 per cent of the design-build was completed by New Brunswick workers, suppliers and contractors and delivered under budget and seven months ahead of schedule.

Silver Award Winners

Northeast Anthony Henday Drive, Edmonton (Project Financing Award) - This vital transportation corridor built by the Government of Alberta improves the mobility of residents around Edmonton and its surrounding communities and supports the economic development of the province by improving the transportation of goods.  It is the largest P3 transaction ever in the Province of Alberta, and along with the Northwest and Southeast sections, the first Canadian ring road to use the P3 model. The project achieved a new financing benchmark since the credit crisis of 2008, with a spread of less than 200 basis points over the Government of Canada's bonds of equivalent maturity. The $1.81 billion contract (2012 dollars) provides value for money of $370 million (17 per cent) over the Province's estimate to perform the work traditionally. Alberta's P3 model for transportation projects is recognized as best in class and is being examined around the world for adoption. This project received a 2012 Award of Merit from CCPPP.

OPP Modernization Project (Infrastructure Award) - The first of its kind, this project bundled several facilities in 16 smaller and remote communities served by the Ontario Provincial Police. Its innovative integration of three mid-size regional contractors under the leadership of a large design-build contractor employed a local workforce and stimulated the regional economies. At the peak of construction, 1300 workers were on the job daily. Local outreach meetings by Infrastructure Ontario and the private partners early in the procurement process were essential to the success of the project. It is the first to be financed by a long-term fully amortizing bank loan since the 2008 financial crisis, creating more competitive financing conditions for future AFP projects. The $292.7 million project provided value for money of $51.3 million versus traditional delivery. The 18 buildings are all designed to achieve Silver LEED certification. They will provide more efficient and effective policing infrastructure, enhancing community safety and supporting Ontario's justice system.

Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Renewal Initiative Project, Downtown East Side, Vancouver (Social Housing Innovation) - BC Housing faced the challenge of housing some of Canada's most vulnerable citizens, many of them with complex challenges including mental illness, alcohol and drug addictions and physical disabilities. Thirteen SRO hotels in their housing stock were in heritage buildings more than 100 years old, and in need of urgent repairs. The P3 project required innovative solutions because of ongoing occupancy. It procured 175 net new units to serve as interim accommodation as the project was under way. The project agreement included provisions to provide access to medical and social programs throughout, as well as specific levels of skills development training and employment opportunities to residents of the DTES and First Nations individuals. It is the first social housing project to obtain funding through PPP Canada ($29.1 million) and it achieved value for money of $5.2 million compared to the traditional method. The project will provide a safe, healthy and sustainable living environment that will help residents to live with stability, autonomy and dignity - all vital to their journey of recovery - as well as reducing the human and economic cost of homelessness in the DTES.

C.W. Chuck Wills Award

Sudbury Biosolids Management Facility - This is the first P3 for Sudbury, a mid-sized city with limited access to capital, and the first P3 biosolids project in Canada. The project involved several small and medium-sized local partners in the design and construction. After 30 years of disposing activated sewage sludge in Vale's tailing ponds, with the attendant environmental risks and foul odours, Sudbury is now leading the way in community sustainability. The new facility will generate a value-added product that will be sold for use in many industries, including mine reclamation around Sudbury. The project generated value for money of $11.1 million and leveraged financing from PPP Canada of 25 per cent of eligible costs, to a maximum of $11 million. The Chuck Wills Award is presented to outstanding municipal P3 projects in memory of the former CAO of the City of Windsor, who was a steadfast supporter of P3 and a CCPPP Board member.

2013 P3 Champion

John M. Beck, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Aecon Group Inc., is a tireless champion of P3s with deep knowledge and expertise in their planning and execution. He has more than 50 years of experience in the construction industry, in Canada and around the world. Mr. Beck has led heavy civil projects such as bridges, highways, airport infrastructure and precast concrete manufacturing, as well as buildings, commercial and industrial projects and public-private partnerships for the development of infrastructure such as airports and toll roads. He has always generously committed his time to public and non-profit boards, serving as Chair of the Board of the Ontario Power Authority and as a Director on the boards of the Macdonald-Laurier Institute for Public Policy, the Ontario Financing Authority, the Canadian Council of Chief Executives and CCPPP. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and a graduate in Civil Engineering from McGill University.

About The Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships: Established in 1993, CCPPP is a national not-for-profit, non-partisan, member-based organization with broad representation from across the public and private sectors. Its mission is to promote innovative approaches to infrastructure development and service delivery through public-private partnerships with all levels of government. The Council is a proponent of evidence-based public policy in support of P3s, facilitates the adoption of international best practices, and educates stakeholders and the community on the economic and social benefits of public-private partnerships. The Council organizes an annual conference that is recognized internationally as the premier forum bringing together senior government and business leaders in the P3 community at which the most successful Canadian public-private partnerships are celebrated through CCPPP's National Awards for Innovation and Excellence.

SOURCE: Canadian Council for Public-Private Partnerships

For further information:

For more information about CCPPP contact:  

Mark Romoff, President and CEO, CCPPP
416-861-0500         
mromoff@pppcouncil.ca       

For Media Enquiries contact: 

Chris Allicock
416-694-3131 (o)
416-319-8003 (c)
chris@amberlight.ca 

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