Opus Stewart Weir, established in 1944, was a geomatics, civil engineering and environment consulting company with a long history conducting land surveys in the province of Alberta. Along with civil engineering projects, Opus Stewart Weir supervised road construction, road maintenance, surveys of utility and surveys of pipeline corridors.
The company was founded by Ontario born Alexander George (A.G.) Stewart, who arrived in Western Canada after receiving a Dominion Land Surveyor Commission in 1911, and an Alberta Land Surveyor Commission in 1912. Stewart worked as a surveyor in Western Canada until he began his private company out of the basement of his Edmonton home in 1944. The oil boom of the 1950s resulted in a pressing need for surveyors, which prompted Earl Little and John Stewart (A.G. Stewart’s son) to join as partners in 1951. Charlie Weir joined as partner the following year, changing the name of the company to Stewart Little Stewart & Weir in 1952.
Throughout the 1960s, the company embraced several new partners as well as the developments of the computer age. They became the first company in the province to integrate computerized survey techniques. This new technology lead to them working on a number of projects such as the Athabasca Tar Sands Corridor Study, Dickson Dam, and the Edmonton & Calgary Transportation Utility Corridors. In 1980, the federal government introduced the National Energy Program (NEP), which increased taxes on the oil industry and a cap on oil prices. This lead to the company’s decision to lay off approximately half of its staff and survey crews between the years of 1980-82. During this time, they obtained a permit to operate as a Surveyor’s corporation under the name Stewart Weir & Co. and acquired USW Gamma Industrial Services Ltd. as their first subsidiary.
Technological advances in the field lead to a number of developments for the company in the early 2000s. They expanded their services from land surveying and engineering to include industrial engineering, geographical information systems, and environmental services. During this time, they also began to open offices outside of Alberta, including an office in Fort St. John, British Columbia (2009) and Brisbane, Australia (2011).
In 2013, Opus International Consultants, the international engineering, architecture, and infrastructure consulting company based out of New Zealand, acquired Stewart Weir – changing the name of the company to Opus Stewart Weir. Opus Stewart Weir was then acquired by Montreal based engineering consulting firm WSP Global Inc. in 2017. The company is now owed as a principal subsidiary in WSP’s Canada jurisdiction, and holds 49.9% of voting securities in the corporation.