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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Great Wolf Lodge: Re-roofing the largest shingled roof in Canada

Great Wolf Lodge, Niagara Falls remains closed but passersby may be surprised by the activity level at the year-round family waterpark resort. The Lodge is currently upgrading the roof, which holds the title of ‘Largest Shingled Roof in Canada’. The property was first shingled 15 years ago during the original building construction and was designed to look like a giant, little log cabin. The total roof is 250 000 sq. ft., roughly 15 NHL hockey rinks of surface area. Now, 180 000 sq. ft. will be replaced with a Boral Steel roofing system, which has a 50 year lifespan.

Vice President and General Manager, Keith Simmonds added, “The timing of the project was unavoidable. A new roof was due and financial commitments for materials and contractors had already been finalized. Prior to the pandemic shutdown, our operational teams were focused on how to juggle a full occupancy resort with a major construction project. The pandemic certainly eliminated that challenge and we no longer have to be concerned with negative guest impacts. The project is progressing at an efficient pace and will be completed in late October of this year.”

Kevin Martin from Boral Canada Ltd notes, ‘the metal is being applied over top the existing shingles. By installing a metal roof Great Wolf Lodge is eliminating approximately 540,000 lbs of asphalt shingles, nails, underlayments, and other roofing related materials from being sent to a landfill.’ Metal roofs not only have 25-95% recycled content, depending on the material used, but are also 100% recyclable at the end of their life as a roof. In contrast, most shingle tear-off waste ends up as part of the building-related waste stream — up to 20 billion pounds per year.

Keith Simmonds commented, “Keeping our little log-cabin on the Niagara Parkway in a ‘like new’ condition remains a priority. The new roof will be a more crisp and contemporary northwoods Lodge-look. The environmentally friendly aspect and longevity were definite advantages to changing over from asphalt to metal. But, really the decision to switch was not overly difficult. The new roof will be 10-25% more energy efficient, it is far more durable so the maintenance is much less and there were several appealing safety features, like not igniting from a lighting strike.”

Great Wolf Lodge closed on Sunday March 15th and like all businesses in the tourism sector has wrestled with the uncertainty of a re-opening date. Waterparks are listed for Phase 3 provincial opening. August 27th is the current re-opening date and the Lodge plans to operate at a significantly reduced occupancy. Mr. Simmonds adds, ‘our standards for safe play have always been high. These times have given us an opportunity to raise our level of care even higher. Our enhanced approach to staying safe and healthy allows our guests to worry less and once again enjoy time together as a family.”

Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls offers a variety of attractions and amenities such as indoor and outdoor waterparks, themed restaurants, a spa for adults, a separate ‘Scooops Spa’ for kids, a ‘Cub Club’ activity and craft room for kids, MagiQuest live adventure game, arcade, bowling alley, fitness centre and outdoor mini golf and the most recent addition of 15 upscale rustic Timberwolf Cottages. The resort is located at 3950 Victoria Avenue. Reservations can be made by calling toll free 800-605-9653 or for more information, www.greatwolf.com/niagara