Champion Petfoods is an Alberta-based business and a global leader in pet food innovation.

Installing CFA piles on site.

The project

To expand their geographic reach and increase production, Champion Petfoods proposed the construction of a new production facility and storage warehouse in Alberta. The new facility will house a 350,000 SF (106,680 sq. meters) kitchen to make kibble and freeze-dried foods. Subsurface conditions included loose to dense silty sand, requiring a deep foundations solution to support the new facility.

The challenge

The owner established an aggressive construction schedule to complete the warehouse to meet the planned opening date. In addition, construction was planned for the fall and winter months in Alberta, resulting in heavy snowfall and subzero temperatures while working on site.

The solution

Based on recommendations from the geotechnical engineer, Keller provided an auger cast pile design that would provide the deep foundations needed. A total of 2300 auger cast piles were installed, ranging in depths from 26 ft to 89ft (8m to 27m). With previous experience working in the area, Keller was able to eliminate several piles and reduce the lengths of others, resulting in cost savings to the owner. Heated glycol lines were used to allow for pile installation. Four crews and four rigs were working simultaneously to keep the project on schedule, requiring close coordination on-site and with suppliers.

A high strain dynamic load test and a static load test were performed to ensure piles met the project performance requirements. Keller completed the project on time and with no safety incidents.

Project facts


Champion Petfoods

Keller business unit(s)


Main contractor(s)

Gray Construction