La Société canadienne
de géotechnique
The Canadian
Geotechnical Society
La Société canadienne de géotechnique
The Canadian Geotechnical Society
La Société
canadienne de

Projets géotechniques canadiens

The current holdings of this virtual library include:

(2017) 2017 Edition of the Canadian Geotechnical Achievements Project
In 2017, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada and the 70th anniversary of the CGS, the CGS started to compile a list of "Canadian Geotechnical Achievements". These achievements, submitted by CGS members, are either significant projects or other achievements of a geotechnical nature, from any period of Canadian or pre-Canadian history. From the submissions, a CGS review committee selected 29 Canadian Geotechnical Achievements that were highlighted at GeoOttawa 2017 and included below.

Click on the following, to view the summary achievement slides

Click on the following achievements, which are listed in no particular order, to view the individual achievement posters in either English or French

(2016) The 1889 Rock Slide Along Champlain Street in Quebec City
Historical review of the events leading to the 1889 slide, starting with the 1841 slide, and including the 1879 investigation and proposed mitigation measures, which might have prevented the 1889 event, by architect, land surveyor and civil engineer Charles Baillargé. The paper, by Jacques Locat, was presented at the 69th CGS Annual Conference in Vancouver, BC in 2016.

(2015) A Record of Geotechnical Work by Golder Calgary in the 1980s
In this review, both historical and personal, Jack Crooks describes the activities of Golder’s Calgary office during the 1980s, with emphasis on exploration drilling in the Canadian Beaufort Sea. Despite the tough economic times prevalent at the time, their team was able to conduct groundbreaking work in soil mechanics. He highlights the importance of having a good team, determined to learning and advancing the state-of-the-art in geotechnique.

(2007) History of Geotechnique in Canada
44-page power point presentation by Michael Bozozuk at the 60th CGS Annual Conference, Ottawa ON, October 2007. Among other things it contains brief descriptions of "Seven outstanding Canadian Engineering Achievements": 1. Artificial islands in Beaufort Sea, NWT, 2. Gardner Dam, SK, 3. Red River Floodway, MB, 4. CN Tower, ON, 5. St Lawrence Seaway, QC and ON, 6. Peribonka Dam, QC, and 7. Confederation Bridge, PEI and NB.

(2001) Geotechnical Research Site, Gloucester ON
G.C. McRostie and C.B. Crawford, 2001 (Canadian Geotechnical Journal Vol. 38, pages 1134-1141) describe the background and opportunities available at the Canadian Geotechnical Research Site at Gloucester, ON. The paper provides a useful list of references on published site characterization research. This paper has been made available through permission from NRC Research Press.

(1997) Geotechnical Engineering in Canada: an Historical Review
150-page document, which resulted from a series of taped interviews with early contributors to the geotechnical profession in Canada, was published by BiTech Publishers, as a Commemorative Edition of Geotechnical News at the time of the Golden Jubilee 50th CGS Annual Conference in Ottawa 1997. Texts were prepared and edited by Cyril E. Leonoff. Funding to permit publication and distribution to all members of the CGS was raised by the Vancouver Geotechnical Society and generous sponsors listed in the document. In 2009, BiTech Publishers provided funding for scanning this electronic version of the document.

Among other things, this document includes includes short articles about a number of Canadian geotechnical fields and specific projects including: embankment dams, tunnel engineering, permafrost, offshore development, oil sands, surface mining, tailings dams, airphoto interpretation, earthquake engineering, the St. Lawrence Seaway, and the James Bay Hydroelectric Development

(1994) John By, Hero without Honour, the Rideau Canal Story
This 24 minute video tells the story of the master builder of the Rideau Canal and founder of Ottawa, Lt. Colonel John By. The 1994 film features Dr. Robert Legget, who spent many years researching and writing about the history of the Canal and the work of Lt. Colonel By. Legget was 89 when he participated in the making of this film, and died the following year before the film was completed. The film is dedicated to him. The script was prepared by the late Mrs. Josephine MacFadden of Ottawa, and the original video was produced by Lynx Images Inc. of Toronto, with support from The Nation's Capital Television Inc., the Ontario Film Development Corporation, Parks Canada and the National Capital Commission.

A VHS tape version of the film was provided to the CGS Heritage Committee by the late Gordon McRostie. McRostie, a former University of Toronto student of Robert Legget in the 1940s, spearheaded a successful campaign to have a monument erected beside the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, in October 1997, to honour Robert Legget. The unveiling took place during the 50th Canadian Geotechnical Conference.

(1987) Proceedings, Canadian Engineering Centennial Convention, Montreal 18-22 May, 1987
Editors, R.P. Chapuis and D.W. Devenny, published by the Canadian Geotechnical Society. 159-page document includes historical and (1987) state-or-the-art papers by 23 authors related to: the Canadian geotechnical profession, early history (up to 1936), building construction, mining, hydroelectric project, highways, railroads, waste management, nuclear fuel waste, mine waste, petroleum resources development, northern development and the future of the profession.

(1983) Drynoch landslide, British Columbia – A history
Doug VanDine, 1983, (Canadian Geotechnical Journal Vol. 20, pages 82-103). This landslide began moving 3,000-6,000 years ago and is still moving. VanDine tells how this landslide, and attempts to control it, affected the development of the interior of the province from the 1800s to present day.

(1966-1984) There are two Terzaghi Dams in the world
Correspondence between 1966 and 1984, and a 1983 draft manuscript by R.F. Legget, about the fact that there are two dams called the Terzaghi Dam: one in Canada (formerly Mission Dam) and one in Brazil (Vigario Dam). Correspondence includes letters from R. F. Legget, Ruth Terzaghi and Ralph Peck.

(1957) Collapse of the Peace River Bridge, Taylor, British Columbia
In 1957, the north abutment of the Peace River Bridge was caught in a landslide that culminated in the collapse of the approach span and a side span. A short text by Stanley Thomson and David Cruden (University of Alberta) accompanies 14 original photographs of the collapse.

(1952-1992) Projects in Northern Canada
95-photos show early geotechnical activities in Northern Canada from 1952 to 1992. They come from the private collection of Branko Ladanyi, Ecole Polytechnique, Montreal. The photographs were shown by Professor Ladanyi during the 53rd CGS Annual Conference in Montreal in 2000. The photos include: Canadian Permafrost Delegation to China, 1977; Dawson City, Yukon, 1974; Igloolik, NWT 1978; Inuvik, NWT 1977, 1978; Iqaluit, NWT; Kangiqsualujjuak, Nunavik QC; Norris Point, NL; Map of the New World, de Fer, 1702; John Pihlainen, Roger Brown, Hank Johnston; Insulated road test, Dempster Highway, 1972; Drilling test in frozen ground, undated; Hank Johnston digging in frozen ground, 1960; Aklavik survey, undated; NRC-DRB Field Stations, Norman Wells, 1955-56; Inuvik 1957; Raglan, Nunavik QC; Schefferville QC, 1972; Thompson MB, 1971, 1975.

(1928) Landslides in Canada
This paper on "Landslides in Canada" was written by D.A. Nichols and published in the December 1928 issue (Vol XLII, No 9) of "The Canadian Field-Naturalist" (pages 212-220). Used with permission by the Canadian Field-Naturalist.

This may be the first pan-Canadian review of landslides, and includes a bibliography of "most of the important Canadian occurrences" (to 1928), and some photographs. The author, a geology graduate from Queen's University, joined the Geological Survey of Canada as a topographer in 1913. At the start of the 1930s, when finances were tight, Nichols retrained as physiographer, specializing in landforms. (from "Reading the Rocks, History of the GSC 1842-1972" by Morris Zaslow, published by McMillian of Canada, 1975.) He retired from the GSC in 1944. The University of Calgary hosts a D.A. Nichols [Photographic] Collection, and that web page provides further information on Nichols's interesting and varied professional career.

This paper was discovered in the Norwegian Geotechnical Institute's library in 2018 by Past CGS President (and Past NGI Managing Director) Dr. Suzanne Lacasse. The hand-writing on the front of the Canadian Field-Naturalist issue is by Dr. Laurits Bjerrum, the founding Director of NGI in 1953.

(1913-2003) Failure and Righting of the Transcona Grain Elevator, Winnipeg, MB
The grain elevator was designed using a bearing pressure that had been successful in local shallow footings, and failed in 1913 during first filling. It was subsequently righted and became one of the classic case studies used to support the theory of bearing capacity coefficients on clays.