Vancouver's Fast + Epp scores big wins at three major global engineering awards

VanDusen Botanical Gardens Visitor Centre internationally recognized as significant engineering achievement

VANCOUVER, Nov. 3, 2012 /CNW/ - Structural engineering firm Fast + Epp (F+E) won an award for their ground-breaking work on the VanDusen Botanical Gardens Visitor Centre wood roof structure from the highly respected Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE).  Presented in London, England yesterday evening at a gala ceremony, the award marks a major milestone for the firm which earlier this year won awards from the Canadian Consulting Engineers (CCE) and the National Council of Structural Engineers Associations (NCSEA) in the US - the only Canadian firm to achieve the distinction of winning all three prestigious engineering honours for one project.

Acknowledging the fine design work of the lead architects for the project, Perkins & Will, Paul Fast the lead engineer credited ever-more ambitious architectural challenges for pushing his firm to pursue creative and efficient solutions that are making a mark on the international stage.

"As a team we relish the challenge of taking an architect's creative vision for a structure and developing an agile engineering solution that allows for the use of unexpected materials such as wood for these kinds of ambitious structures," Fast stated.  "The large orchid-shaped roof of the Visitor Centre uses unique prefabrication techniques to construct high-quality roof panels that could quickly be erected onsite. I believe that's what has surprised and impressed judges and it's what has set our firm apart from any other in North America."

Best known for developing the world-renowned and award-winning Richmond Olympic Speedskating Oval pine-beetle wood roof, F+E also works with a wide range of materials including concrete and steel to produce esthetically-memorable and functionally-impressive structures.

Among numerous other honours for the VanDusen Botanical Gardens Visitor Centre, F+E also received two significant distinctions from the Consulting Engineers of British Columbia -- the 2012 Lieutenant Governor's Award, and the Award for Engineering Excellence as well as the World Architecture News top engineering project award.

The VanDusen Botanical Gardens Visitor Centre is located at the VanDusen Botanical Gardens in Vancouver, BC.  It officially opened to the public on October 23, 2011.  The striking entrance serves as an interactive education centre and welcome portal to revitalize public interest in the gardens. It includes lecture rooms, exhibition space, a café, and guest services.

Vancouver-based structural engineers Fast + Epp have a thriving practice based out of British Columbia with a reach across western Canada and into the US, China, Japan, Korea, and Europe.  The Company focuses primarily on public projects with an emphasis on architectural structures but also takes on projects in the private sector.  In 2010, the Frankfurt Office was opened in Germany as a milestone in the Company's commitment to serving its clients abroad.

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SOURCE: Fast + Epp

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