When the problem was pressure
Three-quarters of a million square feet. Sixteen stories. A $365 million total construction budget.
That’s CDC Building 23, the largest lab facility at the Atlanta headquarters of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. When Batchelor & Kimball was hired to install the HVAC mechanical systems, we knew the building’s size would be a major factor.
“It was so large that just keeping track of all the workers could be a challenge,” says Bill Doty, project executive. “The team could be spread up and down across five or six floors at once.”
Outside the facility, we faced the opposite problem: no space at all. Rubbing shoulders with sprawling Emory University and bustling Emory Hospital, the CDC’s crowded main campus is already densely built. That meant no staging area to store supplies or organize materials for the next day’s work. Nowhere to route trucks, and no way to bring in big equipment.
“You’re in a little postage-stamp area,” says Trent Strine, project manager. “And the only thing that will fit on the job site is a crane.”
With all of the supplies stored off site, each day’s work depended on a complex choreography of just-in-time deliveries — the right materials, for the right workers, at the right moment. And a day of bad weather, a malfunctioning crane, a misfiled form or any other small mishap could bring a domino effect, requiring the reworking of numerous interlocking schedules.