November 16, 2011
October 6, 2011
Sutter Hall at California State University, Chico
Like many Sundt projects, the original design of the Sutter Hall dormitory at California State University, Chico had green building practices at the forefront. Prior to starting construction on the building, owners and project partners believed that the 111,000-square-foot complex would meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s standards for LEED Silver certification. However, everyone was beyond thrilled when Sutter Hall, which opened in late 2010, was recently awarded Gold certification, the second highest level of green building certifications.
The $60 million Sutter Hall complex combines student housing, residential dining and programming centers. Although the project was well positioned during design and preconstruction phases to achieve LEED silver, the team met regularly to review the project’s status and seek out any potential opportunities for additional eco-friendly features. Such opportunities arose, including the option to utilize natural light for daylighting and to increase the facility’s performance through the use of recycled content and regionally based building materials. Such diligence allowed the project team to seize opportunities and capture the three additional LEED certification points identified prior to construction. The final point – which bumped the project from Silver to Gold – came as a result of Sundt’s green building experience, allowing the team to identify a Credit Interpretation Request to capture the point for Brownfield Redevelopment.
We offer our congratulations to the CSUC Sutter Hall project team for its teamwork and ability to find and seize opportunities! Here’s to going gold!
September 28, 2011
Sundt’s recently completed project for the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) underscores why student housing has become one of the company’s areas of specialty. The $26.6 million Muir College Apartments are two, nine-story structures that were built in less than 21 months on a tight, densely populated site with very little room for equipment setting, storage, or delivery of materials. The project team contended with close proximity to existing residences and academic buildings, and a very busy dining operation within footsteps of the construction site. They also dealt with frequent rains, as well as vehicle and pedestrian traffic on a road that bisected their work area. Despite these challenges, the project was finished on time and within budget, and it is expected to exceed the owner’s original LEED Silver goal by achieving LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
One of the keys to the project’s success? Building Information Modeling (BIM). Heavy rains early in the project caused flooding and delays during excavation. Using BIM, the team made up the time later in the schedule by re-sequencing certain activities and adjusting timeframes allotted for tasks where possible.
“BIM played a significant role in the schedule and making things go smoothly overall,” said Project Manager Jamie Frye. “For example, there were many utilities in the concrete decks, so the subcontractors utilized data from BIM for their surveying equipment to locate all of their insert points in the decks. It was much quicker than if they had laid out everything by hand from grid lines. BIM probably cut that part of the project schedule in half.”
The cast-in-place concrete buildings can accommodate up to 275 students from the university’s Muir College in an apartment-style living environment. This was Sundt’s second student housing project for UCSD. The first, called One Miramar Street, was an 800 bed/800 parking space complex for single graduate students. It was completed in 2007.
August 5, 2011
Autumn has ushered in (slightly) cooler weather and sweep of awards for our team. On Saturday, Sept. 17, several Sundt Construction employees attended the Valley Forward Association’s annual Environmental Excellence Awards (EEA) ceremony at The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa. Attendees left with more than a tasty meal in their stomachs – but also the Crescordia Award for its Chandler City Hall project, a green building project that has been submitted for LEED Gold certification with the U.S. Green Building Council. The EEA is Arizona’s oldest and most prestigious competition focusing exclusively on environmental initiatives. The Crescordia is the top prize given by Valley Forward each year, and a full release about Chandler City Hall’s Crescordia award appears on the City of Chandler website.
As part of its “Best Projects 2011″ accolades, ENR Southwest (formerly Southwest Contractor) also gave a tip of the hat to Chandler City Hall, naming it the winner in its category for Best Project Government/Public Building Project and one of three finalists for the Best Overall Project (winner to be announced later this fall). Sundt’s new Tucson headquarters – which employees settled into in March 2011- also made the grade, topping the category for Best Office Project.
Additionally, Sundt received recognition at the Arizona Corporate Excellence Awards, hosted by the Phoenix Business Journal at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts on Tuesday, Sept. 20. Sundt was noted as the 6th largest privately held company based in Arizona, as well as the state’s 15th fastest growing privately held company.
Left to right: Mark Roddy of SmithGroup; Rick Heumann of Chandler City Council; Mike Medici of SmithGroup; Marian Norris, assistant to the City Manager; Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny; Kevin Hartke of Chandler City Council; Jack Sellers of Chandler City Council; Fred Friedl of Sundt Construction; Brian Kearney of Sundt Construction.
Sundt Construction, Inc. welcomes Rick Belanger and Jeff Williamson to the team.
The general contractor hired Jeff Williamson as senior vice president and manager of civil construction projects. In his role, Williamson will lead the heavy civil division to meet its expansion goals, both in terms of work portfolio and presence in new geographic areas.
This is not the first time that Williamson has been part of the Sundt team. In the early 1990s, he served the company for five years as project engineer and construction project manager, respectively. For the past 15 years, Williamson worked at Ames Construction leading Southwest operations. During his tenure, he helped Ames grow its annual volume from $28 million to $242 million.