Corbec Inc. selected WalterFedy to design its fourth Canadian manufacturing facility in Hamilton, Ontario, to meet the growing demand for hot-dip galvanizing services in central Canada. The project’s scope included the design of a roof-hung automated material handling and hot-dip galvanizing process, which required a 15-meter clearing with two 23-meter long-span open bays that ran nearly the entire building length. The building was to be entirely free of interior lines of lateral support to allow for clear crane access from end to end. Our team designed a steel-framed structural system as an economical solution to meet the project’s challenging requirements.
The building’s façade consists of insulated metal panels in contrasting colours, all supported by structural steel girts and sag rods. The process equipment inside the building required numerous access points for maintenance at the roof level, which required several roof-suspended steel maintenance platforms, catwalks, and service stairs. The entrance canopy to the plant office was designed with two steel columns and a steel roof, all hot dip galvanized.
The equipment in this plant is fully automated to improve plant safety and increase production capacity. It has a pre-treatment booth with an air scrubber and filtration and a reinforced concrete pre-treatment tank for added safety. Most galvanizing plants in Ontario use Open Vat dipping tanks, which means the chemicals used in the preparation of steel are exposed to workers through the dipping process. The pre-treatment room used in this building is contained and automated, eliminating the occupants’ exposure to harmful chemicals. The implementation of this system not only improves safety of workers but also extends the life of the building.
Once galvanized, the finished products are often stored outside, which can result in zinc flakes being deposited on the exterior asphalt. A zinc capture system has been incorporated into the stormwater management system to combat this potential environmental risk. The stormwater collected from the asphalt areas is directed to a settlement and filter tank that removes the captured zinc from the discharge. Corbec’s focus on employee health and sustainability protects our communities today and for generations to come.