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University of Texas San Antonio Combined Science Facility Renovations

Gilbane worked in a fully occupied facility with minimal disruption utilizing detailed planning and communications with UTSA.

Multiple projects on an occupied campus

Gilbane completed the renovation of three buildings on the San Antonio 1604 Campus. The buildings include the Science building, Life Sciences Laboratory (LSL), and the Physical Science Laboratory (PSL). The LSL and PSL were complete interior demolition and replacement projects. Both laboratory buildings are now supported by a new central plant. The Science building includes a new fire sprinkler system and life safety upgrades. The renovations were completed in a fully occupied building.

These projects presented a challenge due to work being performed in occupied facilities with ongoing operations. The existing Science Building was an extremely busy building with full occupancy all day and partial occupancy until late in the night. Gilbane worked closely with the UTSA campus personnel to understand the buildings’ schedules on a day to day basis and plan major work activities for better access times such as semester breaks and holidays utilizing a complete night shift operation at the Science Building project to minimize the impact to the daily users. Materials were delivered at night as there is no laydown space available around the building; all materials went into the work area when they were offloaded. Successfully working in an occupied facility requires detailed planning and most importantly continual communication.

Client Value

The project included a complete new mechanical plant to support the new biology and chemistry laboratories. Two water heating pumps were delivered to the project for installation the next day. In a close review of all components it was determined that the manufacturer had switched the motors during fabrication and each pump had the other pump’s required motor. Gilbane immediately notified the Subcontractor and confirmed the findings. The manufacturer was contacted and wanted to take the pumps back to the supplier for revisions. Gilbane knew that having the pumps in hand was critical to the project schedule and would not let the pumps leave the jobsite. The manufacturer responded and the pumps were corrected at the jobsite by a factory authorized representative. The pumps were then installed at the originally planned time and no schedule time was lost.