Completing Edmonton’s Ring Road from the Owner’s Engineer Perspective

February 1, 2017 NACITE Luncheon

Presented by Sandra Gaherty

Presentation Summary

The final section of Anthony Henday Drive in Edmonton opened to traffic on Saturday, October 1, 2016, making it the first completed ring road in Alberta.  ISL Engineering has been involved as Owner’s Engineer for seven years on this $1.85B project, representing the interests of Alberta Transportation.  Clients in Alberta and elsewhere continue to adopt the Design Build Finance Operate (DBFO) or P3 alternative delivery model and as such experience and understanding of the role of Owner’s Engineer in such projects is becoming increasingly relevant.

The role of Owner’s Engineer on a DBFO project, as opposed to a traditional design consultant and construction supervisor, brings its own set of unique challenges and risks.  It is a role of reviewing and auditing rather than directing, instructing and approving, often balancing the intent of the Agreement with a more pragmatic approach.  It is also a very reactive role where the workload is very much dependent on the Contractor’s schedule and is therefore unpredictable.  This presentation will provide a focus on the differing requirements of being a P3 Owner’s Engineer at key stages in the project lifecycle against the back drop of this well-known and (sometimes) well-loved Northern Albertan project.

About the speaker:

Sandra Gaherty is a Senior Municipal Engineer with ISL Engineering. She has been involved with the Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project since the beginning of the procurement phase in 2010, having moved all the way from Edinburgh, Scotland in the middle of an extremely cold Edmonton winter.  With a background in water and wastewater, but also some experience in Alternate Delivery Methods, her role quickly developed from reviews of drainage elements on both Northeast and Northwest Anthony Henday, to becoming more involved in the general contract management issues of the Northeast Anthony Henday Drive. Sandra graduated in Civil Engineering from the University of Edinburgh and in addition to several years working as an engineer in Edinburgh, she has also worked in Sydney, Australia and for a summer in Hong Kong.

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