A resource for architects: Canadian Precast Concrete Quality Assurance (CPCQA) Certification Program

OTTAWA, July 31, 2019 – The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) encourages members to discover a “stringent” certification program for precast concrete.

The Canadian Precast Concrete Quality Assurance (CPCQA) Certification Program is marketed as a value-added step to ensure as-designed becomes as-built, manage risk, and provide safety and quality assurance. As an independent certifying body, the program is intended to benefit architects, owners, contractors, precast concrete industry, and the Canadian public.

In late 2017, Canada’s two largest precast concrete associations, CPCI and Canadian Concrete Pipe and Precast Association (CCPPA) decided to establish a separate third-party independent body, with strict standards, to certify prestressed and non-prestressed precast concrete manufacturing facilities across Canada.

CPCI and CCPPA saw the strength of combining two recognized plant certification programs, CPCI Certification Program for Structural, Architectural and Specialty Products and Production Processes (CPCI Certification) and the Plant Prequalification Program for Precast Concrete Drainage Products (PPP), into the CPCQA.

It is the only program in North America in which precast manufacturers must meet the requirements of CSA A23.4, including Appendices A and B, together with United States PCI MNL-116 and 117 and CPCQA certification requirements.

Unlike other programs, plants receive separate certifications for their products, instead of a general seal of approval. This measure ensures that every category of precast concrete meets CPCQA standards and prevents the possibility, for example, that a manufacturer certified for architectural wall panels cannot transfer their certification to bridge girders.

The certification process takes at least three months, and after being certified, the plants are visited twice per year, without advance notice, to certify whether they are operating according to CPCQA guidelines. Inspectors then create a detailed report outlining their findings and make recommendations for improvement.

CPCQA it is the only certification program in Canada with an official Quality Assurance Reporting Program and Quality Conflict Resolution Mechanism.

An RAIC representative will sit on the CPCQA Quality Assurance Council.

Currently, the program certifies more than 80 percent of the precast concrete production in Canada.

For more information on the Canadian Precast Concrete Quality Assurance (CPCQA) Certification Program www.precastcertification.ca/en/ or www.precastcertification.ca/fr/