Under Construction

Under Construction: Top Facility Projects of April 2023

Facilities Management Advisor’s “Under Construction” series highlights some of the latest, most interesting facility project announcements every month.

WNBA Training Facility Built by Women

The WNBA’s Seattle Storm is building a new state-of-the-art training facility in the team’s hometown. The Seattle Storm Center for Basketball Performance will include two side-by-side basketball courts; two exterior 3x half courts to accommodate the fast-growing 3×3 game that debuted in the 2020 Olympics; locker rooms; and strength and conditioning spaces specifically designed for professional WNBA players. The facility will also include the franchise’s business offices, marking the first time the team’s front-office staff and players will occupy the same building.

Rendering courtesy of Seattle Storm

Organization: Seattle Storm and Force 10 Facilities LLC
Location: Seattle, Wash.
Type of project: New build
Size: 50,000 square feet
Estimated cost: N/A
Status: Ground broken March 27
Expected completion: Before start of 2024 WNBA season

Interesting tidbit: Currently, 85% of all project team members across all disciplines are women. The women-led project team includes owner’s representative barrientos RYAN, a design team led by ZGF Architects and Shive-Hattery Architects, general contractor Sellen Construction, and landscape architect Walker Macy. The project is also designed to achieve LEED Gold certification, featuring all-electric operations and a rooftop solar array.

Quote: Lisa Brummel, co-owner of the Seattle Storm, said, “This facility reflects our franchise legacy, our athletes’ success, and aims to promote and grow the women’s game and expand youth access to play.” 

More details available here.

Major Investment from Leading Engine Maker

Cummins Inc. is investing more than $1 billion across its U.S. engine manufacturing network in Indiana, North Carolina, and New York. The investment will provide upgrades to those facilities to support the industry’s first fuel-agnostic engine platforms that will run on low-carbon fuels, including natural gas, diesel, and eventually hydrogen, helping decarbonize the nation’s truck fleets.

Courtesy: Cummins

Organizations: Cummins
Location: Indiana, North Carolina, and New York
Type of project: Renovation
Estimated cost: Over $1 billion
Status: Announced April 3
Expected completion: N/A

Interesting tidbit: Over half of all medium- and heavy-duty trucks on the road in the U.S. today use Cummins engines. Coinciding with the company’s billion-dollar announcement, President Joe Biden visited a Cummins factory and touted legislation boosting U.S. manufacturing and clean energy.

Quote: Biden said, “Before the pandemic, the supply chain wasn’t something most Americans spent much time thinking about. But today, after delays for parts and products, everyone knows why supply chains are so important. Instead of relying on equipment made overseas in places like China, the supply chains will be again made in America. They’ll begin in America.”

More details available here.

Casino Construction Safety Deal

Constructing a large facility like a casino has inherent dangers, but a new public-private deal is aiming to prevent worker injuries and hazard exposure on a project in Illinois. On April 18, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) signed a strategic partnership agreement with leaders from general contractor Ringland-Johnson Construction Co.; the Mid-America Carpenters Regional Council; and the Illinois On-Site Safety and Health Consultation Program to promote safety and health practices during construction of a new Hard Rock Casino.

Courtesy: OSHA

Organizations: OSHA, Ringland-Johnson Construction, Hard Rock International, et al.
Location: Rockford, Ill.
Type of project: New build
Size: 166,500 square feet
Estimated cost: +$300 million
Status: Ground broken September 2022
Expected completion: August 2024

Interesting tidbit: Under terms of the partnership, Ringland-Johnson will hold pre-construction meetings with each contractor and review site-specific safety plans and pre-task work plans. All contractors, subcontractors, and tier-subcontractors are required to have OSHA 30-hour certifications. Additionally, workers will participate in daily stretch and strength training and weekly toolbox meetings.

Quote: OSHA Area Director Jacob Scott said, “The Hard Rock Casino construction project is a good example of how public-private sector partnerships can provide a proven, collaborative framework for enhancing worker safety.”

More details available here.

Chico State’s First Net-Zero Energy Building

Chico State University and partners are constructing the new building for its College of Behavioral and Social Sciences—the first net-zero energy building on campus and the third in the entire California State University system. The building will be home to nine academic departments and will offer 22 classrooms, five laboratories, and one large, tiered lecture hall, as well as faculty offices, conference space, breakout rooms to foster collaboration, and open and enclosed study spaces.

Rendering courtesy of Turner Cunstruction

Organization: California State University, Chico (“Chico State”)
Location: Chico, Calif.
Type of project: New build
Size: 94,000 square feet
Estimated cost: $98 million
Design-build team: Turner Construction Co. and AC Martin
Status: Ground broken in February
Expected completion: Fall 2024

Interesting tidbit: Sustainable aspects of the building include solar panels, an efficient water system, a design that maximizes daylight and utilization of LED lighting, a chilled beam cooling system, and an indoor garden.

Quote: Chico State President Gayle Hutchinson said, “As we work to attract and serve the next generation of changemakers, we’re proud to do so with one of the most state-of-the-art buildings in the entire CSU system.”

More details available here.

N.Y. National Guard’s Green Maintenance Facility

New York National Guard and New York state officials broke ground on a new vehicle maintenance facility. The building will replace a 1970s-era maintenance shop and include more space and modern equipment for newer, larger military vehicles.

Courtesy: National Guard/William Albrecht

Organization: National Guard and New York State Office of General Services
Location: Troy, N.Y.
Type of project: New build
Size: 18,808 square feet
Estimated cost: $17 million
Design-build team: Bette & Cring Construction Group, C.H.A. Consulting, et al.
Status: Ground broken March 31
Expected completion: N/A

Interesting tidbit: Green features of the facility include a rooftop solar and battery storage system, which will generate more power than the maintenance shop will use, and a stormwater retention system, which will save rainwater to wash vehicles. The construction contract also requires that 75% of construction waste generated during the project be recycled or reused.

More details available here.

Honorable Mentions

Do you have a major project announcement you’d like considered for the “Under Construction” series? Please contact Editor Joe Bebon at JBebon@BLR.com.

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