We are featuring this project because it highlights the strengths of how the local construction business owners in Nanaimo can work together to help build the community. While the suspension of all baseball activities in BC continues throughout the pandemic, we are excited for when the day arrives that local sports athletes are able to use this space. We want to use this opportunity to thank every business involved in the construction of this project, we enjoyed working with everyone and are pleased with how everything turned out.
Together, IWC Excavation, with the support from 17 additional Nanaimo-based sub-trade contractors and building suppliers, volunteered their time, services, labour, and materials, to build a 2,500 square foot indoor batting cage facility for the Nanaimo Minor Baseball Association (NMBA) and the Serauxmen Sports Fields.
The existing outdoor batting cage attached to the Serauxmen Sports Fields required a significant upgrade. As a chain-link fence facility exposed to the elements, a lot of the structure and equipment was needing to be repaired or replaced soon. And being outdoors, it also couldn’t be used in rainy or cold weather, or at night, limiting the use of the space.
After looking into costs to continue to maintain the facility while still renting another facility in the off-season, the NMBA and its members reached out to the City of Nanaimo and the local construction and building supplies communities, to see what would be required to build a new facility, that its players in the Nanaimo community can safely use year-round.
A total of 18 local construction and building supply contractors, as well as the Vancouver Island University (VIU) Mariners Baseball Athletics program, agreed to donate their time, services, labour, and materials, to help the NMBA and the local Nanaimo community. Together, these donations accounted for nearly 90% of the project.
With experience managing site preparation for commercial and infrastructural construction projects, and having built trusting relationships with the volunteer network of Nanaimo-based sub-trades and building suppliers, IWC Excavation accepted the role of general contractor to help lead and manage this project.
This involved managing the design-build process with engineers and architects, as well as coordinating with the City of Nanaimo to secure all permits. Once approved, the site prep involved excavation, land clearing, and concrete forming, followed by the framing, roofing, sheeting, siding, and electrical installation of the building.
Final details include laying down the turf and installing the netting, which will be able to divide the facility into two or four separated batting cage spaces. This will allow multiple groups to safely use the space at the same time.
The vision for this new indoor batting cage building will be to operate as a fully non-profit facility, with ongoing support from Nanaimo’s active baseball community. Annual maintenance and taxes are expected to be covered by a combination of NMBA membership dues, as well as through rental fees that will be made available for private athlete training sessions.
This new facility is expected to be complete by the end of April 2020, but due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the batting cage building will not be operational until social activity restrictions have been lifted.
Below is a list of all 18 Nanaimo-based companies and the services that they donated to the construction of this project, who were instrumental in making this a success story for the entire community:
- JD Structural Consulting – Structural Engineering
- Lewkowich Engineering Associates – Geotechnical Engineering
- Stefan Schulson/Smruthi Patel – Architecture
- IWC Excavation – Excavation, Site Prep, Backfill
- Copcan Civil – Excavation
- Hub City Paving – Aggregate
- IWCD – Foundations
- Mayco Mix – Concrete
- Mindy Mayer – Concrete Pumping
- Island Concrete Finishing – Concrete Slab Pour and Finish
- Albertsons Hardware – Building Material
- MKM Projects – Building Material and Labour
- Classic Home Improvements – Framing
- Hi-Tec Industries – Trusses
- Slegg Building Materials – Roof Sheathing
- Westwood Metals – Roofing
- MacGregor Thompson – Doors
- IWCD – Siding
- Houle Electric – Lighting and Access
The VIU Mariners Baseball Athletics program and their student athletes donated their time and labour, to help install the turf and netting, and assist with other landscaping and detail finishing in and around the facility.
We hope the big takeaway from this post is how well a local construction community can work together with local organizations that support education, activity, and healthcare, to develop projects that have a lasting impact on the community. One thing this pandemic has taught us is how integral the community is to our livelihood, which is why it’s more important than ever to find ways to work together to support the community. This ability to come together to build opportunities and happiness is a shared value among ourselves at IWC, and every other business we worked with on this project.