It’s buyer beware at a North Surrey tower that has recently been brought to light about engineering issues.
As of this week, a second engineer has been disciplined for work on a 35-storey tower that is susceptible to earthquakes and windstorms.
The Engineers and Geoscientists of B.C. (EGBC) have now cited John Zickmantel in the design of a high-rise project at 13325 102A Avenue in North Surrey.
Zickmantel has been fined $10,000 and has been suspended for 30 days after admitting to unprofessional conduct in the design of the tower.
It comes after the same oversight body found questionable engineering by John Bryson brought into question the safety of the large North Surrey tower built in 2013.
Bryson admitted to unprofessional conduct regarding the design of the building and has since resigned his engineering license. He can no longer practice engineering in B.C and had to pay $265,000 in fines and fees.
“In a Consent Order, Mr. Bryson admitted that his structural design for the building, Ultra (13325 102A Ave.) did not comply with B.C. Building Code, to which he certified that it had been designed, in particular with respect to seismic and wind loads” the EGBC found.
“This is a rare but very serious offence, for which we sought the maximum fine available, and ensured that this individual can no longer practise engineering,” states the EGBC found. “We will not hesitate to act in any situation where we believe that our standards are not being upheld.”
Alex Li, a realtor with Royal Pacific Realty, in Vancouver, said he sees no issue with the building at all.
He obtained the minutes from the strata meetings and sees no increases planned for potential buyers.
“I don’t see this as an issue at all,” Li told PulseFM. As a result, he said he isn’t beholden to inform people who come to see units at an open house. From what he saw in the strata minutes, he said there would be no impact on the buyer.
Steven Tarasoff lives on the 17th floor of the building and has heard of the problems.
“I do have lights in the kitchen, and every so often you can see them sway slightly, but my son, who is in construction, says that’s normal for a building,” Tarasoff told PulseFM. “It could be just the draft from the door or the venting.”
He’s unconcerned, noting the building feels pretty solid to him.
“I have no issues with it,” says Tarasoff. “It doesn’t bother me at all.”
Some of the owners might have an issue because of repair costs, he notes.
The 35-storey building is at 13325 102A Avenue and includes 418 units, in addition to 11 free-standing ground oriented townhouses.
The city told Pulse FM it was allowing building strata to work out potential remedies.
Cities rely on the review of professional engineers to make sure buildings are safely built. If and when there is a failure, which is rare, the onus goes to the professional engineer that signed off on the work.