Bluenose Academy P-9 School

Architecture49 Inc.
Year Completed:

In collaboration with our partners at Architecture49 (formally WHW Architects), BMR served as the structural consultant-of-choice on the award winning, 78,000 square foot Bluenose Academy P-9 school in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. Designed for up to 500 students, this state-of-the-art school was awarded the 2012 Canadian Solar Thermal Project of the Year by the Canadian Solar Industries Associations as well as LEED Gold certification. Sharing the facility with local residents in the community, the three-level school includes a 6,800 square foot gymnasium, library, cafeteria, music & drama rooms, corridor learning commons, and tech spaces among other amenities for students and staff.

The facility consists of a structural steel frame of varied complexity supported on a reinforced concrete foundation system. The open-concept interior spaces required long-span open-webbed steel joists be incorporated into the roof design. Second and third level floor framing consists of composite concrete slabs supported on a combination of structural steel beams, open-webbed steel joists, and load-bearing masonry walls. Laterally, the complex building diaphragms were designed the resist wind and seismic loads through a series of structural steel rod braces and concrete block shearwalls. The large areas of architectural curtain glazing near the main entrance and cafeteria were designed to resist wind loads through a series of structural steel girts and wind columns within the wall assemblies.

BMR’s team really came together to successfully complete this challenging project. Our valued client says it best:

“BMR has always been at the top of our list when it comes to choosing a structural engineering
firm. They are creative in their solutions, responsive to schedules and the daily demands of
designing to our client’s deadlines, they understand the needs of the contractors on site and are
quick to respond to whatever situations arise to ensure construction is not held up. They meet
our design schedules without excuse and their work is always of a high quality. They are
experienced in all facets of design and are a pragmatic group who will do whatever it takes to
get the job done.”

                                                                                 -Atlantic Regional Director, Architecture49 Inc.

Key Points

  • Long-span structural steel roof joists designed to accommodate large open spaces
  • Challenging design scope and detail level for various design features within building
  • Structural steel composite mezzanine slabs supported on load-bearing masonry and structural steel girder beams
  • Structural steel girt & column system to support curtain glazing design
  • Meticulous coordination required with many stakeholders for successful completion