Did you know that Garaga garage door panels are so well made, so airtight and so well insulated that in 1991 Hydro-Quebec purchased them for $2.5 million?
Why is Garaga so proud to have contributed to this national gem?
What is Manic-5?
● A power plant
● A spillway outlet building
● Surge tanks
● The Daniel-Johnson dam
● For a total area of 37,432 km2 (14453 sq. mi.)
● Located on the North Shore, 212 km (132 mi.) from the mouth of the Manicouagan River
Located 882 km (548 mi.) from Montreal, 625 km (388 mi.) from Quebec City and 212 km (132 mi.) from Baie-Comeau, this huge construction project in a forest of giants was completed in only 12 years, thanks to the efforts and enthusiasm of more than 12,000 workers.
But why was such a far location chosen? Because of the Manicouagan Reservoir. Created from the impact of an asteroid that fell from the sky 214 million years ago, the Manicouagan reservoir contains 140 BILLION cubic meters (31.78 billion gallons) of water!!! In fact, it is the largest freshwater reservoir in the world!
Harnessing this immense electrical energy potential was therefore more than wise. In 2021, when the need to find alternatives to fossil fuels is increasingly felt all over the world, we can only salute the visionary side of these builders who believed in the project and started working on it in 1959.
The Daniel-Johnson dam of Manic-5, an engineering masterpiece and an international pride!
Even today, it is the largest and highest arch and buttress dam in the world! It produces clean energy for all of Quebec and its neighbors.
Its construction required so much concrete that a concrete plant was built on site. A quarry on the site produced the aggregates needed to feed the plant.
Just imagine! If we used the same amount of concrete as the Manic-5 dam, we could build a sidewalk that would connect the North Pole to the South Pole. A sidewalk more than 20,000 km (12427 mi.) long!
An arch of the Manic-5 dam, a giant among giants! Photo credit: Martin Tremblay, La Presse Archives
The Manic-5 dam is so enormous that its main arch alone could contain the entire 1 Place Ville Marie in Montreal - a 47-storey building with a height of 617 feet!!
Place Ville-Marie, Photo credit: Stephan Poulin
In 2019, a French Radio Canada article (Ici Grand Montréal) explained with some mind-blowing figures how Place Ville-Marie is a city within a city, with:
● 10,000 people working there every day
● 20 million visitors per year
● 52 postal codes
● 33 kilometers (20.5 miles) of an underground network
● Occupants alone generate 521 tons of paper per year, which is recycled, and 360 tons of compostable material
Garaga's panels chosen for Manic-5, a real game-changer in our company's history
Garaga's door panels are installed on the wall of the Manic-5 dam.
In 1990, Garaga's founder Michel Gendreau received a call from an architect working on maintenance and improvement work for the Manic-5 dam. The project included the addition of a thermal reinforcement wall throughout the arches (not the reservoir, of course).
"I grew up during the construction of Manic-5. As a child, I lived the excitement of this project that made all of us proud. When Garaga was awarded the contract for the insulated panels in 1991, our company was only 8 years old. I said to myself, this is where we enter the big leagues!" - Michel Gendreau
Hydro-Quebec had already in hand a proposal from a Florida company specializing in thermal walls and refrigeration buildings. Garaga came up with a bold, innovative, way faster and much less expensive solution.
Hats off to the agility and ingenuity of our production team!
The engineers and architects of Hydro-Quebec were a bit worried. They thought that Garaga was not yet a big enough company to get such a major order. They were afraid that we would not be able to deliver quality products or meet the deadlines.
To reassure them and to increase the production rate and quality control, the production team - including engineer Daniel Gauvin, a pillar of Garaga who is now our director of operations - set up different processes to standardize our production methods.
These methods and processes enabled Garaga to be the 1st garage door manufacturer in North America to obtain the ISO-9001 standard.
They also allowed us to deliver all Garaga's panels to Manic-5 on time and within the promised quality standards, even though the project took place from July to October, our peak season.
In all, we delivered 42 km (26 mi.) of door panels!
The Garaga garage door panels are installed with a crane.
Workers operate in aerial lifts to complete the installation of Garaga garage door panels.
A portion of one of the Manic-5 dam arches now protected by Garaga garage door panels.
Succeeding with this ambitious project took us further, faster!
In 2021, Garaga now has more than 350 employees in its 3 plants in Barrie ON, St-Georges QC, and Ponca City OK, all with the same passion that drives us. Growing with our team and our customers. Providing high quality and fashionable garage doors. Using the most advanced technologies to stay ahead of the game.
Together, everything is possible!
If you want to know more about Garaga, this is the place.
Do you find this story inspiring?
We have many others! Garaga is in great shape financially and we are on the move! We need all kinds of passionate players to join our team.
Discover all our job opportunities and take your career to the next level with us.
Well, that's it! We hope you've been inspired to visit Manic-5! A once in a lifetime scenery!
Visit this Hydro-Quebec website, where we found a lot of interesting information to learn more about facility tours.
In the meantime, take a look at the dam in virtual reality.
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