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Second engineer loses licence over troubled Langford apartment building

Theodore Sorensen had his registration with Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbia cancelled
A second engineer has lost their licence to practise over structural faults in a Langford apartment building formerly known as Danbrook One. (Black Press Media file photo)

A second engineer behind a troubled Langford apartment building formerly known as Danbrook One has lost their credentials to practise engineering in B.C.

Theodore Sorensen had his registration as an engineer with Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbia cancelled by a consent order dated Dec. 31, 2022 after admitting to the regulator he demonstrated unprofessional conduct in relation to a series of “serious” issues in the building’s structural design. He was registered as the professional responsible for the structural design of the building’s core and seismic elements.

That design was determined not to meet building code requirements, especially those around earthquake resistance. The consent order said he failed to take the time needed to properly prepare the building’s design, failed to design or consider structural seismic elements outside the building’s core, and failed to integrate the building’s core and seismic designs with the overall structure design, which was prepared by Brian McClure, the other engineer on the project to be deregistered.

Sorensen joins McClure as the second engineer involved in the building’s design to have their credentials stripped over problems with the building, which has been remediated and reopened for occupancy under the RidgeView Place name and a new civic address on Claude Road.

READ MORE: Engineer on troubled Langford building unqualified: regulatory body

“As I said last year, registrants must apply the appropriate standards, codes and technical expertise to every single project they work on,” said Heidi Yang, Engineers and Geoscientists BC’s CEO, in a release. “The public must feel confident that their homes are being designed to rigorous standards, and this case was a clear breach of that trust. Now both these individuals are prohibited from working as professional engineers in British Columbia.”

McClure was previously found to have been unqualified to work on the building’s design, having only worked on wood-framed buildings up to five storeys tall, and concrete buildings two storeys tall. McClure was also found to have failed to have sufficient field reviews of the building’s concrete work.

Sorensen was also found to have behaved unprofessionally in having his firm take on the project with McClure as engineer of record, even though he knew McClure was not qualified for the project. He has been fined $25,000 as a contribution toward the regulator’s legal and investigative costs.

Centurion Apartment Properties bought the 90-suite building, Langford’s tallest at 11 storeys, in August 2019 and said previously it was unaware of any structural issues. It quickly filled the building with tenants.

But four months later, the City of Langford revoked the occupancy permit based on recommendations from a new engineering report. Every tenant was required to find other housing.

Centurion said previously it was blindsided by the move.

Unbeknownst to them – and to the tenants of 86 occupied suites – people had been asking questions about the seismic stability of the building since construction began in 2018.

Centurion filed a lawsuit in October 2020 against DB Services, Loco Investments, Sorensen Trilogy Structural Engineering Solutions and the City of Langford seeking compensation for losses and expenses on the basis of negligence from each party. The case has not yet been heard in court.

READ MORE: Engineer behind Langford’s troubled Danbrook One building stripped of licence

READ MORE: Troubled Langford apartment block could see tenants again under new name

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About the Author: Goldstream News Gazette Staff

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