The Construction Source

All the best, The Editorial Team We will keep adding business units that enhance our offering and separate us from our competition. “ ” Editor From The Dear Reader, Welcome to the latest issue of Construction Source Canada, the magazine that highlights the best in building and building products across the country. In this edition, we’ve looked at a wide range of players from across the construction industry, including many home renovation companies, several architects and designers, and a selection of suppliers and partners to the building industry – including one business-centric bank. As usual, we’ve also covered also some award-winning industry leaders in real estate development. Keltic Canada Development is one of those award-winning and industry-leading developers. They are a Canadian-owned and people-focused company founded with the goal of being a top-tier developer and building a lasting legacy in B.C. In previous issues, we covered some of their recently-completed and under construction projects, including ‘The Paramount’ in Richmond, ‘Park West’ in North Vancouver, ‘O2 Metrotown’ in Burnaby, and ‘NEXUS’ on 220 Prior Street in Vancouver. In this edition, we provide an update on those recent projects – for example, Park West is now fully-delivered, and was recently awarded the ‘Design Award of Excellence’ by the District of North Vancouver’s Advisory Design Panel. In addition, we preview some of their upcoming projects, which are expected to be their largest-scale and most impactful projects yet. Matrix Video Communications Corp, meanwhile, is a specialized video communications and media production solutions company. Since forming in Calgary almost 30 years ago, they have expanded to 12 offices across the country, and they have built a reputation as one of Canada’s top audio-visual and broadcast systems integrators. We caught up with Glenn Burgess, founder and CEO – we talked about Matrix’s history of growth, the increasing importance of videoconferencing in a post-COVID world, and his optimism about the industry’s future. Also in this issue is Monk Renovations. They are multi-awardwinning home renovation company with the goal of being the “the best in the Halifax renovation industry,” according to founder and owner Don Monk. We talked to Dan about that goal, the steps they have taken to achieve it, and about some of the industry awards they’ve won along the way, including three wins for ‘Renovator of the Year’ from CHBA Nova Scotia. For more on those stories – and a lot more stories like them, about other industry leaders spanning the construction spectrum – just keep reading.

THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA ORDER NOW! TOGETHER AT LAST. Take a deep dive into the science of building and renovating homes. The residential construction industry’s most comprehensive manuals are now available with discounted bundle pricing.

JULY 2023

THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA With over 90,000 senior executive readers, The Construction Source is proud to offer an attractive platform to share you message with the people that matter most - your customers. Whether your objective is to promote a new condo development, attract financial investment in your upcoming projects, or to build brand recognition, we stand ready to help! To find out more about having your company or latest project feature in The Construction Source, please contact our Group Publisher. Jermaine Poulsen e: The Costruction Source Canada 2201 - 250 Yonge St Toronto, Ontario M5B 2L7 E: Group Publisher Jermaine Poulsen General Manager Alexandra Box Operations Manager Shon Washington Head of Editorial Content Tamara Breen Scott Carter Production Manager Vicki Lee Editor Zach Janes Graphic Design Pranim Thapa

JULY 2023 KELTIC CANADA DEVELOPMENTS Nothing short of remarkable MONK RENOVATIONS Trusted professionals CANADIAN WESTERN BANK A bank built for business MATRIX VIDEO COMMUNICATIONS CORP Audiovisual meets innovation QUINIS DESIGN WORKS Form meets function meets budget PHOENIX PROJECTS Seeing the transformation PREMIER QUALITY RENOVATIONS Renovation solutions HAMMER & CASTLE Getting the details right SJ LAWRENCE ARCHITECT INCORPORATED Thoughtful and functional design PM SIGNS National Reach, Local feel INDUSTRY INNOVATIONS INCINERATING TOILETS IN THIS ISSUE JULY 2023 PHOENIX PROJECTS HAMMER & CASTLE



THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA Water connection not required Requires little space No odour Easy installation No frost protection needed Secure for children ash to be emptied No waste handling, only and more Bunkies, For Home, Cottages, Shops, 3 - 4 visits per hour High capacity Propane&Electric models ABOUT CINDERELLA ECO GROUP Cinderella Eco Group is a family-owned company located in the north-western coastal community of Midsund in Romsdal, with deep roots in the beautiful Norwegian fjord-landscape. We have more than 20 years’ experience with the Cinderella Incineration Toilet, a water-free, ecological solution for the management of toilet waste. Cinderella, the natural first choice for those who place high demands on quality and functionality. HIGHLIGHTS OF INCINERATION TOILETS:

JULY 2023


Nothing short of remarkable

Keltic Canada Development (“Keltic”) is a Canadian-owned and people-focused real estate development company based out of Vancouver, B.C. They are a company founded in 2016 with the goal of being a toptier developer in the region and building a lasting legacy. In the years since, in pursuit of their goal, they have put together a world-class management team and they have delivered a diverse array of acclaimed development projects. Over the past several years, especially, Keltic has delivered some of the most innovative and forward-thinking developments in B.C. For example, they have now fully delivered their acclaimed ‘Park West’ project in North Vancouver, and they are now hard at work on their ‘O2 Metrotown’ and ‘Masimo HQ projects, with many more exciting projects in the pipeline. “We’re four years in to a fiveyear plan,” says Mike Wurm, Senior Construction Manager. “It’s a really exciting time for Keltic. We’re finishing up a lot of our legacy projects and now we’re really starting to look at our next phase. We’re charging forward.” The company’s most recently completed project is Park West, a multi-residential development in North Vancouver that includes 258 residential units and 13 commercial units between two towers. Recently, that project achieved full occupancy, and Mike says that reviews from the tenants have been glowing. He personally credits that response to the quality of the marketing as well as the quality of the building: “It looks like it’s been there forever,” he says. “It’s a really nice addition to the District of North Vancouver.” JULY 2023


Mike also credits the response to the beauty of the project. He says it “completely adds life” to the corner its on, for example, and he also commends the well-received public art by Blessing Hancock, a celebrated sculpture artist with work all over the world. For Park West, she designed a piece called ‘Alluvii’ – a series of three sculptures that integrate nature and new technology with a overall theme of innovation and new experiences. Mike says Park West has not only been well-recieved by residents, it’s also been recognized by the wider community. For example, the District of North Vancouver has an ‘Advisory Design Panel’ that reviews development applications and public projects against urban design objectives. Every year, that panel also annually present awards to encourage excellence in design and to recognize projects that significantly contribute to the built environment of the district. Last year, they awarded Park West their ‘Design Award of Excellence.’ In particular, the panel commended Park West for its site plan. They praised the development team for locating the massing to protect views and accommodate new pedestrian and vehicle connections. They also extolled the “excellent pedestrian spaces” around the transit stop, plaza, and one-way road; and they said that the various architectural details “give a relatively large development a more refined sense of scale.” Keltic shared that award with architect Rafii Architects and landscape architect PFS Studio. Another important contributor was general contractor Graham Construction – they JULY 2023

are a frequent partner of Keltic Canada Development, having just recently worked together on ‘The Paramount,’ which was also highly successful from both a sales and construction perspective. “The partnership with Graham works so well because they are very people-centred and they give their staff the agency to solve problems in a way that’s going to benefit the entire project,” Mike says. “They don’t just work on an issue in order to get it to the point where they are no longer responsible for the issue. They really do work for the betterment of the entire project. That’s why we really enjoy working with them.” Currently, Keltic is working again with Graham Construction on their ‘O2 Metrotown’ development, located at 6620 Sussex Avenue, in the heart of Metrotown, Burnaby. That project comprises a 30-storey condominium high-rise consisting of 285 residential market condos with a fivestorey rental building and is the most sought after wellnessdevelopment in the region. The focus there is “wellness,” as the building was inspired by the principles of the ‘WELL Building Standard’ – a performance-based system for measuring, certifying, and monitoring features of the built environment that impact human health and wellbeing, through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind. Keltic is not only working with Graham again on O2 Metrotown, they are also working with a lot of the same subcontractors from The Paramount. For example, they will be using the same form workers, the same reinforcement contractor, and THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

they are currently working with the same overseas partner on their glazing system. Moreover, Keltic is also working again with Thomas Cannell, a Musqueam artist who also contributed the public art to The Paramount. The Paramount featured a stain glass-like installation named ‘Sea to Sky,’ which spanned a triangularshaped façade on five stores above the main entrance lobby into the building. The piece was an acclaimed focal point of that project, and Keltic envisions something similarly attentiongrabbing for O2 Metrotown. Another Keltic project currently under construction is located on 220 Prior Street in Vancouver, just steps from the new St. Paul’s Hospital and Health Campus. Mike describes that project – which was previously marketed as ‘NEXUS,’ now known as ‘Masimo HQ’ – as a “stratified medical office tower” that offers “the most innovative delivery of integrated care in BC and Canada.” It includes nine storeys of strata office and industrial space, state-of-theart building design, and top-tier amenities. To deliver that project, Keltic is working with general contractor Syncra Construction. As the new name suggests, they also recently partnered with Masimo, a global medical technology company that develops and produces a wide array of industry-leading monitoring technologies, including innovative measurements, sensors, and patient monitors. When the building opens up in the first half of 2025, it will be the home base for 170 highpaying jobs with Masimo. JULY 2023


Charging forward While the projects under construction are very exciting, Mike reiterates that the best has yet to come for Keltic Canada Development. Moving forward, he says company has a number of significant projects in the pipeline, including some of their largest-scale projects to date. An example is 1560 Rand in South Vancouver. There, on a site “situated perfectly for businesses and employees located in Vancouver, Richmond, and Burnaby,” Keltic will be developing over 600,000 square feet of stacked light industrial and office space across two buildings. They are currently working with TKA+D Architects on the design and they are doing preconstruction with Graham Construction. Also coming soon is a project at the corner of Kingsway Avenue and Willingdon Street in the Metrotown area of Burnaby. Keltic purchased the site late last year, and their plan there is to create a one-million-squarefoot residential and commercial development, including two towers, with one currently as high as 59 storeys. Currently, JULY 2023


Proud to Provide Civil Engineering Services for Keltic’s exciting projects. SURREY VANCOUVER NANAIMO KELOWNA CALGARY EDMONTON TORONTO they are going through the design development and city approval process on that project, and they are working with the renowned Gensler Architects out of New York as well as Chris Dikeakos Architects out of Vancouver. Lastly, at 5502 Lougheed – also in Burnaby – Keltic has plans to develop three residential and commercial mixed-use towers, which will be located near coffee shops, grocery stores, and other everyday amenities. The plan is for all three towers to be between 45 and 50 storeys. “We’re looking to create landmark projects in Burnaby,” Mike says. “We’re really primed to make our mark. We have some really exciting projects coming up.” Moving forward, Keltic’s goal is to continue developing and delivering projects of that calibre and scope. In fact, they are not at all afraid to get even bigger, as Mike says there’s virtually no project outside of their capabilities. Lastly, however, the company doesn’t just want to deliver their own projects – they also want to leverage their experience and expertise on behalf of other developers as a consultant. They have been providing consultancy services for third-party developers for a couple years now, and they intend to continue growing that aspect of their business. “We’re offering our services to developers who don’t have our team’s extensive development and project management experience,” Mike says. “We can bring instant value to those kinds of partners. Our services are adaptable to projects of all sizes, types, construction methodologies and procurement methods.” “Our vision is to be an industry leader,” he concludes. “We want to be a company that other companies look to. I think we’ve earned that reputation. Our track record over the past four years has been nothing short of remarkable.” JULY 2023

For more on Keltic Canada Development and their completed, current, and upcoming projects – plus more on their consultant services, partnerships, and world-class team – visit THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Trusted professionals

Monk Renovations is a multi-award-winning home renovation company dedicated to always doing what’s right for the client. Founder and owner Dan Monk started the company in 2009 with the goal of building a reputation as “the best in the Halifax renovation industry.” He made his name part of the brand because he wanted clients to know he stood behind his work. Over the years, he’s worked hard to protect that reputation by providing a high quality product and professional service every time. “We’re a company that will always do what’s right for the client and the renovation,” Dan says. “From the start, we work diligently to understand the project and provide the most accurate quote possible,” he explains. “Using our experience – and my perspective as an engineer – we provide guidance when it comes to design and home renovation decisions. We make sure clients feel confident that our solutions are going to increase the functionality and aesthetics of their home.” “We partner only with suppliers and manufacturers that meet our standards,” he continues. “We make sure that our clients get quality products. We also strictly work with licensed professionals, and with people who take pride in their work. We won’t just hire anyone off the street who can swing a hammer. Our carpenters are skilled and trained professionals who are personable, friendly, and interactive with the client. “We make sure we provide consistency in craftsmanship and quality with our MONK Process,” he says. “We want clients to continue loving the JULY 2023


house they’re in for years to come. We want to be their go-to contractor for future renovation projects. And we want them to refer us to their friends – and when they do, we want them to know they are going to be in good hands and receive the same quality treatment.” As he mentioned, Dan comes from a background in engineering. Prior to starting Monk Renovations, he spent roughly 15 years working for other construction companies. Over the course of his previous career, he noticed that there were no local residential renovation companies that had engineers on staff. He believed that was a niche he could fill. “Having an engineer at the helm, I think we bring something different to the table,” he says. “We have a certain way of approaching things. We’re methodical. We’re logical. The design needs to work. It needs to function.” “When I look at a project, I always look at through the lens of an engineer,” he continues. “And I always have. I remember when I started the company, a few colleagues asked me, ‘Are you still an engineer?’ I said, ‘You can’t stop being an engineer.’ It affects the way I look at the world. It affects the way I look at problem solving. I’m always going back to my training. I bring that to every job. I can’t help it. I even bring it to my personal life.” “So when people hire me, even though I’m not working as an engineer, they still get the same mentality,” he says. They get the same logic, the same rational, the same attention to detail. That’s what makes us different from a guy with a truck and a hammer.” JULY 2023

When he started Monk Renovations, Dan was open to projects of all kinds – one of their first jobs was a chicken coop, for instance. In the years since, the company has grown in both size and profile, so the scale of their work has trended up. Today, Monk Renovations routinely services clients within a 50 kilometre radius of the Halifax area. They excel at kitchen renovations, bathroom and ensuite renovations, basement renovations, and additions. No matter the size or scope of the project, however, Dan believes that clients choose the company for the same reasons – namely, their attention to detail on-site, the quality of their craftsmanship, and the quality of their service. When it comes to their service, Dan believes the key is being “open, honest, trustworthy, and professional.” “Our slogan, as much as we have a slogan, is ‘Trusted – professional,’” Dan says. “We tell our guys every day that if we act professionally, and we maintain the trust of our clients, we will always have a good relationship. People really just want respect. They want to be heard. That’s what we provide, that’s what we do.” At Monk Renovations, they recognize that a home renovation project is intensely personal. At the beginning of a project, most clients hand them their keys and then go off to work, leaving them alone in their private residence. “In some ways, that’s a scary responsibility,” Dan says. “We don’t take that lightly. We take that very seriously. We know that maintaining trust is absolutely critical to our THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

business.” Over the years, Monk Renovations has had a lot of success in building that trust. According to Dan, the vast majority of their work has historically been generated from word-of-mouth, referrals, and even repeat customers. He believes there’s no better indicator of trust than that. When it comes to the quality of their work, meanwhile, Dan again credits his background in engineering and the analytical way he looks at projects. He also credits their material selection and their longstanding roster of subcontractors and tradespeople. “We only source high quality materials, and we only work with professional trades,” he reiterates. “Many of those relationships go back eightto-10 years. It took us a little while to build those relationships, but once we had, we stopped shopping around. We have a team that we trust, that we can count on to be there when we need them.” Dan also says that Monk Renovations does “the little things” on site, and that also sets their quality apart. “We come back and we do the little things. So many companies never come back to do the little things, and that reflects upon quality.” “A job could be 99 per cent done and almost everything’s perfect, but maybe there’s a little piece of trim that never got put on. Maybe there’s a paint touch-up that needs to be done. Maybe there’s door that needs to be adjusted. Those are little things, but we really focus on getting back and making sure they get JULY 2023

done. I think that means a lot to our clients.” Monk Renovations’ quality is also evidenced their industry awards – at the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA) Nova Scotia’s Peak Awards, for instance, the company won ‘Renovator of the Year’ four times. All that said, however, Dan says that quality is – and should be – “presumed.” He says that Monk Renovations delivers to a high standard, but that should be expected, and it’s not what actually sets the company apart. “Nobody hires anybody expecting they’re going to get a poor quality product,” he says. “About five years ago, we actually did an unofficial survey of our clients that year, and we were asking people two questions: why did you hire us, and why would you refer us? And you know what? Not one person said quality – because it’s presumed.” “The number one reason people hired us was we showed up,” he continues. “We booked an appointment and we showed up. It is remarkable how many people don’t even show up. Secondly, why did they refer us? They said, ‘Because you did what you said you were going to do and charged us what you said you were going to charge.’” “Honestly, I think that puts us in the top 10 per cent or higher of residential renovation businesses. We show up and we do what we say we’re going to do for the price we said we’re going to do it for. That’s what makes us trusted professionals.” THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Growing responsibly Over the past couple years; Monk Renovations has been able to grow significantly, even throughout the pandemic. Last year alone, Dan estimates the company grew by 35 per cent. Moving forward, his goal is to keep that growth going – and to add team members to accommodate it, as there “are only so many hours in the day,” and thus only so much he can look after personally. Today, the company’s direct team consists of Dan as the owner, three project managers, 11 carpenters and carpenter-apprentices, and a design department consisting of two designers and one project coordinator. As the company grows, Dan intends to restructure it somewhat to give those team members more individual responsibility and give them more opportunity JULY 2023


to stretch their wings professionally. “I want to empower my project managers,” he explains. “I want to give them more responsibility. I’ll still be ultimately responsible for the overall project, but I know that in order to grow I’ll need to cede some of the day-to-day responsibility.” And Dan does see the company growing, he reiterates: “Our city is growing,” he concludes. “There’s no sign of that changing. The real estate market is growing. The value of real estate has been increasing, so we’re seeing more people renovating older product, which is great for us. I see us doubling the size of our business over the next five years.” JULY 2023

For more on Monk Renovations, their services, their past projects, and their history of award recognition – and to get in touch with Dan and his team – visit THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

A bank built for business

Canadian Western Bank (CWB) is a full-service bank for Canadian business owners and decision makers, providing expert advice and specialized financial services for small-and-mediumsized companies, including construction companies. Their goal is to be “the best bank for business owners in Canada” – and they strive to achieve that goal by partnering closely with their clients, gaining a deep understanding of their industry, and proactively finding ways to help them succeed. “We’re here to help our clients grow,” says Jeremy Bloy, Assistant Vice President, Business Development with CWB’s Commercial Banking team. “Our reputation is built on the long-lasting relationships we’ve built with clients and the products and solutions we’re able to provide.” According to Jeremy, clients say that the experience they get with CWB is one you normally don’t expect from banks. He also says that a lot of the new business that comes to CWB is a result of referrals from those in the business community. As further testament to their efficacy, CWB has also been recognized by their peers in the industry – recently, they were proud to be named the 2023 Business Lender of the Year by the Canadian Lenders Association. That award recognizes the outstanding performance of a lender that provides Canadian businesses “with exceptional service, support and a deep understanding of their needs,” Jeremy says. He adds the award also highlights CWB’s emergence as “a clear alternative to small- and medium-sized business owners that prefer a proactive and JULY 2023


personalized experience from their financial partner.” In a statement after winning the award, Stephen Murphy, Group Head, Commercial, Personal and Wealth for CWB, said that “more businesses need a hightouch banking experience today because a one-size-fitsall approach to lending simply doesn’t work in today’s market.” “We listen to what they want and need, and we pursue creative ways to become a strategic partner that helps them grow and succeed,” Stephen said. CWB is part of CWB Financial Group, a diversified financial services organization providing specialized service in banking, trust and wealth management. Their history goes back to 1984, when they started as a single branch operating in Edmonton, Alberta. In the years since, they have grown to become a western-based, federally regulated financial institution with a national presence. Jeremy personally joined CWB roughly eight years ago. He was drawn to the company for their culture and their values: “The main thing is that CWB puts people first,” he says. “People are cared for here. There’s care for employees and care for our clients. That’s what drew me to CWB.” Since joining up, Jeremy has seen CWB evolve significantly, in terms of both company size and head count, and as well as in terms of technology. As the bank has grown, he’s also seen their clients grow significantly. Those customers span a variety of industry sectors, including: general commercial; manufacturing; equipment financing; construction financing; commercial real JULY 2023

estate financing; real estate construction and project financing; and equipment financing and leasing. According to Jeremy, clients in those sectors tend to choose CWB for reasons similar to those that attracted him eight years ago: “It’s our relationship approach,” he explains. “That’s what sets us apart. We intentionally build relationships with our clients. We take the time to talk to them, to get to know them, to understand what their needs are, and to figure out what we can do to support them.” “We’re not just a lender. We strive to be a financial partner for our clients so they can achieve their goals.” CWB is further set apart by the calibre of their team, Jeremy adds, and the way that team collaborates: “We have an experienced team of experts all working together to deliver for our clients,” he says. “We’re not siloed. We don’t have various departments all working independently. We foster strong relationships internally with our team members – and that shows when we’re interacting with our clients.” CWB’s team is also very responsive, Jeremy says. He believes that’s another key point of difference: “Our clients can always reach us,” he says. “You’re not going to get a call center. You’re not going to get pawned off. When you have an issue or question, you’ll know more than just one person to call. We put a team of experts around our clients, and someone will always be available. And if you need to talk to me personally, I’m available at pretty much any reasonable hour.” THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

“If there’s a need, we also pride ourselves on being very quick to act,” he adds. “We have internal metrics we adhere to in terms of timeliness and expediting requests. We understand the needs of business. We understand that if our clients need something, they need it in a certain timeframe – and we deliver.” That relationship-centric approach, combined with their accessibility and responsiveness, has helped CWB form longstanding relationships with clients. According to Jeremy, many of their clients have been banking with them for “years and years.” He knows one client that has been with CWB for over 30 years. He personally has many clients that started banking there shortly before or after he was hired: “I’ve been with them since day one,” he says. “We’ve been able to grow together. I think that speaks to the service we’re able to provide and the relationships we’re able to build.” He further credits that kind of loyalty to the bank’s “proactivity.” “I’m in constant communication with my clients,” he explains. “There are many clients I’m speaking to on a weekly basis. But if for whatever reason we haven’t had a chance to connect in a while, I’m calling them at least once a month to check in and see how things are going.” JULY 2023

Lots of opportunities In recent years – especially during the height of the pandemic – the construction industry experienced some wellpublicized challenges in terms of supply chain uncertainty and rising inflation. Fortunately, those issues have lessened over time, as logistics costs have come down, companies have learned to find alternatives for material supply, and inflation has steadied. When those challenges were at their peak, however, CWB was there to support their clients. “When the supply chain issues were at the height, it wasn’t that product wasn’t available, it was the uncertainty of when it would be on a work site,” Jeremy explains. “Sometimes it would be there when it was expected to, and sometimes it wouldn’t, or it would take a long time to arrive.” “In that situation, we would look at the client’s operating loan and ensure it was structured in a way that matched the updated cash cycle – that is, the time from when they purchased their raw materials, to when the materials arrived, to when they were able THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

to sell the product and turn it into revenue. For many clients, we got creative with the terms of their loan and restructured them so the business had the ability to succeed under their current cash cycle. The result was that clients under this type of pressure gained the ability and the capital to purchase materials with confidence.” Moving forward, that’s the kind of support, flexibility and personal service that CWB intends to offer their clients regardless of any challenge facing the construction industry. There’s one looming challenge that Jeremy does not expect to limit the growth of his construction clients - the specter of recession. He says that governments tend to continue infrastructure spending through these periods, and many contracts will come up for offer. “If you’re an infrastructure contractor and you have the liquidity, capacity, knowledge, geographical positioning, required equipment and staffing levels to bid on these projects, I think you’re wellpositioned going forward.” In the residential construction sector, meanwhile, Jeremy points out that there is a clear and obvious “disconnect between housing supply and the number of new houses needed.” Federal immigration targets, for example, are about 800,000 annually – and those new residents will need places to stay. “For construction companies, there’s huge opportunity there to produce homes for new Canadians,” he says. Of course, there are challenges to producing those homes – even though inflation has levelled off and the supply chain is relatively back to normal, costs remain high, interest rates have increased and affordability is a problem. Even given those challenges, Jeremy says the builders who have a plan to manage their costs, who can absorb potential market changes, and who can complete projects at a price that meets market expectations “are poised to earn a return on their investment.” “From our view, capital should always be available to good, strong businesses,” Jeremy says. “CWB’s approach is that we’ll always support the right client, regardless of what the economy is doing.” Jeremy Bloy, AVP, Business Development, CWB’s Vancouver District. JULY 2023

For more on Canadian Western Bank, their professional advice, specialized services, and why business owners love banking with them – and to get in touch with their expert team, including Jeremy – visit THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Audiovisual meets innovation

Matrix Video Communications Corp. (MVCC) is a specialized video communications and media production solutions company. Since forming in Calgary almost 30 years ago, they have expanded to 12 offices across the country, and they have built a reputation as one of Canada’s top audiovisual and broadcast systems integrators. Today, their services include consultation, design, managed services as well as installation, programming, training, and everything in between, and their solutions include videoconferencing systems, digital signage solutions, collaboration spaces, video walls, split-meeting room configurations, and much more. The expert team at MVCC is backed by decades of experience. No matter the project – and no matter the client and their industry sector – they take pride in working closely and collaboratively with their clients to provide a technological solution that meets all their needs. “A complete audiovisual system is a valuable investment and plays a significant role in improving employee productivity in day-to-day operations,” says Glenn Burgess, CEO. “Collaborative workspaces and presentations have become a part of everyday business. These practices help teams communicate, present, and train over the web or in meeting and huddle rooms of all sizes and functionalities.” “Like any industry, there are many audiovisual solutions available,” he continues. “MVCC is a strategic technology partner who will assess all requirements and communication challenges, provide recommendations, JULY 2023


and design the appropriate solutions for every client’s unique circumstances.” Glenn personally started working in the video communications business in 1981. Along with his wife, Shelly, he founded MVCC in Calgary in 1994. Originally, they focused more on the broadcast side of the business, before getting more involved with audiovisual integration over time, to the point where audiovisual integration now comprises the majority of their work. Today, as previously mentioned, MVCC has 12 offices across Canada – they are headquartered in Calgary, with additional offices in Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Windsor, London, Toronto, and Ottawa. Between their offices, they now employ roughly 115 people. In terms of their projects, they service a diverse array of industries, including: energy; government; healthcare; retail; legal and real estate; education; finance; and more. “We’re well suited for pretty much every market and industry,” Glenn says. “For anyone that needs an audiovisual system, we can design the system and install the equipment.” No matter the industry they are servicing, Glenn believes that their clients choose MVCC for the same reasons. One of the main reasons, in his opinion, is the experience, knowledge, and flat-out dedication of the company’s staff at every level. “I think we have a really great team of people who care about the business, who care about their clients, and who care JULY 2023

about providing solutions that meet their needs,” he says. “We’ve also been very fortunate to have some longstanding people,” he adds. “We have people who have been here for decades, and they are still very passionate about what they do. They want to win. They want to please clients.” Robert Wojtas, the company’s COO, is an example of such a team member. He’s been in the industry since 1992, and has been a part of MVCC since 2002. He adds that one of the company’s “secret sauces” is that their salespeople also act as project managers on any integration projects they bring in. “They are part of the project from A-to-Z,” he explains. “They don’t step away from it. They see it all the way through. They are very active and engaged throughout the whole process. The client always has a point of contact who understands their project completely and always knows what is going on.” Having that consistent point of contact creates a high level of comfort and trust, Robert adds – and that comfort and trust tends to lead to repeat business. In fact, according to Glenn, the majority of MVCC’s work comes from repeat clients. “Our business is built on repeat business,” Glenn says. “Some of our key clients have been with us for 12, 15, and 20 years. We’ve built some personal relationships with a lot of construction professionals, and they tend to use us no matter what company they’re with. They go from job to job, and when AV is required – and in most cases, it is – they’ll bring us in.” THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Robert further credits that loyalty to MVCC’s adaptability and responsiveness. When there’s a problem with one of their projects, he says they strive to act quickly: “When we get a service call, we tend to jump,” he says. “We look at our schedule and we figure out the quickest way we can get someone there. We’re very adaptable. We’re very customer service driven. I think that’s a big reason for our success.” One of the reasons MVCC can react so nimbly, Robert adds, is the size of their team. As previously mentioned, the company employs over 115people across 12 locations – including a number of in-house programmers, who can tweak and change programming remotely, which further enhances the company’s responsiveness. Over the years, MVCC has built some longstanding relationships with team members, just like they have with clients. Again, Glenn says they have a number of team members who have been with the company for over a decade, as well as some that have been there two decades. He believes that’s a credit to their family roots. “We started as a small family business,” he says, “and we’ve been able to retain that culture, even as we’ve spread out into different locations and added more people. We started off with five people in 1994, and four of the five are still with us. I’m obviously one of them, and I’m still very active in the business. My wife is another, and she’s still very active. The family feeling hasn’t gone away.” As evidence of that family JULY 2023

atmosphere, Glenn cites the fact that they now employ multiple generations of several families. He says they have at least four sets of parent-children team members in various offices – “which I think is pretty cool,” he says, “it shows that we have a culture that people want to bring their families into.” Robert agrees. He remembers personally joining MVCC about 20 years. He was coming off 10 years working for an international audiovisual brand, which he remembers as “pretty cutthroat and competitive.” “Coming to MVCC, it was all about teamwork,” he recalls. “Everyone was helping each other. The sales team was very helpful. The technical team was very helpful. As we’ve grown, we’ve tried to keep that same culture – and I think we’ve been very successful.” MVCC has also historically been successful at building relationships with their suppliers and subcontractors. According to Glenn, they have fostered those relationships by “always trying to be as honest as we can,” and by “staying loyal to the suppliers we’ve been with for a long time.” One longstanding supply partner is 3Dot Technologies – they are a specialty distributor and technology focused expert in the video wall business. When it comes to display wall solutions, they are the industry’s leading experts. They are backed by many years of experience in manufacturing and integration, and they work with only the most reputable of manufacturers. Just like MVCC, they also work closely with their clients on each project to bring their concept to life. When they find a partner who demonstrates that kind of client focus and commitment to quality, Glenn reiterates that they try to hold on to them. THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Investing and growing Over the course of Matrix Video Communications’ long history, audiovisual technology has evolved significantly, and it continues to evolve significantly with every passing year. Since the beginning, staying on the cutting edge of innovation has always been one of the company’s main priorities. Robert credits their success to their “daily training.” “We keep in close contact with our suppliers,” he explains. “Our salespeople get a lot of training –they get a lot of hands-on training, and obviously webinars have been very popular since COVID. Our integrations team, same thing – they get either online or in-person training on a very regular basis.” “Training is so important,” he emphasizes. “We believe that we have to have highly technical knowledge of the products that we represent and install. We don’t believe we can just rely on a spec sheet – we know that doesn’t give you the whole picture.” “You have to be continuously learning,” he adds. “I don’t think JULY 2023


you have a choice. Technology changes so often, you have to keep investing in training and education.” Moving forward, Robert says that MVCC will continue to invest in training and education – and at the same time, they will continue to grow, like they have been doing at a steady pace over the past few years, especially in eastern Canada. “We definitely have room to keep growing,” he says. “We’ve been in eastern Canada for a few years now, but we’re still not where we want to be. We’ve been doing really well, but we’re still just scratching the surface.” “We’re going to add more people,” he continues. “We’re going to bring on more technical savvy and more capable salespeople – that’s not the easiest thing to do these days, it’s hard to find good people, but that’s our goal and we’re going to keep looking.” “There’s so much opportunity,” he says. “Just in videoconferencing alone, there’s so much potential for growth. Videoconferencing technology has been around for maybe 30 years, but COVID has brought it to the forefront over the past two years. It’s more popular than ever before.” “We’re very optimistic about the future,” Glenn concludes. “The core of our business has always been communication; it’s about the need for us humans to communicate effectively with each other. Technology can really help meet that need, but I don’t think there’s any cookie-cutter way to do it, and I don’t think there’s going to be a cookie-cutter way to do it in the future. That means there’s always going to be a role for a company like ours – a company that develops specialized systems that help businesses communicative effectively both internally and externally. So we’re definitely excited about the next few years.” It’s also worth noting that MVCC is now a member of the PSNI Global Alliance, the most recognized network of technology providers for communication and collaboration. PSNI gathers and rigorously certifies the top AV and UCC technology providers from around the world and enables them to work as “one organization,” Glenn explains. As a member, MVCC can complete projects in over 170 locations around the world utilizing vetted partners. JULY 2023

For more on Matrix Video Communications, their range of audiovisual services, their past projects, and their partners – and to get in touch with Glenn, Robert, and their team – visit THE CONSTRUCTION SOURCE CANADA

Form meets Function

Quinis Equestrian is an industry-leading provider of custom architectural design and project management services for equestrian facilities, including stables, barn facilities, and riding arenas. From their home base in Abbotsford, BC, they deliver extraordinary and innovative designs for clients throughout Canada and the United States. Each of their projects is unique and responds to the individual needs and requests of the client, but on every project they have the same two goals, according to company founder and president Ernest Neudorf – to “fulfill the client’s vision, on time and on budget,” and to “bridge the gap between horses and their owners through design, creating healthy and purposeful spaces for both.”

To achieve those dual goals, Quinis takes on the role of both designer and project manager, acting as a liaison between client and builder to ensure design criteria and overall project schedules are met. “We stand as an educated representative throughout the design and building process,” Ernest says. “Developed through many years of working with industry professionals, we have established clear standards and recommendations for equestrian design throughout all disciplines.” Ernest has studied design at the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV), technical studies at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) and RAIC Architectural Syllabus Program over the course of his over-25-year career, he has been involved in several different fields of design, from commercial to high-end custom homes but his passion has always been equestrian design – he grew up around horses, he’s been a horse owner and rider himself, and he has a deep understanding of the fundamental connection between horse, rider, and stable. Ernest first got his start in equestrian design on a residential project – the client was happy with the home he designed and asked if he could design the barn, too. After proving himself on that project, the referrals started coming in. After later doing a barn for a well-known rock star, he earned a strong reputation in the sector. About ten years ago, he realized there may be a unique market in equestrian design and that’s when he changed the company name to Quinis Design Works (a.k.a. JULY 2023


Quinis Equestrian). He started building his team with this new vision and currently has a small but talented team of five staff. In the years since, Quinis Equestrian has worked all throughout Canada, the United States, and beyond. Ernest says that’s been one of the most fun parts of working in this typology: “When you’re doing custom homes and commercial buildings, your market is almost always local to where you live,” he says. “You’ll go maybe an hour drive in every direction, but that’s pretty much it. With custom equestrian, it’s very different. It’s basically a global market. We’ve done projects as far south as Mexico. We’ve worked in Hawaii. Right now we have serious inquiries from areas like Qatar, Australia, and South Africa.” Over the years, Quinis Equestrian has also worked on a wide range of projects in terms of size and scope – and they still do a variety to this day. Currently, for example, they are working on both a threestall project as well as a couple 50-stall projects. No matter where the project is, and no matter the size, Ernest believes that clients are looking for knowledgeable, professional, high-level service from inception to move-in. “We’re well-educated,” Ernest says. “We educate ourselves as much as we possibly can about all the technology and products that are available for the horse market and for stables and arenas.” At the same time, they don’t recommend products just because they are new. They thoroughly vet virtually every new product that comes on line, and if a new product doesn’t meet the goals or level of value to a more timetested alternative, then they can confidently relay that information to their clients. And on the other hand, when new products are effective, the company moves quickly to adopt them and recommend them to clients when it’s pertinent to their project. JULY 2023


The threelegged stool Another significant point of difference for Quinis, according to Ernest, is the way they focus equally on form, function, and budget. He says a project is like a three-legged stool, and those are the three legs. “If any of the legs are weak, the project isn’t going to stand,” he explains. “All three legs have to be equally strong. The project needs to have form (look architecturally pleasing), it needs to function (layout, both within its-self and on the property), and it needs to be delivered on budget, or it’s not going to be a successful project.” When it comes to form and function, Quinis Equestrian has the experience and knowledge to understand that no two barns or stables will have the same requirements. They also have the experience to meet the client’s unique requirements, whatever they are. “What’s right for one client isn’t necessarily right for the next. One client will say ‘I would never do that,’ JULY 2023


(877) 259-1528 LEGACYBUILDINGSOLUTIONS.COM and the next client will say ‘I would never do anything else.’ We understand that and we’re able to fulfill the visions of both those clients.” Again, Ernest says, Quinis’ experience and expertise is especially valuable when it comes to making a project function effectively. Function, he says, is the really exciting part of a project for him, and can never be sacrificed over Form. “We can make something pretty, no problem, we do that every day,” he says. Function is where our expertise comes in. And the function is so important in an equestrian facility. You’re taking an animal that is normally, by nature, outside, and you’re bringing it into a controlled environment. That environment has to be safe and healthy. The light, the water, the air – everything has to be planned just right.” Understanding and managing the climate of a barn is much more challenging than controlling the climate of a residential home, Ernest explains: “A horse at rest in a stall generates the natural heat and “off-gas” of about 10 people,” he says. “When you have horse that has been exercised and is hot, that number jumps to about 30 – one horse in a stall is like having 30 people in that stall. So if you have 10 stalls and you have 10 horses that have recently been ridden, that’s like having 300 people in that barn.” Then there’s the last leg of the stool – the budget. Ernest emphasizes the importance of that leg, as it’s the most JULY 2023