Civic and Public Institutions represent the heart and back bone of our communities. They are often the social and cultural touch points of government in our lives. They house our public services and our seats of governments. They are our schools and libraries, hospitals, pools, gyms, skating rinks and other sports arenas. They are our police stations, museums, performance and community centres. They are our airports, roads and bridges.
They are the public spaces and places where we feel a sense of community and civic pride.
Institutional Acoustical Engineering Know-how
HGC Engineering understands the unique set of acoustic engineering challenges that each of these areas creates due to the specific nature of the activities and operations being undertaken within them. We have spent nearly two decades building our expertise while providing noise, vibration and acoustics solutions for Civic and Community Institutions across Canada, the United States and around the world.
Public-Private Partnership (P3) Project Experience
With declining revenue and growing budget deficits governments around the world are no longer in a financial position to carry the full cost and responsibility of civic and institutional developments. As a result, cost effective alternative models of funding and delivery have been established. Public-private-partnership (P3) initiatives are today a growing and dominant way for governments at all levels to responsibly fulfill their civic infrastructure mandates.
HGC Engineering is an active contributor to both Planning, Design, Compliance (PDC) and Design-Build (DB) teams on many P3 projects. We work with leading developers, planners, builders, architects, and engineers, providing comprehensive assessment and design services for all acoustical-related aspects of these large scale and complex developments.
LEED and WELL Certified buildings
We have also performed acoustical consulting for a variety of Green Building projects, which have become more prevalent in recent years. There are special challenges to developing good practices in acoustics for LEED and WELL Certified buildings, and we are familiar with the acoustical implications associated with their associated systems, standards and certification processes.
HGC Engineering offers consultation services relating to acoustics, noise and vibration at all stages of a project
Environmental Noise and Vibration Studies
These feasibility studies examine the noise impact of nearby roads, highways, rail and subway traffic on the proposed site and its future occupants. As well, the study assesses the potential effects of vibration from adjacent subway or railway lines on a building’s foundation and structure. A study will also look at surrounding industries, buildings or activities nearby for potential stationary sources of noise or vibration that might impact the planned site. Additionally, we will review any early details the project team can provide on the site plans, looking for new noise and vibration sources associated with the design such as such as cooling towers, heating plants, loading bays, generators, helipads, that may in turn impact surrounding buildings and environments. These aspects are considered in a preliminary fashion in the context of a study and only general recommendations for mitigation of environmental noise and vibration are offered at this juncture.
At this Planning Stage we also offer:
- Expert Testimony for municipal hearings
- Peer Review
- Acoustic Design Spec and Brief for Design/Build RFP
During Building Design
We review the internal design of the building and its systems in order to provide acoustical guidance and recommendations to the architectural, mechanical, and electrical members of the team, with appropriate follow-up through construction.
There are several aspects of the project during construction where we are also able to offer additional assistance for the design/build team.
Construction Vibration Assessment: Toronto is one of the few cities in North America with a City By-Law, 514-2008, that requires that a Construction Vibration Assessment be conducted in support of an application for a building or foundation permit. It mandates that a Professional Engineer assess the potential for impact on off-site structures in a “zone of influence” by the vibration effects of shoring, excavation and demolition activities. HGC Engineering is fully versed in all aspects of Construction Vibration Monitoring and Assessment. We offer the in-house know-how and monitoring technology your require to efficiently and cost-effectively meet your assessment and timeline requirements. Visit our Construction Vibration Monitoring and Assessment page for more details.
Shop Drawing Reviews: Shop drawings can be reviewed once the project enters the construction phase. We will review typical base-building equipment drawings for consistency with the specifications and recommendations contained in our initial review.
Site Inspections and Testing: Site inspections or field testing is often driven by the sensitivity of a specific issue or the complexity of its implementation.
Commissioning: During commissioning we will conduct measurements of reverberation and background sound to confirm compliance with the criteria.
Noise and Vibration Complaints: We offer on-going noise and vibration complaint forensics and troubleshooting to building managers of both new and mature buildings.