Historic preservation and leadership recognized

The Ontario Public Works Association (OPWA) has recognized Guelph’s commitment to historical preservation and restoration. The City was presented with the award for 2017 Project of the Year for Historic Restoration/Preservation in the less than $2 million category for the Guelph Transit Terminal Renovation.

Steven Di Pietro, Construction Engineering Technologist for the City of Guelph, was also presented with the 2017 Wally Wells Young Leader Award. The awards were presented at the OPWA’s Annual General meeting in Mississauga on Jan. 25.

The Transit Terminal, originally built in 1911, has been in continuous operation for over 100 years. The Association noted the complex nature of the project including the requirement of three levels of Government heritage-designation approvals and exterior and interior improvements to restore the building’s historical finishes while upgrading it to meet current standards for accessibility, security and communications.

The City also worked closely with the Ministry of Natural Resources to ensure habitat protection for the rare Eastern Chimney Swift, a threatened species that sometimes live in old chimneys.

“The City of Guelph is very pleased and proud to accept the award for historic restoration,” says Mario Petricevic, general manager of facilities management at the City, speaking at the awards ceremony, “Thank you to the Association for recognizing the efforts of our project team.”

Petricevic applauded the work of the project team, recognizing project manager, Rob Broughton, architect Janet Stewart and her team at Thomas Brown Architects, general contractor Jim Blair and his team at Collaborative Structures Limited, and the sub-contractors on all teams.

“To complete any project on time and on budget takes team work, collaboration, cooperation and strong leadership,” said Petricevic. “This team was definitely a clear example of what can happen when these qualities are adhered to and demonstrated by all parties.”

Leadership in engineering

The OPWA hands out the Wally Wells Young Leader Award in recognition and encouragement of young OPWA members who have demonstrated a commitment to the profession and the Association, and who show potential for future growth.

As the current chair of the OPWA’s Young Professionals Committee, Steven Di Pietro has represented the highest standards for his industry, working with the Association to promote new membership and enhance networking opportunities, especially for young professionals.

“Steven has been a welcomed addition to the City’s engineering team, where he uses his experience and knowledge to prepare detailed designs for road projects,” said Antti Vilkko, manager of design and construction. “I know I speak for our entire team when I say that this award is well deserved and we congratulate him on this achievement.”