LeMarchant-St.Thomas Elementary School

Architecture49 Inc.
Year Completed:

In collaboration with our partners at Architecture49, BMR served as the lead structural engineer on the 53,000 square foot LeMarchant-St.Thomas Elementary School in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Designed to replace the aging LeMarchant St. Thomas Elementary School, this modernized school is currently nearing completion and will be seeking LEED Gold certification. The three-level facility, intended for grades P-6, includes a gymnasium, library, cafeteria, visual arts space, learning commons, and a unique stage/studio design connecting the gym and cafeteria, among other modern amenities for students and staff.

The building consists of a structural steel frame of varied complexity supported on a reinforced concrete foundation system. For increased energy efficiency, the perimeter foundation walls included full-height cast-in-place rigid insulation within the wall structure. Second, third, and fourth 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. The open-concept interior spaces required long-span open-webbed steel joists be incorporated into the roof design. Laterally, the complex building diaphragms were designed the resist wind and seismic loads through a series of structural steel rod braces, compression struts, and concrete block shearwalls. The large areas of architectural curtain glazing on the exterior envelope were designed to resist wind loads through a series of structural steel girts and wind columns within the wall assemblies.

With the successful completion of the Halifax South Peninsula School, BMR will continue its long track record of being the Atlantic Canadian structural consultant-of-choice for Architects and Contractors alike.

Key Points

  • Long-span structural steel roof joists designed to accommodate large open spaces
  • Fully insulated foundation wall system for increased energy efficiency
  • Challenging design scope and detail level for various design features and amenities within the building. The structural drawings contained upwards of 140 individual construction details
  • 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