University of Alberta Dentistry Pharmacy Building
CanadaCompany Name: Kerr Interior Systems
The Dentistry Pharmacy Building was originally built in 1922- and is one of the University of Alberta’s most historic buildings and it entered redevelopment in 2020 as part of a strategy to consolidate space for staff and programming.
This 42,000-square-meter facility provides modern and collaborative research, laboratory, and teaching spaces for the Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. The building has been renamed the University Commons as it sits in the heart of U of A and will be a gathering space for all members of our community—housing various academic, research, service and administrative units. Originally built in phases starting in 1922, the renewal of this iconic structure blends old with new to create a bright, modern, dynamic space for learning, teaching and research. It will be a place that belongs to everyone, a front door that welcomes all. Blending our campus history with the future, the building’s 1922 brick façade leads to a meeting place in a modern, new seven-story North Wing.
Kerr has worked diligently the past 22 months planning, restoring, reinforcing and rebuilding elements all through the 1922 building while simultaneously erecting a seven-story start of the art modern and innovative North Wing.
The century old brick façade of the 1922 building is now face to face and one seamless unit with the new Glass 7 story north wing.
42 000 m²
Company name: Kerr Interior Systems
Main Representative: Wendell Wiebe & Darryl Wiebe
Number of collaborators: 110 employees
Specialties: Steel stud framing, Drywall and taping, Insulation, Acoustic ceilings, Specialty ceilings and acoustic panels, Load bearing steel stud building
Founded in: 1978
Biography: KERR started in 1978 by: Ken Rubin, Ed Wiebe, Russ McAuley, and Ron Creusot, hence the name KERR. They started out as a T-bar company, doubled their revenue in 2 years. They were committed to each other, they slowly grew the company through the boom of the late 70’s and surviving the bust of the early 80’s and the recession that followed. In 2007 KERR started developing a semi-automated assembly line for panelizing to improve efficiency and reduce time spent on site. KERR can construct up to an 8 story building using Load bearing steel stud and Comslab or Ultra-bond floor systems, or a combination of steel stud joists and shallow deck for the floors. KERR builds custom steel stud Roof trusses up to a 60’ span.
Innovation Partner: Clark Builders, Andrew Ross – CEO
Contractors: Wendell Wiebe & Darryl Wiebe
Integrating 1922 craftsmanship with 2022 building materials and process.
Space in Attic 4’ in Height Confined Working conditions
7 Story High Atrium- All glass- Extensive Scaffolding- Critical Lighting
Complex Angles-Arches-and Curves
Custom Dome Build – Very Intricate Cuts and Framing
Fruit Bowl Ceiling Restoration-Water Damage- MAJOR Repairs
Completing it On Time
Staying on Budget
Plaster Restoration – 85 year old Plaster Consultant – new materials had to innovate and consult and find new materials- repairing damaged plaster and making it new again with FibaFuse MAX and Plaster- and use of Latex and metal molds. Repairing and rebuilding the Fruit Bowl Ceiling is a huge achievement and the ceiling is now beautiful and back to a better condition than it originally was and will probably last longer due to the use of FibaFuse MAX in the molds. Were able to utilize CertainTeed’s line of finishing and taping mud to complete and restore the ceilings and walls in the building providing minimal shrinkage and making sanding easier as well. Being able to re-use some of the plaster castings with the FibaFuse is a great example of waste management.
Attic Envelope – Due to the original structure being built in 1922, a better than average barrier solution was required, to bring the old building up to today’s standards – to achieve this we used the MemBrain Continuous Air Barrier Smart Poly Some areas required an STC rating of 59, this was achieved using CertainTeed 5/8” Type X drywall (double layer) & CertainTeed Batt Insulation
Team Work & Pride -Workers took an extra level of care and pride in the detail and complexity of the work and took ownership and attention to detail to be able to recreate restore and rebuild such a unique and historical building. As well as carrying on the level of attention to detail in the new 7 story glass building attached to the original building.
Innovation – For Framing, building and designing very complex angles and arches, domes, and coves all of these features are what married the old and new architecture of this historical building and is an architectural wonder of creativity and adaptability. This complex work that was able to be completed by Kerr was made possible by their teams ability to innovate and create and gave them the ability to create the look requested by the architect Auto Cad not typically used was able to have cad support by a Kerr Team member to utilize CAD to design and build the angles to the exact precision required – radiuses and complex architectural features and curves
Saint-Gobain products & systems
Adrien Williams Photos Inc.