January 10, 2018
December 20, 2017
Our team hung a functional helicopter in the lobby of our project at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical College in Prescott, Arizona.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is a high-flying place. Often referred to as the “Harvard of the Sky,” the school is the world’s largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, with 125 locations worldwide.
We recently completed work on a classroom and laboratory facility on the school’s Prescott, Arizona campus to support the university’s STEM program, which has become equal in numbers to its aeronautical program. The project features a 52,570-square-foot facility that houses classrooms, laboratories and a domed auditorium/planetarium.
In an effort to reflect the university’s aeronautical roots and theme, we were contacted late in the project by the University’s Development team with a question: “What if we hung a functional helicopter in the two-story lobby of the building?”
Our on-site team went to work planning structural support, ways to erect the craft and how to disassemble it, bring it through entry doors and reassemble it in the lobby.
The team worked on structural supports for the final installation as well as temporary means to hoist the helicopter. We worked with Universal Helicopter to disassemble the craft off the shipping truck and transported it through the finished curtain wall systems. We then reassembled and hoisted the craft into position with a slight modification to the tail section support to capture the tilted position of a flight trajectory.
Equally pronounced in the lobby is the propeller donated by Raisbeck Engineering and Hartzell Propellers, which we also installed. It’s impossible to miss the Swept Blade Turbofan prototype. With a look like something out of a sci-fi movie, its performance is just as striking.
The features further engage the aviation community, students, staff and locals in the University’s mission. Keep ’em, flying, Embry-Riddle!
December 18, 2017
Part of our work on the University of Arizona Student Success District is a new entry to the Main Library.
Our 60th project for the University of Arizona will be among our most impactful.
Next year, we are breaking ground on the Student Success District in Tucson. The intent of creating the district is to improve student success through direct connections among student services, academic support and amenities in the heart of campus. The district will bring together student counseling, tutoring, course selection, assistance with their majors, aligning internships, coaching and facilitating job interviews and health and wellness.
“The Student Success District is a big push by the University to engage every student on campus,” said Sundt Project Director David Ollanik. “It’s an effort to engage them and provide resources they need to be successful in their time at the University and prepare them to enter the workforce.”
The work includes:
- renovations to Bear Down Gym;
- a new Student Success Building adjacent to Bear Down;
- renovations and entry addition to the Main Library;
- renovations to the Science-Engineering Library;
- redevelopment of adjacent exterior areas into student-focused outdoor environments;
- new links among the buildings.
The project includes two phases. Phase One will be the new Student Success Building and an addition to and remodeling portions of the Main Library. The Student Success Building will be located on the south side of Bear Down Gym and will house student support services. Phase Two will include renovations to Bear Down as well as improvements to the Science Library and open space between Bear Down and the library buildings.
The Student Success District is all about the future and helping young leaders earn their degrees. Our history with the UA is strong dating back to 1936 when we built the ROTC stables on campus.
“The University of Arizona is our University,” said Sundt Vice President and Regional Director Ian McDowell. “It has been since we moved our company to Tucson in 1929. The people who live and work at Sundt in Tucson have educated their families for nearly a century at this institution, so we are very grateful to be a part of future success on campus.”
November 29, 2017
A welding student works on a project at Central Arizona College.
We’re cementing our relationship with Central Arizona College with donations that will expand training opportunities for construction and concrete technology program students.
To complement our workforce development partnership, we are covering costs to pour 320 cubic yards of concrete for a 142-foot-by-92-foot pad. Students in the heavy equipment operator program will begin leveling and grading the area this spring and construction technology students will build the concrete forms. The pad should be complete by fall 2018.
“This will provide students with valuable hands-on experience that will benefit them in their careers,” said Sundt Craft Instructor Darry Welker.
In another support of the partnership, we donated to the heavy equipment operator program for the purchase of GPS equipment. We also have given tools and supplies to the construction technology program.
“We appreciate all that Sundt is doing to help expand programming and training opportunities for CAC students,” Agriculture and Advanced Technology Division Chair Kristen Benedict said.
We are teaming with CAC and have established our own Center for Craft Excellence to help offset a lack of skilled craft workers needed to build our nation’s projects. An Associated General Contractors of America survey finds that construction companies will be short 2 million craft professionals by the year 2020.
November 8, 2017
The two eight-story towers will house 980 students and a dining facility.
Sundt’s impressive student housing resume in California keeps getting bigger. So do our projects there.
We’re starting work on the Cal Poly Pomona Student Housing Replacement Project. Once complete, the university will have two new eight-story towers that will house 980 students and a 35,000-square-foot dining facility. Both housing towers are structural concrete that we are self-performing, giving us better control of schedule and cost.
This is the largest project for Cal Poly Pomona and the biggest for our California Building Group. We’ve had tremendous success working for the California State University System (Channel Islands, San Jose State, Chico State and San Diego State), University of California System (UC Davis and UC San Diego) and private universities (Western University, University of the Pacific and Pepperdine).
“We were awarded the project because of how well we know student housing in California,” said Project Manager Mary Homan.
The project takes up a little more than 10 acres; the site is 16 acres. Included is a storm drain running between the footprints of the two housing buildings and main water transfer lines running between the dining hall and one housing building.
“It was not only challenging to design around these existing utilities, but it’s challenging to build around, over and under them,” Mary said.
This is the first collaborative design-build project for Cal Poly Pomona and the fourth for us with CSU.
“The collaborative design-build process has been working very well for the team and university,” Mary said. “We’re able to tackle issues as a team rather than working more independently, and the owner is fully engaged in the process, which helps with decisions being made in a timely manner.”
We’re scheduled to go vertical on the student housing next month followed by the dining hall in January. The project is scheduled to be completed in October 2019.
Sundt’s joint-venture work on the University of Arizona Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building in Phoenix trimmed two years off the normal schedule.
Sundt’s work on the Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building in Downtown Phoenix was one of the stars of the show at the recent American Institute of Architects (AIA) Arizona State Conference.
The joint venture with DPR Construction built a 245,000-square-foot high-rise facility where collaborative work in neurosciences, healthcare outcomes, cancer and medicine is expected to lead to groundbreaking discoveries with a direct impact on public health.
The team presented during the lessons learned segment of the conference, detailing how it worked with a fast-track schedule to construct the building in just 30 months. The efforts shaved two years off the schedule for the University of Arizona.
“You told a story that was moving and meaningful to conference attendees,” AIA Board Member and 2018 President Robert Miller said.
Time constraints on design resulted in only six months from the start of programming to shovels in the ground. Construction needed to start well before the design was finished, which meant no room for waste in the design and construction process.
Collaboration between the University and the design and construction teams was essential to maximize work hours. By pricing design concepts on an ongoing basis with an integrated team rather than waiting for a complete set of documents to identify overages all but eliminated re-design. Similarly, a rapid parametric model-based estimating effort allowed the design firm to adjust its model and see the costs of those changes in real time.
To keep pace, design decisions and assumptions were made early on and with limited information, requiring trust among all partners to work through and accept associated risk. Key trade partners were brought on early to help mitigate risks and reduce over-design and re-work.
The facility earned an Engineering News-Record Southwest Best Project Award. It’s part of the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, a city initiative bringing bioresearch and education to downtown. At build-out, the campus is anticipated to generate an annual economic impact of $2.1 billion.