October 7, 2016
August 17, 2016
Larry Luke, Sundt’s Area Manager for its new Salt Lake City office.
Larry Luke is serving as Area Manager for the new office and is responsible for forming partnerships with clients and subcontractors in the region. It’s an important market. Sixty percent of Utah’s population live in the Salt Lake Valley and the state’s population is estimated to increase 19 percent by 2020, from 2.77 million to 3.31 million.
Larry recently spent a few minutes talking about our expanded presence in Northern Utah and our many qualifications and innovative approaches to project delivery.
What are Utah’s strengths as a market?
Utah has a growing economy and population that has created a steady need for new infrastructure in the areas in which Sundt operates (Transportation, Industrial and Building). Utah has a healthy economy, balanced state budget and the ability to either self-fund projects or obtain either federal or private-market funding. The owners are not only programming and funding new construction projects but they also have a reputation for treating contractors fairly and believe in partnering. Public market owners, such as Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT), Utah Transit Authority and counties and cities, and private markets have projects that are either in the planning phase, design phase or already scheduled to be advertised.
From a personnel perspective, Salt Lake City is an area where many people want to live due to the proximity to recreational opportunities, strong family atmosphere and relatively low cost of living.
Sundt participates in joint ventures on many of its projects. What kind of expertise would we bring to JVs in the Salt Lake market?
Sundt is known in our industry for being not only a long-standing reputable company with a strong balance sheet, but also one with excellent experience on a variety of different projects. Through our people, we are also known for being an innovator and leader in Construction Manager General Contractor (CMGC), and use of technology for 3D modeling, virtual design and construction, use of automated machine control, parametric estimating, and design-build value engineering. Owners like UDOT have been on the forefront of CMGC projects, design-build, accelerated bridge construction and intelligent design and construction (IDC). We believe Sundt’s strengths in these areas will make us stand out and be able to offer joint-venture partners and owners a value that is unique from other local contractors.
What are Sundt’s strategies for developing good subcontractor relationships there?
Like any other local market, it is important to have personal relationships with our subcontractors and suppliers and show them that Sundt will treat them fairly, pay timely, honor fair bidding and price-evaluation practices and include them as partners in the project planning.
What trends do you see in the Salt Lake market?
I think we will continue to see an emphasis on value-based selections such as CMGC and design-build, especially for projects greater than $75 million. UDOT is interested in developing its IDC process and evolving the design and contractors into utilizing 3D electronic design files to replace paper plan sheets as legal construction documents. I think we will also see more opportunities that involve a combination of Transportation, Industrial or Building. For example, the upcoming Salt Lake prison or Utah Transit Authority Mountain Accord project, development of ski resort expansion projects or local cities’ needs for water improvement projects.
July 4, 2016
The Big Room includes representatives from Sundt, DPR Construction, Banner, the architect, engineers and key trade contractors.
Communication is vital to the success of any project. Our joint venture with DPR Construction working on the Banner-University Medical Center Tucson expansion is using a “Big Room” concept that brings together project partners on site to facilitate a collaborative environment and deliver quicker solutions to issues.
An effective Big Room supports collaborative behavior. It’s flexible, practical and has visual information. It adds value and lowers the overall project cost because everyone is working together.
The JV team is joined in the Big Room, which is located in the main hospital building with windows facing the construction site, by representatives from Banner, the architect, engineers and key trade contractors. Most of the week, the room has several dozen people and the crowd is growing as work picks up.
“The biggest advantage is the design team gets instantaneous construction feedback as we work through the preliminary design-build set,” said Sundt Project Manager Jeremy Kwapich. “We’re trying to identify smart engineering concepts to reduce costs.”
For example, the team uses large-format paper hanging on the wall to document milestone decisions on a timeline, including cost savings and potential challenges to the budget.
“It allows us to look at one document,” Jeremy said. “It provides an explanation of options and gives the owner a history of why we made decisions on the job at key milestones.”
June 1, 2016
Project team members celebrate topping-out of the New Mexico State Veterans’ Home Alzheimer’s and Skilled Nursing Facility.
Sundt and New Mexico Veterans’ Home officials celebrated the topping out of the hospital’s new Alzheimer’s and Skilled Nursing facility last week in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
More than 100 people attended the event commemorating the last major milestone before construction is complete in early 2017.
The State of New Mexico selected us as the general contractor for the $23.5 million project, which includes the construction of an 86,000-square-foot residential development featuring a 39-bed special care Alzheimer’s unit and a 20-bed skilled nursing section for residents requiring physical rehabilitation or higher levels of nursing care. The facility also will feature a therapy pool piped with natural healing waters from the hot springs of New Mexico.
We broke ground on the healthcare construction project last year after more than eight years of planning by the city and State of New Mexico. Once completed, the facility will serve more than 70 percent of the existing clients at the New Mexico State Veterans’ Home and is expected to receive LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
A veteran signs the final beam before it’s lifted to the top of the building.
May 26, 2016
Sacramento State’s Science II Building will have teaching and research labs, an observatory and planetarium.
Sundt’s first project at Sacramento State University is going to be unlike anything on campus.
The university’s Science II Building will be a modern five-story laboratory facility that will centralize the College of Natural Science’s Biology and Chemistry departments. In addition to providing state-of-the-art teaching and research labs, the 94,000-square-foot building will include an observatory and planetarium.
“These features will support a physics and astronomy curriculum, but also be open to the community for events,” said Project Director Tim Blood. “It’s a great way to involve the community in the science and research taking place at Sac State. I can’t wait to take my kids to a building our company built to learn more about the beauty and complexity of our universe.”
The total project cost is expected to be around $91 million. Construction is scheduled to start next summer and be complete by spring 2019.
“Sacramento State has historically used the design-bid-build delivery method for major projects on their campus,” Tim said. “The fact that they’ve trusted Sundt as a design-builder to deliver their most important project in decades speaks volumes to our company’s history, our relationship with CO Architects, our chosen architectural partner, and our local team.”
It’s our first work at Sacramento State and fifth collaborative design-build project for the California State University System.
“We’ve had a lot of success with CSU, and that speaks to us doing many things well,” Tim said. “First, we have a culture of integrity. No project is perfect, but we consistently work collaboratively, do the right thing, and focus on solutions not problems. We also know the CSU processes and procedures well, which enables us to help them navigate those waters predictably. Finally, I’ve heard variations of this statement a lot lately: ‘It appears that you actually care about the client and their project,’ which surprises me. Doesn’t everyone? But we do, and it’s nice that our clients recognize that fact.”
Sacramento State’s campus master plan for the next 20 years includes a new events center, renovating its existing Science Building, classroom buildings and Grand Central Quad, a centralized gathering place for students.
“I hope this will be the first of many projects to come at Sac State,” Tim said.
One of the most significant healthcare projects in Southern Arizona history was celebrated Thursday when groundbreaking took place at Banner-University Medical Center Tucson on the University of Arizona campus.
UA President Ann Weaver Hart and Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild were among the presenters at the event.
Rendering courtesy of Shepley Bulfinch.
A Sundt joint venture with DPR Construction will build the nine-story, 670,000-square-foot facility. The new tower replaces one that has been used for more than 40 years.
When the new tower opens in spring 2019, it will include:
- A main entry, cafeteria and support departments on the first floor.
- Diagnostic imaging, diagnostic cardiology, cardiac cath labs and interventional radiology on the second floor.
- Operating rooms and patient prep/recovery space on the third floor.
- 204 patient rooms in floors five through nine.
- Shelled space on the ninth floor for 24 more patient rooms.
More than $50 million in new patient care equipment and computers are being added for state-of-the-art care.
Banner-UMC Tucson plays an important role in the health of Southern Arizona residents and visitors; it’s the only Level 1 Trauma Center in the region.
Updates and a webcam can be found on the project website.