Safe and Sustainable Structures

Resolving environmental and geotechnical challenges for new and existing buildings

Good building design ensures the most effective use of a site and limits impacts on the local environment during and after construction. It also ensures the building is safe and long-lasting.

We help remove ground contaminants before construction, and work with design teams and contractors to resolve design challenges related to materials selection and geotechnical conditions. Our work includes designing foundations, providing shoring and underpinning solutions to protect nearby structures, and mitigating risks associated with ground movements.

We also support existing buildings by testing indoor air quality and monitoring for hazardous building materials.

Our experience includes new buildings and building additions. We work for brownfield and greenfield developers, educational institutions, commercial builders, residential developers, and more.

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MacEwan University


In 1991, Grant MacEwan Community College (today it’s MacEwan University) began building their downtown Edmonton campus where the Canadian National Railway yards used to be. As of 2022, the campus includes 10 buildings and a parkade. Thurber has been providing a full slate of environmental, geotechnical, and materials testing services to the City Centre Campus since the earliest investigations. Our work has included historical reviews of the site (Phase I Environmental Site Assessments) , environmental drilling and sampling, remediation, risk management planning, hazardous building materials assessments, and radon measurements. We’ve provided geotechnical investigation work for new buildings, including drilling and laboratory testing to assist with foundation design. Our materials testing and construction monitoring services have been used when translating designs into built reality.