The profession developed during the 19th century from the earlier "Measurer," a specialist tradesman (often a guild member), who prepared standardized schedules for a building project in which all of the construction materials, labour activities and the like were quantified, and against which competing builders could submit priced tenders. Because the tenders were each based on the same schedule of information, they would be easily compared to find the most suitable candidate.
Quantity Surveyors have existed in Europe for a very long time. Yet, in Canada, the occupation is relatively new. While records show that quantity surveyors immigrated to Canada as early as the turn of this century, their time was spent primarily on the Canadian Pacific Railway. After that time, indications are that they either switched professions or adapted to the industry practices of their time.
It was only after the Second World War that Estimators / Quantity Surveyors began to enter Canada in significant numbers. At the start, it was a case of working with the system already in place. Today, with widening acceptance of techniques such as value management, statistical analysis, and so on, the opportunities for Quantity Surveyors and Estimators to influence design and construction continue to broaden.
During the 1950's, the large flow of immigrants to Canada brought with it UK Quantity Surveyors who saw a need for an organization to further the aims of their profession. In February 1959, a number of these Quantity Surveyors were invited to a Founder Members' meeting in Toronto. From this meeting the objectives, rules and regulations of the Canadian Institute of Quantity Surveyors was developed.
CIQS BC is the provincial chapter of the Canadian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (CIQS). Founded in 1959, The CIQS works in cooperation with us and other provincial chapters.
In 1975, the (then) Quantity Surveyors Society of BC (QSSBC) became the first autonomous provincial chapter of the Canadian Institute of Quantity Surveyors. Today, CIQS BC's directors help serve and manage over 300 members, probationers and students to further the study, practice and overall awareness of quantity surveying in British Columbia.