New symbol for an old city

Then-and-now Jan Feb 2014 coverMajor Ottawa project, from the ground up

The new Ottawa Convention Centre (pictured on cover) was built on top of the old Ottawa Congress Centre, not only to replace an outdated building, but to serve as a symbol for Canada’s capital. Vincent Lamont is president of Jacques Lamont Ltd., the company responsible for installing all the flooring in this state-of-the-art facility.

According to Lamont, “I was actually very proud to have been approached to do this project — without tender. I had done many large projects in the Ottawa area, including the NHL arena and the airport. But never before had I been asked to help build something that people would recognize the world over. It was quite a project.”

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A self-leveling cement-based underlayment was used during the early stages of the project.

What stood out for Lamont during this large-scale and multi-faceted flooring installation was the collaborative process used throughout. He says, “The design team was great. Everybody was great. A project works much better if the designers rely heavily on the expertise of the flooring people involved. That definitely happened here.”

One area where this collaboration was very evident was in the selection of the Convention Centre’s primary carpet tiles. Lamont says, “So, they come to me and say this location was originally a launching point for logs to be sent by water to Kingston. So, if you look at the carpet, it mimics floating logs. It’s an amazing feeling having helped in the final selection of that very distinctive flooring product.”

Another distinctive flooring feature in the building is the under-floor heating system used on the ground floor, which helps warm the open space leading up to the other levels of the centre. The liquid running through the heating pipes is glycol, which is an anti-freeze solution. Says Lamont, “It’s just another thing that makes this building so unique.”

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According to Vincent Lamont, president of Jaques Lamont Ltd., about 270,000 square feet of carpet tile was installed (above), 50,000 square feet of resilient flooring, and 50,000 square feet of porcelain and ceramic tile.

Lamont adds, “When I have grandchildren some day, I want to be able to point to the Ottawa Convention Centre and say I had something to do with its creation. I think it’s one of the proudest achievements of my career.”

Project submitted by Mapei

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