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Shannex Long Term Care Facility

Why Did the Owner Select Tilt-Up?

This facility is an extended care residence (nursing home). The owner wanted a building that would not promote moulds or mildew, would stand up over time and be very thermally efficient. Aesthetics would also be key. 1. Most competitive bid package. 2. Precast manufacturer could not construct panels wide enough to suit the project.

What was the Overall Complexity of the project?

This project has 52,585 SF of wall area and only 24,722 SF of slab that can be used for panel casting. Half of the building footprint has a full basement which not only affected casting space but the ability to erect and reach, and since each wing is 47'-7" wide yet panels were either 24'-7" or 37'-7" tall, casting locations became extremely difficult to decipher.

What was the Project Mission?

A strong, long lasting, thermally efficient building that uses interesting architectural features in order to blend into a residential setting and offer a comfortable residence for long term care clients.

What were the special architectural treatments?

All exterior walls are Tilt-Up load bearing concrete panels. Those with a painted finish are sandwich panels and the remainder are plain panels that were covered on the exterior by insulation and traditional brick. Since the customer wanted a non cavity wall that would not be susceptible to mould and mildew, every panel was troweled to a smooth finish and painted on the interior.

What were the outstanding features?

This impressive structure covers 150,000 SF of floor area featuring three wings, each with an outside veranda, large sitting room and resident rooms. While three stories high for the most part each wing has a 4th floor to serve as mechanical headquarters for the complex. Along with 380 windows, there is partial brick exterior and a large atrium as the entrance.

What special materials were used?

Owens Corning pink core sandwich system.

What additional features or comments should be made?

This building combines 91 sandwich panels with 49 plain panels that were subsequently covered with brick (to blend in with a residential neighborhood in a combination of 2 and 3 storey panels). Due to a basement and the configuration of the 3 wings, 75 panels had to be stacked on other panels. The use of thermal mass and the panel as interior finish not only saved the customer in construction costs but will save operation costs and be worry free in terms of moisture in a cavity wall. Since a typical resident's room is 13'-6" wide with a window in the centre, panels were constructed so that joints would be hidden by partitions and in effect making each room seam-free. Further, as a nursing home, the concrete panels do an excellent job at reducing sound transmission from the outside traffic and weather, this seems to have a calming effect for the residents.

Main banner image for Shannex Long Term Care Facility

Project Location

Halifax, NS B3B 1E3


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Project Images


Project Team (TCA Members)

General Contractor:
J W Lindsay Enterprises Ltd
Concrete Contractor:
Dayton Superior Corporation
Dayton Superior Corporation

Project Specifics

Project Category:
Institutional Buildings
Building Types:
Number of Floors:
Tallest Panel:
37 ft 7 in (11.46 m)
Largest Panel:
597 sq ft (55.5 sq m)
Heaviest Panel:
52,950 lbs (24,018 kg)