UAS FH Construction Update for 3/7/2014
Building of a Different Color
The UAS Freshman Residence hall changed color this week as the Contractor installed a black waterproof membrane over the top of the plywood sheathing. If you are into aesthetics, the plywood sheathing had a warm and earth friendly feel. Many would not mind that warm wood look as a final building exterior. Now us Engineering types would be happy to leave the final building exterior this great black waterproof membrane.
Installing Black Waterproof Membrane
The black membrane is composed of two waterproofing materials—an aggressive rubberized asphalt adhesive backed by a layer of high density cross laminated polyethylene. This black membrane is 40 mills thick, has an adhesion force of 3.0 lbs/sq-in and a Permeance of only 0.05 Perms (2.9 ng/m2s Pa). There are not many materials available that when tested in accordance with ASTM E96 that can meet this requirement. This black waterproof membrane is great stuff and provides all the protection that this building will ever need. I wonder if the Architect will let me leave the building this way?
UAS Freshman Residence Hall Black Waterproof Membrane
If not, the building will change color three more times in the coming weeks until we get to the final colors selected by the Architects. To see those colors take a look at the UAS Freshman Housing website at http://www.uas.alaska.edu/juneau/freshman-housing.html
South Side of Building
Two for One.
We hit Two milestones in One week.
The first milestone is that we added two additional subcontractors to the project site. The fire sprinkler subcontractor and the fire alarm subcontractor. The second milestone is that the last concrete floor is being poured today.
Fire Sprinkler Pipe
Fire sprinkler pipe is made from high strength steel and comes to the job site in long 21- foot lengths. The Contractor cuts the pipe to the correct length and then uses a tool to bend a groove in at the end of the pipe. Two pipes are connected together with a pipe coupling. The pipe coupling sets down into this groove and holds the two pieces of pipe together.
Fire Sprinkler Pipe Grooved End
Fire Sprinkler Pipe Coupling
Concrete is delivered to the project site in that standard round barreled cement truck. The concrete is then poured into the hopper of the Concrete pumper truck and then it is pumped up to the third floor of UAS Freshman Residence Hall I.
Although, the concrete pump truck saves tons of work, hauling around a 4” diameter hose filled with concrete is still a lot of hard work.
Still Hard Work
We are glad to have all of the concrete floors poured. This further reduces the delays of bad weather and also gives more area for the contractor to work and to bring in the subcontractors for electrical, mechanical, fire sprinkler, fire alarm, and soon sheet rock.
Fast Concrete? Feb 21
Tuesday evening I stopped by the UAS Freshman Housing project site on my way home from the office. The Contractor poured the third floor concrete deck early that morning and the concrete finishers were still there working putting the final finish on the surface.
The concrete foreman was grumbling “this accelerated concrete is difficult to finish.”
Accelerated Concrete? (Fast Concrete) Contractors have been using cement concrete for thousands of years. In the past 50 years, the developers of Portland Cement Concrete have invented many new products that make concrete stronger, lighter, and faster. They use what are called accelerators to make the concrete set up faster and achieve design strength sooner. Normal concrete will reach design strength in about 7 days and full strength in 21 days. Fast Concrete (Accelerated Concrete) will reach design strength in 3 days. The main advantage of Fast Concrete is that the contractor can remove concrete forms and start building much sooner. In cold weather the Contractor does not have to keep it heated as long.
I must be getting old, because I don’t always think faster is better and often wish that we could all slow down and enjoy life a little more, stop and smell the roses, watch a sunset, read a book, or even sleep in the day after a long hard day of pouring concrete.
This week the Contractor poured the second and third floors of Hall II. This completes the concrete pours in Hall II and has opened up more room for the electrician’s and mechanics to complete their work. The Contractor is pouring the fifth floor of Hall I today and is hoping for good weather to pour the remaining two floors next week.
This weekend there is an Opera at JDHS, gospel choir at the JACK, Olympics on the TV, clear blue skies overhead and the northern lights forecast is a level 4! I can hardly wait. Wish we had an accelerator for Fridays.
Pumping Concrete onto Floor 2 – Hall II.
Framing interior walls on Fast Concrete floor that is just 20 hours old.
UAS FH Construction Update for 2/14/2014
A Room with a View
Want a Room with a View? Enroll for 2014 Fall Semester here at UAS and live in the new UAS Freshman Residence Housing. The past couple of weeks have given us some spectacular sunrises and sunsets over the Mendenhall Glacier. Below is a View from each of the 32 rooms that you could enjoy while attending your first year of classes. Click on the small views to see the full size Room with a View.
Last week here at the construction site and at Eagle Crest we were praying for snow.
This morning we got our wish.
Construction wants the warmer weather that comes with snow so we can pour the concrete floors in the Residence Halls. Eagle Crest wants snow to play in.
With the warmer weather, the contractor has scheduled to pour the concrete floors in Resident Hall II. The concrete pours are on the critical path, so every day of delay in a concrete pour is a day that the construction crews will have to work overtime to make up the lost day. So keep an eye out for the Big Blue Truck that lets us know the Contractor is pouring concrete.
Happy Valentine’s Day from the Construction Site.
Room with a View
Click on a room to see a larger view.
Hall II - Floor 1
Hall II Floor 2
Hall I Floor 2
Hall II Floor 3
Hall I Floor 3
Hall II Floor 4
Hall I Floor 4
Hall I Floor 5
UAS FH Construction Update for 2/07/2014
Too Much Sun
The Contractor has installed the roof sheathing on both Hall I & II. By the end of Saturday they will also have the roof on the commons done. They have placed the hydronic heating tubes in the top floor of Hall II and would like to pore the concrete floor, but he says we have Too Much Sun……..
Too Much Sun? Never heard of such a thing!
It’s like too large Bullwinkle’s Pizza or too much maple syrup on your Waffle House waffle.
It’s like a too cool Ray Troll print or catching a too big King Salmon.
No matter what the Contractor says, I’ve never had Too Much Sun.
We should set that to music.
This Morning’s Sunrise From Room 504B
Contractor installing steel roof members over the Commons Area
The Contractor would like to pour the concrete floors in Resident Hall II. However, all the clear sky’s we have had the past several days has brought with it cold temperatures. The concrete batch plant needs temperatures of 20 degrees and rising. So each morning when I enjoy the sunrise over the mountains, the Contractor can’t pour concrete and the project gets behind another day. I may have to take up skiing and pray for snow, and warmer weather.
In-floor heating piping waiting for warmer weather for a concrete pour.
UAS Freshman Residence Hall 1 on a Frosty February 4, morning.
UAS FH Construction Update for 1/31/2014
A Wide View
This morning was an excellent example of why the Designers of the UAS Freshman Residential Housing project wanted a Wide View from the Commons area. This Wide View is made possible by using Red Iron that can span a wide distance without interior supports.
The commons area includes the general purpose room (lounge) on the Second floor and the Classroom / Conference room on the fourth floor.
Wide View from the Fourth Floor of the Commons Area - (Jan 31, 2014)
The UAS Freshman Residential Hall uses two different types of steel construction, Red Iron for the commons area, and Cold Formed Steel for the residential halls. The main reason for using Red Iron in the commons area is so we can have wide open spaces and windows. The classroom and lounge has an open span of 33 feet wide. This is more than twice the width of the spans in the residential suites.
The Cold Formed Steel used in the Residential Suites give us 9’-6” wide windows.
View from Suite 305b - January 31, 2014
Now those who read the January 17 construction update may say. “Cold Formed Steel can also span wide distances when shaped into a truss” That is correct. But, a truss is much taller than red iron and would increase your floor heights.
The Contractor made some good progress week, pouring concrete on the third and fourth floor of the Commons Area, sheathing the roof on Hall II and interior framing of trusses on Hall I.
UAS FH Construction Update for 1/24/2014
January is often thought as the perfect time for; building snow forts, skiing at Eagle Crest playing board games, going to the movies, and Pouring Concrete. Pouring Concrete in January? Yes, the Contractor took advantage of the warm weather we have had this week and poured concrete floor slabs in the 2nd and 5th floor mechanical rooms and the stair treads. Here in Juneau, we broke the high temperature on both Wednesday and Thursday. Right now (11:30 am) it is 40 degrees and we will likely break the record of 45 which was set in 1978.
Freshly Poured Concrete Floor
Note our favorite red concrete pumper truck in the background.
Pouring Concrete Stairs.
Note that the Red concrete pumper truck could not access this area, so the Contractor had to use the 5 gallon bucket method.
The Contractor has taken advantage of the good weather this week and has installed the trusses on Residential Hall I, plywood sheathing on the gable ends of Residential Hall II, eave trim blocking on Residential Hall II and started to rough-in electrical in Hall II. We are grateful for the good construction weather of the past weeks and hope that it continues for another couple of weeks until we can get the roof on.
Setting a Truss on Resident Hall I
Tomorrow while we enjoy another record breaking sunny January day in Juneau, remember the Contractor who will be pouring concrete on in the third floor of the commons area.
UAS FH Construction Update for 1/17/2014
This week the Contractor put up the Trusses on the UAS Freshman Resident Hall II. The Contractor has just started on the last floor on Hall I and will be putting up Trusses on Hall I in the next week or so. These Trusses top out the building and gives us a good feel for how large the Freshman Resident Hall really is. What a nice addition this will be to our campus.
UAS Freshman Residence Hall 8:30 AM 1-17-2014
Good question. Best way to explain this is with an example. Say we want to cover a room that is 5 feet wide. We could use a beam, like a wood 2x4. Now if that room was 10 feet wide, we would need to make our beam deeper to something like a wood 2x12. Now if that room was 20 feet wide we would have to make our beam even deeper to something like a wood 2x30. As you can see that as the room gets wider, or the weight on the top of the room gets heavier, the beam needs to get deeper. These deep beams require a lot of material, (wood, steel, etc.) and much of the material is not being used to its fullest potential. The material in the top of the beam is typically under compression and the material in the bottom of the beam us under tension. The material in the middle of the beam has very little stress. See Figure.
The Idea behind a Truss is to remove most of that material in the middle to reduce cost. Trusses are usually more efficient and less costly to cover rooms, buildings and houses when they get wider than 20 feet.
Trusses come in all shapes and sizes. The Freshman Residential Housing uses A Shaped Trusses. Next time when in one of the large box stores in Juneau, look up and you will see they use Flat Truss. which you can imagine as a very deep beam with all of the wasted material removed.
Contractor working on UAS Trusses
Trusses are made from the Simple and Stable Triangle
UAS FH Construction Update for 1/10/2014
We have been climbing ladders for the past couple of months in the UAS Freshman Residential Housing project. The ladder was a good invention, it makes much safer to climb trees to pick apples or climb to the top of the house to get the cat. However, climbing back down the ladder with a basket full of apples or an ungrateful cat is not all that safe. Now stairs was a great invention. Stairs are much easier climb and they leave your hands free to carry a bag of groceries. Stairs are also much safer to climb than ladders or even steep pathways. This increased safety is why in project site plans we design in a set of stairs any time a sidewalk or pathway gets steeper than 8%.
The first known set of stairs date back to 6000 B.C. The first known spiral staircase appear in 470 B.C. at a temple in Selinunte Sicily. The longest stairway is adjacent to the Niesenbahn Funicular railway near Spiez Switzerland with 11,674 steps. The Penrose staircase has 14 steps, but gets you nowhere. The Juneau Federal Building has 120 stairs and our UAS Freshman Housing has 72 stairs.
I carry a set of plans and camera around the project site and was very happy to see the Contractor installing the stairways this week. I think that stairs is a great invention. Although some may argue that the escalator or elevator is a better invention. We have no escalators in the UAS Freshman Housing project and the elevator will not be installed for several more months. So today we can just take a minute and appreciate the great invention of stairs.
UAS Freshman Residence Stairs
UAS Freshman Residence Housing Jan 2014
UAS FH Construction Update for 1/03/2014
While you were out the Contractor kept working right through the Christmas break, only taking off for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. They made some good progress with adding the last floor to Residence Hall II and will have a good start on the fourth floor on Residence Hall I. Another thing you will notice since you left is that they have placed the plywood sheathing on Residence Hall II.
UAS Freshman Housing – December 20, 2013
UAS Freshman Housing – January 3, 2014
We got several good snowstorms over the Holiday that slowed the work down considerably. The past couple of warm rainy days have melted all the snow and ice off the building. We are hoping that any new snow will hold off for another couple of weeks until we get the roof on. Then it can snow all it wants.