North Surrey Sport and Ice Complex

Type of Building
Community & Recreation
10,219 sq. m.
Francl Architecture Inc., Lark Group
Structural Engineer
Bogdonov Pao Associates Ltd.
Construction Manager
StructureCraft Builders Inc.
Project Owner
City of Surrey
Glue-laminated timber (glulam), Trusses

It was important for us to build an iconic building that the City of Surrey would be proud of. Most arena buildings are built with steel or concrete which look and feel cold, but this project, with its wood roof deck and structural glulam trusses, gives visitors a warmer experience. We were trying to make this more than just an ice arena, and with the switch from a metal to a wood roof deck, we got a better building.

Scott Groves, Manager Civic Facilities, City of Surrey

Project Overview

When the City of Surrey decided to build a new sports and ice complex, the original design for the facility, which houses three sheets of ice and community meeting spaces, included a hybrid timber and steel truss system with an acoustic metal roof deck.

The design-build team saw an opportunity to add value by using wood, so they replaced the metal roof deck with prefabricated wood deck that not only saved money but could be installed more quickly. The wood also provided a warmer finish to the interior of the complex.

Wood Use

By leaving the wood roof structure exposed to the space below, visitors enjoy a uniquely warm experience. Hybrid timber and steel trusses, 43 metres long, form the main roof supports. The king-post trusses were fabricated with a double glue-laminated timber (glulam) top chord, steel rod tension chord and steel web members.

Engineers optimized the truss configuration using parametric software. By considering roof curvature, spacing of the king
posts, depth of the trusses, truss spacing and other variables, they were able to reduce the size of the top chord glulam members while still meeting performance requirements. Doing so reduced the overall weight of the trusses and lowered installation costs.

For ease of shipping, the engineer-builder assembled half trusses, each about 21 metres long. They were trucked to the jobsite, lifted into place and connected in the center with custom steel connections, engineered to meet load requirements. The trusses are supported at each end on concrete shear walls and in some cases, steel columns. Prefabricated wood decking panels were formed using
glulam purlins topped by plywood sheathing. The panels, which ranged from 3 to 4 metres wide and 11 to 16 metres long, were easily lifted into place to rest on the tops of the truss’s glulam top chords. Because the deck panels were pre-assembled, it was a straight-forward, streamlined installation process.

The team also installed a 4-metre-wide band of acoustic treatment on the walls of all three rinks. Doing so allowed for sound management in the active space while leaving the wood roof exposed, giving the complex a warm interior finish.