An iconic Canadian store in “small town Alberta” gets a liner system to solve a large challenge.

Canadian Tire, a Canadian retail store founded in 1922, was expanding into a new larger facility in Cochrane, Alberta, a small town just northwest of Calgary. The site they found for their new store and service center was in close proximity to a former rail tie production facility that operated from the 1960s to mid-1980s.


Cochrane, AB


  • CGSB Vapor Barrier
  • Nonwoven Geotextiles
  • NuDrain™ Sheet Drains

Project Partners

  • Owner: Canadian Tire
  • Consultant: Curtis Engineering
  • Contractor: Eton West Construction
  • Completion Date: September 2015


Rail ties are commonly soaked in a toxic substance known as Creosote along with other petroleum-based products, and the gases from the contaminated soil were a cause of concern for the client. The engineer, Curtis Engineering, contacted Nilex to help design a system to contain the vapors which would help keep the store’s employees and their customers safe.

The site included 150 penetrations and 50 columns to work around and seal properly to ensure there would be no leaks in the system.


The Soil Gas Barrier System Nilex provided included approximately 100,000 ft2 of 15mil Polyethylene Vapor Barrier, two layers of nonwoven geotextiles above and below the poly liner, and a prefabricated venting/drainage composite with a one-inch core.

The venting layer is made of an impermeable polymeric sheet cuspated under heat and pressure to form a high flow dimpled drainage core. Typically used for water drainage, this engineered and prefabricated venting sheet is also an effective gas/vapor ventilation system, trapping the vapors and venting them out to various four-inch diameter floor pipes.


Nilex worked directly with the engineer to complete the design of the system and to offer suitable products.

Installed first was the Nilex venting/drainage layer, followed by a layer of 6 oz. nonwoven geotextile, a layer of 15mil Poly liner, and then topped off with another 6 oz. nonwoven geotextile layer. The two layers of geotextile “sandwiched” the liner thus creating a protective layer on the top and bottom of the liner to prevent penetrations.

The system took four people approximately two weeks to install.


Compared to other geomembranes such as LLDPE, Nilex’s triple-layer soil gas barrier system provided the client with a more cost-effective solution that not only safely removed the Creosote gases, but also any potential Methane and Radon gasses in the soil.


Nilex is committed to unearthing better results. Whether it’s for a civil, resource or environmental project, we offer the latest engineered and technically superior materials and techniques to save our customers time and money, and minimize the need to move or remove earth, and reduce the need for granular materials.

With over 35 years experience, a long-standing commitment to the environment and highly qualified staff, Nilex delivers the products and technologies that give clients an economic advantage with environmental benefit.