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Construction Updates

Summer 2012

From Robert G. Sheeley
Associate Vice President for Capital Budgeting & Facilities Operations
Welcome back for the start of the Fall 2012 Semester.  Hope you had an enjoyable summer.  
We have been busy this summer completing projects we are directly over-seeing and working with the Department of Construction Services (former Department of Public Works) on projects they are administering. Needless to say, we have been busy.  
The following is a list of projects that we have been working on and their current status.
Renovation to Buley Library:  Probably the biggest issue on everyone’s mind is “what is going on with Buley Library”.  I am happy to report that the project is moving once again as evidenced by the demolition that has taken place over the summer.  We are 95% complete with the demolition.  Still some work to be done in the lower levels of the building with a demolition completion date of September 28th.
While demolition was taking place we were busy reviewing construction documents for the renovation of the old building.  As you can see the only thing remaining of the old building is the steel skeleton of the building.  The renovation will include basically a whole new building:
windows, exterior brick walls, new mechanical and electrical system, etc.  If we stay on schedule construction should start in December 2012 or early January 2013.  Construction should take approximately 18 to 20 months with a projected completion date of September 2014.   Currently we are looking at tenting and scaffolding the entire building to possibly shorten the construction schedule and protect the building.
In the meantime we have been reviewing over 200 drawings and well over 500 pages of written specifications for the renovations.  Reviews have also been conducted by the Office of the State Fire Marshal and the Office of the State Building Inspector.  Meetings were held throughout the summer to review comments from all parties as they relate to fire and building codes and sustainability initiatives of the University.  Drawings and written specifications were revised to reflect necessary changes.  Cost estimates for construction are currently under review and are over budget.  Cost cutting measures are being developed for consideration.  Bids are scheduled for release early October 2012.
New Academic/Science Building:  Design has been completed and final construction documents are 90% complete.  Review of drawings and specifications by the Office of the State Fire Marshal, the Office of State Building Inspector and Facilities were completed over the summer.  Cost estimates are currently under review and bid documents are scheduled to be released the end of September, 2012.  Construction is scheduled to start in December, 2012.
Construction is estimated to be completed in the Fall of 2014.
Also during the summer we met with the Department of Transportation and all utility companies on site for authorization to move utility poles and underground utilities across Fitch Street to the west side of the roadway.  Requests have been approved and relocation will take place this Fall.
1200-Car Parking Garage:  Project has progressed well over the summer.  We are on schedule for completion and the garage will be opened for use in January 2013.  We have included four charging stations for electric vehicles and planned for additional stations as the demand dictates.
Renovations to University Police Dispatch Center:  Project includes the renovation of the first floor Police Dispatch Center and basement locker room areas in Granoff Hall.  Police operations were temporarily moved to Facilities and TE-7 over the summer and we have scheduled the move back to Granoff Hall for  mid-September.  
School of Business:  The building was turned over to the University in May of this year and we moved faculty and staff into their new home in June of 2012.  We have been working with Dean Durnin, faculty and staff over the summer to work out initial operational problems and complete the installation of building audio visual equipment.  A ribbon cutting ceremony will be hosted by President Papazian and Dean Durnin on September 21st, 2012 at 1:00 pm.
Mechanical & Electrical Upgrades to Jennings Hall:  This multi phase project that began in the winter of 2011 is now 95% complete. The project included the removal and replacement of floors, ceilings, some doors and painting on all floors; the demolition and replacement of 8 air handling units located in the penthouse mechanical room; the removal of the existing 300 ton air conditioning unit and replacement of same; the installation of new fire alarm and mechanical control systems; and the replacement of the building emergency generator.
Commissioning of the building is under way and building deficiencies associated with the project are being identified and scheduled for correction in September of 2012.
Mechanical & Electrical Upgrades to Earl Hall:  This also was a multi phase project that was scheduled for completion on August 17th.  Unfortunately the contractor did not meet the completion date and much of the work done is not complete.  The contractor has a list of items that need attention and now will have to do the work between 10:00 pm and 7:00 am beginning August 29th, 2012.
Work covered by this contract involved the installation of central air conditioning, a new fire alarm system, renovations to bathrooms and stairways, installation of new glazed curtain wall at the front entrance to the building, installation of new local mechanical equipment in classrooms and offices, installation of new digital automatic building control system and the installation of a new building emergency generator.  Building commissioning to validate that all system are working as designed has yet to begin.  This is very disappointing to all of us involved.
I want to thank faculty and staff in the building for their cooperation throughout this project.  Construction has been very disruptive and yet everyone has been most understanding and cooperative.  This is a very difficult project since the building was built in 1963 and there was no room above ceilings to install the new mechanical systems (piping, control valves etc.).  Everything possible was done to minimize the impact of the piping in rooms throughout the building.  It will take a little time to work out all the kinks with the new systems but we will get it done.  
North Campus Parking Lot Repaving:  Project started immediately after the conclusion of the Connecticut Special Olympics in June.  Old blacktop was reclaimed, new granite curbing installed along with new lighting, paving (380 spaces) and sidewalk repair.  Project was completed on time and on budget with only minor site work left to be done.
Moore Field House Locker Room Renovations, Phase II:  Project was completed over the summer.  Former general locker room space was converted into men’s football locker room and individual team locker rooms for men’s soccer, basketball and track.  Recreational locker room space was also created along with a team conference room and storage space.  
Wintergreen Building Space Re-allocation Study:  Project was started late Spring 2012 with the hiring of a consultant.  Meetings were held throughout the summer months with representative of all Departments to collect data regarding space needs, the development of adjacencies and employee/work/student circulation flows to improve the overall functionality of the facility.  Three Space Plans are being developed for consideration and will be presented to the Wintergreen Space Planning Committee in the near future.  Plans will include proposed floor plans and cost estimate for any demolition and construction for budgetary planning purposes.
Co-Generation:  Last year we completed and engineering evaluation for the installation of a Fuel Cell and developed and advertised for proposals to install a Fuel Cell at SCSU.  After evaluating bids it was determined that the responses did not meet our economic performance criteria and therefore we rejected the bids.  
However, based on data from the fuel cell assessment, we believe a co-generation system would lower operating costs and greenhouse gas emissions and therefore might very well be a good investment and warrants further study.  We have submitted a request to the Department of Construction Services for a consultant to work with us to further investigate co-generation at the University.

Summer 2011

Southern Connecticut State University's Associate Vice President for Capital Budgeting & Facilities Operations Robert G. Sheeley provides the following update on campus construction:

The following is a list of projects that will be starting this summer, many of which will be completed before the beginning of the Fall 2011 Semester:

Renovation of the Old Student Center for Our New School of Business:  We have been waiting over 2 years for funding for this project and thanks to the persistence of Interim President Battle we received the Bonding we needed this past Spring.  The Construction contract has been issued to Nosal Builders and the contractor began to mobilize the week of May 9, 2011.  The project provides for the renovation of the front portion of the building, which is 22,973 square feet.  Spaces will be renovated to accommodate the departments of Masters of Business Administration, Accounting, Economics and Finance, Management and Marketing.  The renovated space will include faculty offices, computer labs, classrooms and conference/seminar rooms.  The project will also include an elevator, new lighting, ceiling systems and floor finishes. A four pipe heating and cooling system will be provided utilizing a remote chiller, connections to the University's high temperature hot water system and perimeter radiation system for supplemental heating. The front faτade will be demolished, with a new curtain wall and brick veneer faτade installed.  The project will take approximately 12 to 15 months to complete and will be a LEED Silver Certified project. 

Mechanical & Electrical Upgrades to Jennings Hall:  This is a multi-phase project that began during intersession this past winter with the removal and replacement of floor tiles on all floors of the building.  The over-all project includes renovations to bathrooms and stairways; replacement of hallway floors, doors, ceilings and painting of same; the demolition and replacement of 8 air handling units located in the penthouse mechanical room; the removal of the existing 300 ton chiller and installation of a new model for air conditioning in the basement mechanical room; the removal of the existing, and installation of a new, emergency generator in the basement generator room; the installation and extension of a new direct automatic controls system; and the installation of a new fire alarm system. Phase II of the project will take place this summer and additional phases will occur throughout the winter and into next summer. 

Mechanical & Electrical Upgrades to Earl Hall:  This also is a multi-phase project that will start this summer and continue through next summer.  The project includes renovation to bathrooms and stairways; the removal of the existing and installation of a new glazed curtain wall at the front of the building; demolition, removal and replacement of all building mechanical equipment in the basement mechanical room; installation of new local mechanical equipment in classrooms and offices; installation of new direct digital automatic controls system; installation of two air cooled chillers for all building air conditioning and a new building emergency generator; and the installation of a new fire alarm system.  The Music/Communications part of the building will be done this summer. 

Renovations to Farnham Hall: Phase I of this project, renovations to the building bathrooms/showers, were completed in the summer of 2009.  The balance of the work has been going on all winter and will be completed in August, 2011.  The work on the building includes the replacement of the exterior faτade of the building; renovations of the front patio and addition of a rear plaza with landscaping; renovations of approximately 4,000 square feet in the basement to event space with bathroom facilities and food service area; and the 8,000 square-foot renovation of the first floor including lobby, lounge, game room, computer lab, bike storage and residence apartments.

Replacement of Synthetic Surface at Jess Dow Field:  The synthetic surface at Jess Dow Field is over 11 years old and has outlived its life expectancy by some 3 years.  The current surface is splitting at the seams, has a worn down, uneven playing surface and in some areas has become a hazard.  The replacement of the surface requires the removal and legal disposal of the existing carpet, base layer material and in-fill rubber.  The new surface will be installed by on or before August 17, 2011.

Brownell Hall Roof Replacement and Installation of Solar Panels:  The current roof at Brownell Hall is 27 years old and will be replaced this summer.  The project also involves the installation of over 150 solar voltaic panels on the roof to offset some of the electrical operating cost of the facility.  Project scheduled for completion on or before August 19, 2011.

Phase II Locker Room Renovations at Moore Field House:  Project will begin this summer and will involve the complete gutting of the women's general locker, shower and bathroom areas and the conversion of the space to the men's football locker room, shower and bathroom facilities and individual team locker rooms for men's soccer, basketball and track.  Also included will be a small recreational locker room space.  Other elements included are a team conference room and storage room.  Project completion is scheduled for winter of 2011-12.

Replacement of Roof and Exterior Repairs to the Admissions Building:  Project involves the replacement  of the sloped slate roof on the main building; the replacement of a flat bituminous roof and carpentry repairs to the exterior rear porch, siding and wood trim.  The main house is on the register of historic places and all work has been approved by the Connecticut Historic Commission.  Work is scheduled for completion by the end of August, 2011.

Creation of Disaster Recovery Center at the Michael J. Adanti Student Center:  The project will meet two current concerns for backing up computer services in the event of a natural disaster or other such emergency rendering the University's Primary Data Center inoperable for a period of time.  First this DR Data Center will insure that SCSU will be able to maintain basic functionality for students, faculty and staff.  Second, as part of a mutual Disaster Recovery Plan with Western Connecticut State University, we will be providing rack space for WCSU and WCSU will in turn provide similar rack space for SCSU at their location in Danbury.  Project is scheduled for completion late summer of early fall of 2011.

Connecticut Hall Elevator Upgrades:  Project involves the mechanical repairs to both the service and passenger elevators.  In addition ,cab renovations to the passenger elevator will be made.  Scheduled completion date of August, 2011.  This project may have to be postponed until intersession 2011-12 if parts don't arrive on time. 

Cleaning and Protective Painting of Bleachers at Jess Dow Field:  In the Fall of 2011 the University had a structural engineer evaluate the condition of the bleachers and make recommendation for future maintenance.  The evaluation concluded that the bleachers were in good condition after 20 years and recommended that the steel structure be cleaned of surface rust and painted to prevent further rusting.  This project is labor intensive and will take all summer to complete.  The project has been bid and awarded and will start on or before June 1, 2011.

Construction of 1,200- Car Garage in Lot 7:  This project has been bid and is awaiting contract award.  Funds will become available in mid-June and the contract will be awarded.  We will be working with the contractor to construct temporary parking facilities next to Seabury this summer and if successful, will start construction of the new garage in September 2011.  Construction will take 15 to 18 months for completion.   

Wintergreen Building Water Infiltration Project:  This past winter we had a structural engineer conduct a Forensic Roof Evaluation of the building to identify the cause(s) of water infiltration into the building.  Several problems areas have been identified: the flexing of the metal roof decking (which is normal) has caused fasteners to back out and the exterior gutters have rivets missing and seams have opened up, allowing minor water infiltration.  The internal gutter within the mechanical screens is the main source of the water problem.  This is basically an original design flaw.   A new design to correct this flaw needs to be developed with specifications for bidding.  We have requested design services from the Department of Public Works and hope to have this project designed, bid and construction started by the end of the summer of 2011.

Renovations to First Floor of  Schwartz Hall: This project involves the renovation of poorly designed, dysfunctional office space to meet the needs of staff servicing our residential students on campus.  It also includes the renovation of student resource areas on the main level.  The project is currently out to bid and is scheduled for a June 2011 start and September 2011 completion. 

Additional design projects that we will be working on throughout the summer include the Design of Our New Academic Science Building and the re-design of the dispatch center in Granoff Hall for University Police. 

Last , but not least, we are close to an agreement with the architect for the redesign of documents for the completion of Buley Library.  Dr. Battle worked with the system office this past winter to get this project moving and legislation has been introduced, passed by committee and submitted to the full legislature for action.  The legislation calls for the redirection of approximately $18 million to complete the project.  Approval looks extremely favorable and we hope to start re-design this summer, bidding in the fall and construction start in the early spring of 2012

It will be a busy summer for all of us in Facilities but we look forward to the challenges before us.

Robert G. Sheeley
Associate Vice President for Capital Budgeting &  Facilities Operations