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A PUBLICATION OF SKENDER CONSTRUCTION ISSUE 006 ยง MARCH 2015

THE VALUE OF IDEAS ERIE FAMILY HEALTH CENTER AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ANESTHESIOLOGISTS MOTOROLA MOBILITY SENIOR LIFESTYLE CORPORATION ELEVATING THE INDUSTRY: HOWARD TULLMAN


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THE VALUE OF IDEAS More and more, value creation is manifested in great ideas and intangible assets.

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10

FINDING THE FAÇADE

STEPPING IT UP

The American Society of

Erie Family Health Center transforms a

CONTRIBUTING AUTHORS:

Anesthesiologists’ new corporate

1950s-era bank into a bright new health

The Value of Ideas written by Pamela Dittmer McKuen

headquarters showcases the brand

center for the community of Waukegan.

ELEVATION ELEVATION is a publication of Skender Construction.

EDITORIAL: Afshan Barshan, Justin Brown, Clayton Edwards, Andrew MacGregor, Brett Opie, Joseph Skender, Mark Skender, Stephanie Sulcer ART DIRECTION: Conjure

Elevating the Industry written by Stephanie Sulcer Mark Skender photo courtesy of ©James John Jetel.

and celebrates the profession.

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MOTO MOVING FORWARD

DOWN TO DETAIL

Motorola Mobility’s move to the

Senior Lifestyle Corporation’s first

Merchandise Mart signifies a milestone

Signature Collection community delivers

for innovation and progress in Chicago.

first-class quality on a fast-paced schedule.

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ELEVATING THE INDUSTRY Howard Tullman explains how 1871 2.0 reflects the evolution of Chicago’s most talked-about tech incubator.


DEAR READER, How do organizations within the building industry create value? A few might say we create value when we reduce costs. There’s some truth to that statement but it’s short-sighted. What we’re finding is there’s utility in ideas. Whether clients ask for it or not, an idea that sheds light on how to maximize dollars or provides a powerful moment of clarity can be perceived as priceless. But it’s rare that one person or a sole organization comes up with a truly great idea. In times of rapid change, high demand and heavy competition, it takes a village. Great ideas happen when a diverse group of people discuss, debate, and negotiate in a quest to get to the heart of the issue. Value creation is really reliant on building an entire system in which ideas flow freely from top to bottom, and the expertise from those who are not traditionally labeled as experts are heard. And while many of us are thinking about how we can increase collaboration among the usual suspects—owners, architects, engineers and general contractors— think about how we will unlock potential when we tap into the knowledge base of our trade partners and suppliers.

Mark Skender Chief Executive Officer, Skender Construction

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VALUE CREATION: IT’S A CONCEPT THAT’S DIFFICULT TO GRASP and EVEN MORE CHALLENGING TO ARTICULATE.

THE VALUE O F IDEAS. MORE AND MORE, TRUE VALUE CREATION IS HIDDEN IN THE INTANGIBLES THAT CAN’T ALWAYS BE MEASURED. IT’S MANIFESTED IN KNOWLEDGE THAT ATTEMPTS TO ADDRESS DIFFICULT ISSUES. IT EXISTS IN RELATIONSHIPS THAT RUN DEEP. IT’S PRESENT IN PEOPLE WHO DON’T ALWAYS CHOOSE THE EASY ROUTE. SOMETIMES, THEY CHOOSE THE LONGER ROAD IN PURSUIT OF THE RIGHT WAY.

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A massive mockup serves as the place to discover the perfect mix of metal and glass.

FINDING THE FAÇADE

MOTO MOVING FORWARD

Motorola Mobility’s move to the Merchandise Mart signifies a milestone for innovation and progress in Chicago.

A former bank becomes a new healthcare institution and anchor in the community.

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14

STEPPING IT UP

10

DOWN TO DETAIL

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Delivering five-star quality on a fast-paced schedule was only possible with precision, process and personal commitment. ELEVATION | 3


FINDING THE

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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

The new headquarters of the American Society of Anesthesiologists is calmly situated among an expanse of office buildings in Schaumburg. But the element of surprise makes this building wildly different than a typical build-to suit: The exterior’s mix of metal and glass is stunning from the outside, while the sophisticated open interior environment invites anyone to explore the fascinating profession. Aesthetics aside, the goal was to celebrate the history of anesthesiology and showcase the association’s brand as a community of contemporary, forward-thinking medical professionals. The organization’s previous Park Ridge location, an assemblage of leased spaces, didn’t have room to bring its members together for events and conferences. And its collection of rare and vintage books, artifacts, equipment and tools—some hundreds of years old—wasn’t readily accessible for viewing. “Our main goal was a stand-alone building that could service all ASA’s needs, but we wanted that ‘wow’ factor, not a plain precast building,” said Randy Bartosh, vice president at Development Resources in Chicago and ASA’s project manager. The result more than doubled ASA’s existing space: A sleek three-story, 77,000-square-foot structure with a glass and steel façade on a wooded site overlooking a lake. Inside, a dramatic atrium with monumental stair is capped with a skylight, clerestory windows and glistening LED lights. Located on the first floor are a 250-seat conference room/auditorium equipped with advanced communications technology, cafeteria, and climate-controlled, moisture-resistant Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology. The upper floors house staff offices. “The grand stair serves as a kind of connective tissue between the membership spaces and the staff spaces,” said architect and project manager Adam Quigley of Tilton, Kelly + Bell Architects in Chicago. Ground was broken on the 12-month project, but several weeks of preplanning assured the job progressed smoothly and on time. It was clear that Building Information Modeling (BIM) would be necessary to lay out the critical systems and infrastructure of the building, and collaborative

AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ANESTHESIOLOGISTS

©John Miller, Hedrich Blessing, Ltd.

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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

schedule planning would ensure that every detail would be covered. But one critical question remained: What materials should clad the building? Glass and metal were givens, but specifically which glass and which metal? How should they be connected to each other and to other building elements? What type of support system is needed to prevent the metal sheets from “oil canning” or buckling? “An architect can have an idea and put it on paper,” said Skender’s project manager Ramiro Trevino. “But you don’t really know what it’s going to look like until you see it in the exact location and how it interacts with the surrounding buildings, the other materials it comes into contact with, and the sun at different times of the day. All those variables need to be taken into account. Other buildings with the same glass won’t always look the same in different locations.”

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“It was very important to get this right,” said Quigley. “Even though it was a stainless steel base with a glass curtain wall, that simplicity demands a high level of engineering precision. Many systems are coming together, and there is no other visual noise to mediate errors. If you have a complicated façade like masonry construction with a lot of ornament, the eye tends to glance past or forgive issues of alignment. But an imperfection on a metal panel can draw attention pretty quickly.” In search of definitive answers, the project team took the unique step of building a nearly full-size, on-site mock-up, 10 feet wide by 30 feet high. Mock-ups are made from time to time, but they usually are much smaller. This one was so large, a building permit and foundation were required. Every element, from foundation to parapet, was replicated.


“ EVEN THOUGH IT WAS A STAINLESS STEEL BASE WITH A GLASS CURTAIN WALL, THAT SIMPLICITY DEMANDS A HIGH LEVEL OF ENGINEERING PRECISION.”

For two months the team tested numerous materials and constructions on the mock-up. They tried different colors of glass and considered zinc, aluminum and stainless steel as well as an assortment of finishes. They looked for signs of deflection and assessed their connections and supports. “One particular type of support system could be OK for stainless steel, but aluminum is more fragile, so your substructure would have to be different,” explained Trevino. The final choices were to clad various sections of the first floor with stainless steel paneling, perforated stainless over glass, and clear storefront glass. The second and third floors were clad with a low e-coated glass. Spandrel glass separates the floors and wraps the mechanical penthouse while a glossy black metal parapet outlines the roof.

“Working within the design parameters and tolerances, stainless steel proved to be the most advantageous option,” said Trevino. “It was more solid and less expensive than the other material options we explored. We were also able to get the materials from the United States, which meant shorter lead times.” “This process helped us determine that the stainless steel needed to be embossed,” said architect Michael Kelly, a TKB principal. “It gives additional rigidity to the material, and it refracts the light more evenly across the panel so that any glare is muted.” Another big decision was how to hang the curtain wall. A time-saving unitized system was employed rather than building a framework, installing glass panels and caulking the seams. The manufacturer, Wausau Window and Wall, pre-fabricated and pre-glazed two-story sections that were delivered to the site and expeditiously set in place via crane.

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THE BUILDING WOULD PERFORM WELL IN THE FUTURE, AND THE EXTERIOR WOULD NOT LOSE ITS ELEGANT FLAIR OVER TIME.

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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

“We were able to limit a lot of our field time by spending more time in the shop,” said Sean Hill, an associate at Elmhurst-based Glass Solutions. “Field labor is a big item in our industry. If you can reduce field labor in any way, you can reduce your costs.” Pre-fabrication translates to a safer jobsite because both the amount of materials and the number of people working with them are lessened, said Trevino. These efficiencies and more wrapped up the new headquarters as promised. They also helped assure the client that the building would perform well in the future, and the exterior would not lose its elegant flair over time. “The curtain wall and skin investigations certainly were value-driven,” said Kelly. “When you do a building that is unique, costs tend to go up. The team worked diligently to make decisions that made sense while making a consistent effort to stay within the budget.” Bartosh agreed. “Even with a tight schedule and all the challenges that took time to get resolved, Skender stepped up to the plate and presented solutions in a great way,” he said. “They bent over backwards and took extra steps to make sure that the building would represent ASA well now and into the future.” ±

CLIENT: AMERICAN SOCIETY OF ANESTHESIOLOGISTS PROJECT MANAGER: DEVELOPMENT RESOURCES, INC. DESIGN ARCHITECT: TILTON, KELLY + BELL ARCHITECTS ARCHITECT OF RECORD: EPSTEIN STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: HALVORSON & PARTNERS MEP/FP ENGINEER: WMA CONSULTING ENGINEERS, LTD. GLAZING CONTRACTOR: GLASS SOLUTIONS, INC.

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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

After an extensive search, Erie Family Health Center settled on the perfect building for a vibrant new community health center in Waukegan: A 1950s-era bank. Completely transforming a former financial institution into a quality medical and dental care facility that would serve 10,000 Lake County residents would be challenging, but the two-story masonry building was right for so many reasons. “Our vision was to meet community health needs as well as plan for future growth,” said Amy Valukas, Erie’s vice president of planning and programs. We needed to be accessible to public transportation, but we also wanted to be on a main thoroughfare in a place that was known, visible, comfortable and safe to the community.” “One of the goals was redefining a strong iconic image—the bank— by converting it into a health care facility that would bring Erie’s brand to life,” said architect Casey Frankiewicz, director of health care at Legat Architects in Waukegan. The new 25,000-square-foot Erie HealthReach Waukegan Health Center would greet its first patients in just 22 weeks. Examination rooms, nurse stations, laboratory, dental and vision suite, urgent care area and community education room with demonstration kitchen would reside on the first and second floors. The lower level would offer a lounge and fitness center for medical providers. The building would also gain new MEP, elevator and fire protection systems. But the building had been expanded multiple times, and no meaningful documents existed. Both the schedule and budget were tight. There was no time or money for mistakes, even when there were questions about what was really behind the walls.

“We gutted the whole interior down to the exterior walls and rebuilt the inside, so there was no time for re-work or confusion. We had to make decisions, over-communicate and hold everyone accountable,” said Skender senior project manager Thomas Schlueter. The team began with a major project: The removal of two large support columns on the second floor to provide more openness and longer sight lines. To compensate, the foundation had to be reinforced to support a huge galvanized beam placed on the roof to carry the new load. “We were working with a building that had a different function and making an open floor plan out of something that previously had a lot of walls required adding tons of structural steel over the roof. Because of time constraints, everyone had to work together,” said Kazem Nemazee, project manager at David Architectural Metals in Chicago. Erie also wanted to retain some of the design elements of the former bank. The most obvious was the dramatic spiral staircase connecting the first and second floors. But the staircase, which needed renovation, didn’t meet current building codes. Even if it did, the triangular-shaped treads were unsafe for those with mobility challenges.

ERIE HEALTHREACH WAUKEGAN HEALTH CENTER

©Connor Steinkamp Photography

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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

“We knew it would cost more to try to bring it up to code than to put in a new stair that met code, so we proposed building an entirely new monumental stair after construction began. We knew a new stair would be safer and its modern look would add more value in the long-term,” said Schlueter. But time was ticking, so the team used a design-assist approach to design and build the stair. This accelerated the process by reducing drawing and approval times. “Legat sketched the concept; then we worked with David Architectural to produce the drawings and help design to a target cost. The traditional approach of drawing, pricing, shop drawings, approvals and fabricating would have delayed the schedule for weeks,” said Schlueter. The result was a new glass and stainless steel staircase extended to the lower level. Also, the front façade was torn out to insert a two-story extensive north-facing glass box that projected out of the building. The glass serves several purposes: It adds an inviting face to the façade and showcases the staircase from outside and inside. It also drenches all three levels with massive amounts of natural light. A small seating area adjacent to the stairs allows patients to wait and watch for their transportation. The bank’s two vaults, however, were incorporated into the overall design. The cash vault on the first floor was turned into a touch-down area for visiting professionals. The safety deposit vault on the lower level became a cozy lounge with a decorated metal wall. Vault doors were removed for safety’s sake and bolted to nearby walls for ornamentation. “Removing the vaults would have been difficult, so we celebrated them,” said Valukas. “They are really beautiful quiet spaces where our providers can be productive, and they are a reminder of the history of what was there before.”

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“ REMOVING THE VAULTS WOULD HAVE BEEN DIFFICULT, SO WE CELEBRATED THEM. THEY ARE REALLY BEAUTIFUL QUIET SPACES.”


While scope changes often play a role in adaptive re-use projects, the team relied on Lean Construction to manage scope changes, hold people accountable and ultimately fast-track the schedule. Trade partners participated in pull planning sessions, used the structural steel for the column removal and the monumental stair as critical paths, and planned backwards to capture every task on paper. The entire building was broken down into areas so the team could prioritize and build a production system. The lookahead schedule tracked all daily tasks and projected constraints that could halt workflow. Although the schedule allowed for 22 weeks of construction, Erie HealthReach Waukegan Health Center was completed two weeks ahead of schedule. “They have a great process of running jobs where they hold everyone accountable,” said Frankiewicz. “This job needed that kind of leadership on the construction end to meet the goal, and they provided it.” “Skender is fantastic,” said Valukas. “There were multiple times that they made suggestions or value-added decisions that ended up having no material change in the outcome of the design but definitely saved us dollars. I don’t think any other general contractor out there could do what they did.”±

OWNER: ERIE FAMILY HEALTH CENTER PROJECT MANAGER: CONOPCO PROJECT MANAGEMENT ARCHITECT: LEGAT ARCHITECTS MEP ENGINEER: GAGE CONSULTING ENGINEERS, INC. STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: LARSON ENGINEERING, INC. STEEL TRADE PARTNER: DAVID ARCHITECTURAL METALS

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MOTO

MOVING FORWARD

MOTOROLA MOBILITY 14 | ELEVATION

©Eric Laignel


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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

It was the largest tenant build-out the city has seen in at least a decade: The Motorola Mobility global headquarters relocation to Chicago’s historic Merchandise Mart. Leasing 600,000 square feet on four floors, Moto’s new space has been likened to a 25-story high-rise turned on its side. But the massive adaptive re-use project constituted much more than fields of offices and workstations: It incorporated seven highly sophisticated research and development mega-laboratories, powerful new rooftop mechanicals, a grand architectural staircase and the services of two helicopters—all in 45 weeks. As home to the renowned international telecommunications company, formerly in suburban Libertyville, the new headquarters spans floors 16 through 19 of the circa 1930 Art Deco landmark building. The labs, which are on the upper three floors, occupy about 80,000 square feet of the interior, and the two structures housing their dedicated mechanical systems cover an additional 50,000 square feet on the rooftop. “The floor plates are so massive, we had to create an interior campus defined by various neighborhoods, paths and nodes, so that the employees could easily navigate through the space,” said Ingrida Martinkus, one of the project architects at Gensler. “The labs are the anchoring elements around which offices, meeting/huddle rooms and open workstations are organized. Corridors wrap and transverse the floors, with micro-kitchens and various ancillary spaces interspersed along the way, allowing for moments of expected, and unexpected collaboration.” Among the most striking design features of the new headquarters are a trailer-sized LED wall and a monumental steel staircase linking the 18th and 19th floors. The staircase offers platform seating for small group meetings at the mezzanine level, and wooden slats enclose it on three sides. Many of the building’s vintage details such as columns and doors are melded into the new architectural elements. Before construction could begin, the work had to be organized into a master schedule. The task was challenging in part because many program details were yet to be determined and, therefore, the schematic drawings were incomplete. So in order to get the ball rolling, the project management team engaged trade partners, asked for their input and brought many disciplines together to stay ahead of the planning process. The lengthy, detailed pre-planning meetings were invaluable, said Martinkus. “Transparency and coordination were key. This allowed the team to identify any and all potential challenges and arrive at solutions before conflicts arose.” “There were literally thousands of items that had to be completed,” said Dan Marijan, Skender senior superintendent and partner at the firm. “We worked backwards, dealing in milestones. We knew the end date, and that couldn’t be changed. Before that, the furniture had to go in. But before that, the carpet had to go in, and before that, the drywall. And so on.”

Multi-story build-outs like this one typically are phased one floor at a time. But because of the complexity of the labs, they had to be started early and simultaneously. Furthermore, they are located on different floors. “Once the real estate was set aside for the labs, it was divide and conquer. The labs were the first and most important task that needed to be programmed because all of the major infrastructure was related and required the most amount of time to coordinate and build out,” said Marijan.“ Once the real estate was locked down, we began our riser and infrastructure work. We phased the project in 50,000-square-foot batches, and we figured we could start four batches at any given time. Two hundred thousand square feet per floor seems overwhelming, but the way we broke it down was very manageable. For much of the duration, the work progressed not sequentially, but on parallel paths. That’s how we got it done in 45 weeks.” Skender also took the innovative step of forming teams according to discipline: Separate superintendents and project managers were assigned for the labs, mechanical systems and LEED. “When specific questions arose, they were directed to that team,” said Marijan. “It became a very fluid process.” While Motorola was tweaking its program, the project team moved ahead with the infrastructure. The existing systems, according to Andrew Lehrer, ESD vice president, project manager and one of the lead mechanical designers, had to be upgraded to meet the project goals, and new systems had to be installed. “The labs were stacked fairly vertically, which allowed us to have two central utility platform cores running straight down,” he said. “That made the distribution and infrastructure as efficient as it could be. Once we knew what equipment we needed, we found two spots on the roof to build the raised platforms that would support the equipment. Then we had to figure out how to get all of it up there.” Building a crane that would hoist dozens of large pieces of equipment and 184 tons of steel to the upper floors didn’t make logistical sense, nor would it fit into the project’s timeframe. So, two helicopters made ELEVATION | 15


THE VALUE OF IDEAS

an unprecedented 180 lifts over a two-day period from a barge floating on the Chicago River. The mechanical contractor built further efficiency into the process by pre-sorting the materials into bundles and making sure each one was balanced before delivering them to the site. As for the labs, each one is different in size and function as well as design requirements for technology, climate control and acoustics. Exterior walls are variously clad in materials such as wood planking or corrugated metal, and were inspired by the view of Chicago looking north. They were about 70 percent completed when the client decided two of the larger spaces, encompassing over 20,000 square feet, should be shielded from radio frequency interference to contain cellular signals. Marijan explained: “The Merchandise Mart is in close proximity to a 911 call center. Everyone was hyper-sensitive to disrupting emergency calls or even being associated with disrupting those calls. A lot of detail had to be ironed out to create these rooms, so there are no errant signals coming from them. The Libertyville location was more forgiving because it was not in close proximity to the same concentration of cell towers or emergency providers.” “It was a difficult and costly change, but because of the flexibility we had, it was a change the owner could make without derailing or delaying the project,” said Lehrer. “That’s what was most valuable to them.”

CLIENT: MOTOROLA MOBILITY OWNER’S REPRESENTATIVE: CBRE ARCHITECT: GENSLER STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: KLEIN AND HOFFMAN MEP/FP ENGINEER: ENVIRONMENTAL SYSTEMS DESIGN, INC. 16 | ELEVATION


“ This is one of those once-in-a-lifetime Projects...”

Another big change was the decision to not locate Motorola’s manufacturing and production facility within the Merchandise Mart as originally planned. The facility’s miniscule tolerances for vibration, humidification and temperature were too difficult to control in a high-rise environment. Instead, it was moved to a nearby 63,000-square-foot, single-story warehouse, which the project team gutted and outfitted to the proper specifications. “One of the key things they did, instead of trying to communicate solely by emails and phone calls, was meet with us in Libertyville with their tradesmen. They walked through our facility numerous times instead of only relying on paper layouts,” said Motorola’s Lance Vondrak, director of operations at the facility. Vondrak also credited prep work, exhaustive reviews, design summaries and clear communication with enabling the team to successfully meet its milestones. “At the end of the day, what is important to me is that the production lines came up on time,” he said. “We got things right the first time.” Construction progressed, with as many as 500 tradesmen working on both sites at the same time. Meanwhile, the rest of the 4 million-squarefoot Merchandise Mart was operating as usual, with frequent and hugely populated trade shows running through the course of the year. “It was a stressful time, grinding through the details, but everybody did what they could to make it a lot easier, from the owners to our trade

partners,” said Marijan. “Everybody knew we were setting out to create something bigger than themselves, and they were up for the challenge.” Ultimately, the hard work paid off. The project was complete in 45 weeks, with the new headquarters at the Merchandise Mart earning LEED Platinum Status for corporate interiors. Lehrer and Martinkus agreed that teamwork was the factor that brought the project to its successful conclusion. “Value is not always about money,” said Lehrer. “Often, it’s about time. Motorola had a very compressed schedule and a complex project, but it was met effectively because of the team and the process. Everyone was working toward the same goal.” “It was a collaborative team that challenged people to bring their best ideas and solutions, ultimately creating a creative and healthy work environment for Motorola,” said Martinkus. “This is one of those ‘once-in-a-lifetime projects,’ for which we would all jump at the opportunity to work on again.” Stephen Monaco, Motorola’s head of global real estate & workplace services, said communication ultimately created value on the project. “The toughest challenge was really not the tight schedule, the technicality of the labs or the lifting of steel, but managing the complex matrix of relationships between Motorola and Google at the time. The multiple consultants and the trades were always square and level on all sides of the conversation. That was the driver for our successful outcome,“ he said. ± ELEVATION | 17


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THE VALUE OF IDEAS

When Senior Lifestyle Corporation set out to develop its first Signature Collection community in the country, they knew that architectural details and innovative amenities would be key to achieving new heights of luxury. “We knew we wanted something first class,” said Jerry Frumm, executive vice president at Senior Lifestyle. “We wanted it to be very warm and comfortable for our residents, who have a level of sophistication that reflects the market we are in.” While many visitors have compared the Northbrook assisted living and memory care community to a high-end resort or hotel, Frumm prefers the analogy “country club.” The 175,000-square-foot, five-story, 156-unit, all masonry North Shore Place welcomes residents and their guests with a spacious marble entry, grand spaces, extensive cherry millwork and custom built-ins throughout. Among the common areas are a bistro and coffee shop; restaurants for casual and formal dining; movie theater; beauty salon; library; therapeutic fitness and exercise center; and craft and game rooms. While all units are fully licensed for assisted living, 116 units are appointed with full kitchens featuring stainless steel appliances, granite countertops and in-unit laundry. The remaining 40 units, designed specifically for residents requiring memory care support for Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, are located on the second floor. “A lot of thought went into the layout and spatial planning,” said architect Jon Lindstrom of SAS Architects and Planners in Northbrook. “There are many opportunities for personal interaction, both indoors and outdoors. Some are private and secluded, and others are more open.” Ground was broken in February 2013, but weeks of pre-planning took place first. North Shore Place was a complex project entailing an irregular footprint, numerous specialty spaces and more than 25 trade partners. The client established a budget but the interior design was not complete and the finishes had yet to be selected. Working around these challenges and completing the job on time would require intense coordination. The project team used Building Information Modeling (BIM) software to virtually work out every detail of the structure and critical systems before construction began.

NORTHSHORE PLACE

©Bob Hallam

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One enormous task was coordinating the placement of miles of wiring, piping and ductwork running horizontally and vertically through the building. That’s where BIM came in. Each subcontractor devised a schematic, and the schematics were interpreted into three dimensions and compared. “The first time through, we had more than 500 conflicts on a single floor,” said Skender superintendent Brian Ribordy. “The HVAC sub wanted to put something in a certain spot, and so did the fire suppression sub. Or they would be running into rebar. We had to work out the details.” “With a cast-in-place concrete structure, you have to know where the rebar is, and that reinforcement has required clearances should a contractor need to make a core or penetration,” said Lindstrom. “It gets pretty complicated.” Later, trade partners used GPS locators to find the exact spots to penetrate the concrete decks for their particular jobs. “With a traditional system, you have laminates or vellums on a light table, draw everything in 2D, and then perform the layout with tape measures,” said Skender project manager Blake MacGregor. It takes an infinite amount of time. With BIM, we were laying out 30,000 square feet of floor plate in three days.” BIM’s three-dimensional capabilities also proved valuable when laying out various components, equipment and distribution lines in the mechanical room of the basement, he said. “When anyone questioned why we thought something wouldn’t fit, we had it visually ready in 3D form,” he said. “It ended those philosophical discussions.” To help schedule each day’s work, Skender relied on the expertise of their trade partners to plan schedules in great detail. They provided input as to the amount of time they needed, what had to be finished before they could start and at what points they could work alongside other trade partners rather than independently. “It’s easier to hold them accountable if they help make the schedule,” said Ribordy. “Instead of dictating the plumber’s schedule, we would ask him how many days he needed in order to complete his work. When you approach the trades and actually ask for their input, they are more committed and can better manage their manpower.” “Brian was very attuned to the scheduling process,” said MacGregor. “He was always playing out milestones. He would say, ‘We have to start this activity on this date,’ and then work backward to see that the shop drawings, procurement, reviews and everything was completed in time. That really drove the production of the project.”

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S T R A T S E U L A S V S “ E C PRO


Not finishing on time could potentially damage Senior Lifestyle’s brand, he added. Scheduling was especially critical when it came to completing the masonry before the second winter set in. The building footprint, far from rectilinear in shape, was a stylized “S” with many ins and outs and an extension on one side. The decision was made to build vertically in batches, which were determined by the scale of the scaffolding, and to circle the building. “When you’re working in small batches, you’re able to focus on that piece rather than monitor 200 people across a huge building,” said MacGregor. “Everyone is in one spot.” “It also allows the trades to have consistent manpower,” said Ribordy. “Instead of 10 laborers today and 25 tomorrow, there’s no roller coaster. They appreciate that and want to keep working with you.”

E H T W I T H E T E A M.” H T D AN

And even though interior design decisions weren’t finalized until early spring of 2014, advance planning gave trade partners—particularly the electrician and finish carpenter—enough notice to organize and reallocate manpower for critical path work. Many other efficiencies helped move the project through one of the worst winters and one of the wettest springs in Illinois weather history. North Shore Place was delivered to the client two weeks earlier than anticipated. “Skender really stepped up for us and did a great job,” said Frumm. “They came to us with great solutions in terms of how quickly they could get the building done, and they hit every step along the way.” “Value starts with the process and the team,” said Lindstrom. “When you have a team that can work together toward a common goal, there is value. In addition, being responsive when issues come up or questions need to be answered, that creates value. Not only does it keep things moving, it creates trust along the way.” ±

OWNER: SENIOR LIFESTYLE CORPORATION ARCHITECT: SAS ARCHITECTS AND PLANNERS INTERIOR DESIGN: LANTZ-BOGGIO ARCHITECTS STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: BOWMAN, BARRETT & ASSOCIATES, INC. MEP ENGINEER: KLAUCENS & ASSOCIATES, INC. CIVIL ENGINEER: SPACECO LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT: TESKA ASSOCIATES, INC.

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CHRIS LIANG-VERGARA

Chief, Learning Innovation LEAP Innovations Courtesy of 1871


ELEVATING THE INDUSTRY The work at 1871 is never done. Just two years after its launch, Chicago’s largest and most talked-about tech incubator created 1,500 jobs, expanded its physical footprint in The Merchandise Mart and introduced 1871 2.0, a place that reflects the organization’s ever-evolving objectives and desire to constantly keep raising the bar. But innovation, fast growth and results like these don’t happen by chance; they happen when you take the long view (multi-year view) of your goals. Howard Tullman, CEO of 1871 explains.

EL: Nearly everyone in the Chicago business community has heard of 1871. What were you trying to accomplish with 1871 2.0? HT: We were trying to accomplish some things that weren’t part of 1871 initially but which were certainly part of the roadmap. 1871 1.0 was about creating a physical space that assembled a community of startups, incubators, accelerators, universities and venture funds. Now instead of focusing exclusively on building a broad horizontal community, we’re very focused on establishing vertical, domain-specific, clusters as well. HOWARD TULLMAN

We also wanted to create a space for alumni offices. We didn’t want our success stories leaving, so we built a new area with more identity that would give them the ability to have a distinct place, and yet they could still take advantage of all of the shared resources and opportunities here. We also wanted to make sure our alumni would not incur the costs and the distractions of starting out and worrying about security deposits and furniture because you soon discover that it’s easy to lose sight of their

Courtesy of 1871

EL: How has the mission of 1871 evolved since it first launched, and how is the evolution reflected in the design of 1871 2.0? HT: The mission has changed, as I said earlier, because we were initially constructing a community. In the old days, bragging about how much startups raised was probably appropriate. Today I would say it’s about results. We’re a startup factory, but

primary mission, which is to keep building their businesses.

the factory’s value depends on its out-put, not its input. What we

The last objective was to bring in out of state venture funds and

real jobs and the creation of companies that are going to last.

let them have a presence here in part to meet our companies, and to also act as a launching place for their out of town portfolio companies. Last month we had a dozen companies from Turkey visit for a few weeks; this month we’ll have groups from Israel. So the idea is, if they want to enter the United States global market, 1871 and Chicago are the best jumping off points they can find anywhere.

want is to have people focused on sustainable recurring revenues, And so 1871 2.0 is consistent with that up-or-out idea where you’re either growing and expanding and creating a real business or we want you to be doing something else, maybe somewhere else. It’s aspirational—we want people to say, “When I grow larger, I want to have an office over there in 2.0.” That was the intention and part of the design was to make it look not like a frat house or the tech treehouse, but to make it look a little more professional while retaining all the flexibility, the connections, and the fun that we think is always present here. (Continued on next page)

ELEVATION | 23


EL: 1871’s goal from the start was to create jobs, and with the

EL: 1871 was built on a little of bit of faith. At what point did

addition of The Bunker, LEAP Innovations and The Good Food

you and others who helped create this initiative know that it

Business Accelerator, it’s opening new doors and possibilities for

was successful?

those who don’t always get exposure in the tech industry. Tell us

HT: I don’t think we’re ever successful. We measure progress which

about these initiatives, why they’re important, and what they’ll

is ongoing, not success which is an endpoint, and we’re continuing

do for the local economy and the community.

to progress. This is an arms race; the expectations of customers are

HT: I think we have been very successful with job creation. We’ve

always progressive. Miracles today are so-whats six months from now.

created around 1500 jobs, our companies have raised about $42 million now and we’ve graduated 70 companies. It’s doing exactly

I think we knew at the beginning of last year that a change was

what the Mayor and the Governor asked for and that’s job creation

required, which was roughly when a whole new team came in,

and business creation. Having said that, this year will be very much

and the change was about metrics and accountability and it was

about new initiatives designed to broaden the scope and broaden

about placing a focus on results. And so we’ll know we’re successful

the reach of 1871, whether it’s to women or to veterans, or to

when we look back in another three to four years, we’ll have met

minorities or to people in certain designated industries.

the Mayor’s objective to have created 10,000 to 20,000 new technology jobs, and many of them will be in The Merchandise

We’re also focusing heavily on social investing and social

Mart. The whole Mart is being transformed from the old Mart of

entrepreneurship, but there’s no downside or weaker economics

showrooms to the new Mart of technology and there’s probably

associated with the social side of business. Impact Engine, one of

at least one million square feet here, which are already devoted to

our accelerators, is not comprised of non-profit companies; they

technology companies. The good news is The Mart has about 3.5

are for-profit businesses trying to solve important social problems.

million square feet of space, so we’ve got some room to expand.

They’ll have just as much or maybe more economic impact, especially with younger generations who want to buy a product

EL: What advice do you give to members at 1871 that would be

that is connected to a cause or work at a company or get involved

of interest to our audience?

with a company that has an intention not to just make money,

HT: Ultimately talent is great, creativity is great, enthusiasm is

but to also make a difference. That’s a big part of the 2.0 culture

great, but hard work and perseverance are what make the

too, because we want to have an impact.

difference. We tell them that you can’t be all things to all people, so focus. We also tell them that multi-tasking is a flagrant lie and

EL: How does cluster development and understanding the assets

nobody can be a successful multi-tasker. All you can be doing in

of a region maximize the value of a large initiative like 1871?

that situation is doing a mediocre job at a lot of different things.

HT: I think people didn’t necessarily appreciate that who you bring

You have to get your head down, put all of the wood behind

together and the people you’re building your businesses around

one arrowhead, and really focus on what’s important.

(and with) are as important as the physical space. So when we talk about clusters, we talk about lateral learning and lateral learning leads to solutions that work. A lot of value is created in these clusters. It spurs innovation and spurs other people to up their game, and we think that you have to constantly be iterating, constantly be raising the bar, if you really want to create lasting, sustainable value.

24 | ELEVATION


SKENDER CONSTRUCTION 200 W. Madison Street, 13th Floor Chicago, Illinois 60606 T 312.781.0265 F 312.781.0279 www.skender.com

Profile for Skender Construction

ELEVATION Magazine Issue 006  

ELEVATION is a publication of Skender Construction. All rights reserved.

ELEVATION Magazine Issue 006  

ELEVATION is a publication of Skender Construction. All rights reserved.

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