98 Sioux Road Sherwood Park, AB T8A 3X5
P: +1.780.467.1543 | F: +1.780.467.3301


The Engineer's Conundrum

Success Story

The Challenge

Build a 5,762 square foot estate home atop a poorly drained site full of peat, with extreme grade drops while not disturbing the natural flow of water around and through the existing site. 

And the Resolution

  • Move, shift and haul approximately 60,000 cubic feet of clay till to re-grade the site.
  • Since the basement floor slab was sitting among fill material, the build site consisted of engineered soils, compacted and tested in 6” lifts.
  • 112 pilings were drilled to support the various footings and grade beams to limit foundation movement.
  • Trench a 560ft creek that enabled the home site to drain freely. The dry creek then allows for the storage of excess water when needed and trickles out the property as needed.

The Challenge

Place a 1,040 U.S. Gallon Koi pond in the middle of the foyer floor. This presented a diverse set of obstacles such as, waterproofing, strengthening the wood framed floor, and circulating the water effectively to create a healthy living environment for the fish. In addition to this, the floor trusses needed to be made of an open web to allow for electrical, plumbing and heating runs to pass through underneath.

And the Resolution


  • Multiple coats of a waterproofing and crack isolation membrane and meticulous detail on the flashing of corners, along with multiple test runs proved the indoor pond to be leak free, even when full of the estimated 8,600 pounds of water.
  • Custom built open web girders, and a torsion box pond bottom proved to be the answer for supporting the load. Even with this large weight load, the 16” deep trusses met a deflection of L/720 which is double that of code requirements.

The Challenge

Dual Pitch Timber Frame Hip RoofA structural dual pitch timber frame hip roof. This style of roof presented a unique challenge in that much of the load needed to be transferred to a singular timber truss. All fasteners were hidden from sight as was the wire chase for the center mounted light fixture.


And The Resolution

RoofDaizen Joinery was contracted to machine the frame on their CNC and import kiln dried logs off the coast of British Columbia.

Streamline Design, another BC based company that specializes in timber frame design, provided drafting services for the roof.

Salvi finished the timber beams with a stain and two component post catalyzed polyurethane finish, prior to assembling the structure on site.

The timbers were mortised and then joined with tie rods, before being placed with a crane. The top of the timber roof was drywalled while it was on the ground, which is atypical for framing. Nonetheless, this reduced seams, created an air tight seal to the SIP panel above and made for an excellent finished product!


The Challenge

A 16 rise, Wenge and Cumaru, floating, curved, mono stringer, open riser staircase with integral landing. More than one local contractor looked at the job and claimed it was impossible to build such a large staircase without supporting posts.

Staircase Underneath Staircase Picture 2

And the Resolution

  • An oversized bent laminated center beam with custom fabricated metal plates and brackets which replaces the subfloor in a few sections where it bolts directly into the floor trusses to help disperse the loads.

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