About the Project
The Deltaport Truck Staging Facility (DTSF) forms part of the Deltaport Terminal Road and Rail Improvement Program (DTRRIP). The program seeks to quadruple the annual shipping capacity at Roberts Bank, a hub connecting the Lower Mainland to international supply chains.
The primary project goal was to design and construct a partially automated truck staging facility to mitigate the impacts of the additional capacity on the road network servicing the Deltaport terminal. Surrounded by the Agricultural Land Reserve (ALR), the project especially needed to minimize environmental impacts. With the site’s proximity to local farmlands, cycling routes and wetland habitats, the volume of idling engines raised ecological and community concerns.
Location, budget and timing posed additional constraints. This was seen when the preselected location set the project between ramps of active traffic in a busy interchange—a location posing unique logistical challenges. Budget also dictated timing. ISL organized the project into phases to align with the funding timing, as funds arrived from the three separate government branches.
Environmental considerations had to be taken into account, including soil settlement and protections for a frog breeding area and active eagle nest. To deal with the soft soil, advanced works preloading was employed for both primary and secondary settlement and the existing bridge abutment was strengthened with a shotcrete retaining wall. The frog breeding area was relocated nearby, and construction occurred around the eagle’s nesting schedule.
The COVID-19 pandemic provided additional challenges to be met, as policies were implemented to protect all involved from the virus’ spread. The pandemic directly affected the supply chain, which in turn threatened the project’s schedule.
Through technical excellence, creative thinking and strong communication with all parties, ISL delivered the DTSF both on time and on budget.
As the prime consultant, ISL led a multidisciplinary team in planning, delivering the preliminary and detailed design, tendering, contract administration, construction and field inspection services. Disciplines and expertise spanned agrology, archaeology, drainage and utilities design and support, conservation ecology, electrical, geotechnical, highways and rural transportation, legal surveys, road safety, structural engineering, topographic surveys and traffic engineering and operations.
The team mitigated design issues by prioritizing environmental stewardship principles and delivering creative solutions to satisfy a wide range of stakeholders. In the planning phase, ISL led several workshops with the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (VFPA) staff and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI) to identify project issues, constraints, objectives and risks. These risks included habitat considerations, soft soils, a busy interchange, and the global pandemic.
Phasing the project to match funding from multiple branches of government, the team coordinated advanced work, preloading soil to maintain timelines. ISL stabilized the project site with a retaining wall, environmentally responsible drainage solutions and seismic ground improvements. Construction schedules and relocation accommodated wildlife habitat concerns. The team reconfigured highway ramps and added facility features, like partial automation, entry and exit gates, lighting and digital message signs.
The team delivered the Deltaport Truck Staging Facility (DTSF) using environmentally and culturally responsible, seismically stable, site appropriate solutions. The DTSF allows 145 container trucks with room for early arrivals and adds numerous safety improvements to a key shipping route. Key features include improved route access and a partially automated facility. The overall result improves community safety, as well as ensuring efficient and reliable access to international markets.