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Trenchless on Display: Second West Coast Trenchless Technology Road Show Grows

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With a commitment to grow the trenchless industry in British Columbia, and Canada as a whole, NASTT-BC and the Centre for the Advancement of Trenchless Technologies (CATT) once again partnered to bring the biennial Trenchless Technology Road Show to Richmond, British Columbia.

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RELATED: NASTT-BC Is an Integral Part of Canada’s Trenchless Growth

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The show, a co-production of Benjamin Media Inc. (publisher of Trenchless Technology Canada), CATT and NASTT-BC, attracted more than 280 attendees from across Canada, as well as the United States.

The 2017 event moved to the Richmond Conference Centre and the Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel. All told, the preeminent western Canada trenchless conference featured nearly 50 exhibitors, live product demos from Mar-Tech Underground Services and Bluelight International and 11 sessions, with a total of 58 technical presentations all proving, once again, that Canada is a leader in the trenchless industry.

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Canada’s role in advancing the trenchless industry was the key message of Dr. Mark Knight’s state of the industry address. Knight, executive director of CATT, noted that Canada is not only a leader in the number of projects taking place, but also in terms of research, technological advancements and methods coming from Canada.

He cited CATT and CETT, as well as companies like Sanexen, Fer-Pal, LiquiForce, Pure Technologies, Ward & Burke and the Tomahawk System from Envirologics, as helping lead the way for the trenchless industry’s continued growth in North America.

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“If you look at the U.S. market, the total market for water main rehab using CIPP is about $35 million,” Knight says. “The City of Toronto has an annual program of about $100 million that’s about three times all of the work done in the United States. For perspective, Australia is doing its first water main CIPP this year as a pilot program. Montreal does about $35 million, so in Canada, two cities are doing $135 million work.”

Knight also called on the utility owners to help continue this trend by building comprehensive improvement programs that include trenchless and not just one-off projects.

RELATED: PW Trenchless Helps British Columbia’s Trenchless Market Grow

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“If you build multi-year programs, the contractor base will gear up to do it,” Knight says. “If you build a project, one every five years, who would gear up to do this? If you find that these technologies — CIPP, microtunnelling, directional drilling — are really the things that you will need over a period of time, call enough work.”

david o'sullivan lifetime achievement

David O’Sullivan receives NASTT-BC’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Following Knight’s overview, Kieran Field, NASTT-BC board president, presented the chapter’s Lifetime Achievement Award to David O’Sullivan, owner of PW Trenchless, for his efforts in growing not only the NASTT-BC chapter, but also his steadfast work with the Carbon Calculator and gaining provincial approval for the Carbon Protocol. The latter is a methodology whereby municipalities can apply for carbon credits for trenchless projects completed.

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The keynote address by Mike Sullivan, executive director of the Canadian Common Ground Alliance (CCGA), focused on the organization’s work to bring about a unified call before you dig legislation for all of Canada. On May 2, 2017, the Senate adopted Bill S229, it now sits with the House of Commons.

For more information on the CCGA’s efforts, visit

Looking Ahead

Missed the 2017 Trenchless Technology Road Show? No need to worry because CATT and Benjamin Media are working on the biennial Ontario event, slated for May 15-17, 2018.

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For 2018, the event moves from Niagara Falls to London, Ontario, and the London Convention Centre. Exhibitor space and sponsorship opportunities are available and the technical session will be announced soon.

Visit for the most up-to-date information.

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Mike Kezdi is associate editor of Trenchless Technology Canada.

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