MakeABridge wins Regional Innovation Award

December 08, 2009

The MAADI Group engineering firm, specializing in aluminum bridges and marine applications, has won Quebec’s prestigious regional Canadian Innovation Award for its MakeABridge pedestrian bridge/walkway system.


December 8, 2009—MONTREAL, CANADA – MAADI Group’s patented MakeABridge® (MAB) technology was chosen from dozens of entries to represent Quebec in the national Innovation Contest in 2010, being held by the Manufacturers and Exporters Canada (CME), in partnership with the National Research Council of Canada.

The 2009 Regional Award for New Technology recognizes innovative excellence in the development and application of new process manufacturing technologies in Canada. IRAP’s ITAs work with SMEs across Canada to increase their innovative and technological capacity. The Innovation Awards showcase engineering and design expertise used to develop and implement new technologies. The CME’s Innovation Awards honour Canadian companies’ technology ideas that create outstanding breakthrough products and applications in a highly competitive marketplace.

“It is a great honour for MAADI Group to represent Quebec in such a prestigious competition that recognizes excellence in practical technology implementation,” said MAADI Group president Alexandre de la Chevrotière, “It would be a great validation of our efforts to win this award at the national level for best technology for our structural aluminum Meccano-style system that requires no welding. The design we have developed allows direct on-site assembly of pedestrian bridges and gateways, and has the potential to revolutionize how such structures are built in Canada and around the world.”

MAADI Group’s MakeABridge design has also won second prize in the “Industrial, Commercial or Institutional” category in the 2009 Contech competition, which rewards Quebec developers, architects, engineers and contractors who develop product innovation or technology involving the design, construction or management of buildings.

MAADI president de la Chevrotière says, “We are very gratified by the recognition of our peers at Contech, and delighted that our MakeABridge product, the culmination of four years of intensive research and development, is now considered to be one of the most promising new innovations in the construction field.”

MakeABridge uses interlocking aluminum extrusion members to build a structurally strong, yet lightweight pedestrian and light vehicle bridge that attaches easily to new or existing structures. MAADI Group’s MAB was recently installed as a penthouse level fire escape during renovation of the historic Dow Brewery building in Montreal, and is the first of many MAB installations worldwide that will apply this groundbreaking structural technology.

The MAB aluminum bridge structure significantly reduces delivery delays encountered in the construction industry and transports easily to remote site locations, reducing transportation costs. The ultra-light MAB is assembled in place with no heavy lifting equipment. The MAB’s weld-free design optimizes the creative and ecological potential of aluminum extrusions, and highlights their aesthetic potential. An integrated RGB Light-Emitting Diode (LED) lighting system is optional, built into the MAB’s top chords and ramp. The LED light system provides users with a safely lit path at night, and accents the footbridge structure with pleasing and energy-efficient illumination.

MakeABridge’s winning design uses eco-friendly aluminum extrusions and cast aluminum tripod nodes. “We are thrilled that our MAB design is garnering industry recognition with these innovation awards,” says de la Chevrotière, “We anticipate that our design will achieve tremendous success in the months ahead. MakeABridge has virtually limitless possibilities in a variety of sustainable indoor and outdoor walkway and skyway applications. We expect increasing demand for MakeABridge as architects and developers plan and build infrastructure in commercial and recreational settings.”

MAB bundled components save time and fuel by loading/unloading quickly on standard semi-trailers, and are easily assembled and installed without specialized labor. The pre-engineered walkway system incorporates customized features with speed and accuracy, adding value at reduced overall cost. Integrated handrails, kick plates, LED lights, non-slip decking, and overhead canopy options are available. The load-bearing weld-free spans reach 45 feet in length on a single span by six feet clear width, supporting 100 pounds per square foot. A smaller length or width allows a much higher distributed load, or a longer span may be designed for fewer payloads in pounds per square foot (psf).

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