Client: Confidential
Location: Ontario
Size: N/A
Delivery Model: Public-private Partnership/Design-Build-Operate-Maintain

J.L. Richards & Associates Limited (JLR) was the Prime Consultant for the preliminary design of a Source Separated Organics (SSO) processing and Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) facility for a large urban Municipality in Ontario. With an estimated construction value of more than $200M, delivery of the facility was structured around a design-build-operate-maintain (DBOM) contract model.

The proposed facility was designed to receive and process more than 90,000 tonnes per annum of incoming curbside municipal SSO. Using a proprietary anaerobic digestion (AD) process the SSO would be converted into biogas and other beneficial byproducts. The biogas generated through the AD process was then to be upgraded and injected into the natural gas system for beneficial use by users of the utility, namely the residents of the Municipality.

As Prime Consultant, JLR provided overall project management of the multidiscipline/multifirm design team that was spread across 10 time zones.  JLR’s scope of services also included architectural design, building information modeling (BIM) coordination, as well as structural, environmental, building mechanical, building and site electrical, and energy systems engineering consulting services. The AD process design as well as site plan and utility design were undertaken by collaborative partners under the leadership of JLR.

While the project was ultimately cancelled by the Municipality, the project is still considered a success by the project team for several reasons. The collaborative nature of JLR’s multidisciplinary structure, along with key partners, allowed the team to effectively pivot to a fully virtual work environment with the onset of COVID-19 in March 2020 (approximately halfway through the original project schedule). The application of BIM facilitated effective communication and collaboration between members of the design team as well as other internal and external project stakeholders. Finally, the broader team gained invaluable technical knowledge and experience in the application of AD technology for processing municipal SSO and the production of biogas – an ever growing industry in Canada.

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