Being an icon for the community and its prominent location near the Dade/Broward County line along busy Interstate 75, attractive architecture was essential and achieved through the use of a 108--ft. high broadcast tower featuring the NBC logo. The tower was value engineered and tilt--up was selected because of its ability to save costs. Beyond adding an architectural element to the facility, the tower is highly functional and houses the microwave radio dish, lightning protection and ionization mechanisms.
Beyond speed, cost--savings and unique architectural features, tilt--up also offered NBC flexibility in terms of easy expansion.
“Tilt--up construction was specified for its speed, but NBC also recognized the great probability of expanding their facility,” says Coty Fournier, senior vice president of Miller Construction Company of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., leader of the design--build project team. “NBC decided to move ahead with the expansion about 75 percent into the original project. Tilt--up allowed us to easily move wall panels, which saved the client considerable time and money.”
Bridge over busy streets
Site cast tilt--up also bridged the gap, literally, for a challenging project in Miami.
Tilt--up contractor TiltCrete was selected to construct a bridge across a major road connecting a Nordstrom department store to a seven--story parking garage.
Constructed in only six weeks, the bridge spanned nearly 100 ft. According to Norm LoPresto, project manager at TiltCrete, the schedule for this project was often grueling.
“To meet the strict schedule the project demanded, our crew occasionally worked 18 to 20 hour days,” says LoPresto.
The casting bed for the tilt--up panels was in the median of the road. One panel had to be formed a couple of blocks down the road presenting an interesting challenge. The second panel had to be lifted onto a tractor--trailer and delivered to the area of the bridge construction. Two cranes were needed to lift the panel. Since the road is a main thoroughfare, construction work could only occur between the hours of 8 p.m. and 6 a.m.
The 20--in. thick, 80--ft. long panels required 55 tons of reinforcement to support the weight of the floor slab, the span it had to carry and to eliminate structural movement or fatigue. The reinforcement could not be lapped, which necessitated the use of mechanical splice joints. Each panel weighed approximately 65 tons.
Precast was originally thought to be the solution for this unique project, but the length of the beam, the bustling metropolitan area, and the expeditious way the beam would be delivered was not feasible for this area. Tilt--up proved to be the only viable solution for this challenge.
TiltCrete saw this as an opportunity to explore tilt--up as a solution for an unconventional project. “I have been in the construction industry for more than 25 years and this was my first bridge utilizing the tilt--up medium, but I do not think it will be my last,” says LoPresto. “This is an area where tilt--up will continue to grow and realize tremendous potential.”
Lighting the way
Not only is a working lighthouse in Oklahoma a bit of an aberration, but a lighthouse constructed using tilt--up is an unheard of phenomenon. The first of its kind, this 324--sq.--ft. lighthouse, probably the most inland structure of its kind in the country, serves as a signpost for an upscale development recently completed at one of the metro area reservoirs in the Oklahoma City area. The design was developed from a lighthouse viewed by the owner on a trip to the East Coast.
With an exterior finish of an elastomeric acrylic coating, the lighthouse is constructed of 5.5--in. reinforced panels that are identical in size, connected with a compression ring at the top. Temporary structures were required for the crane’s outrigger placement because of the narrow pier on which it is built. The tallest panel is more than 26 ft. high and the heaviest panel is about 11,400 lbs. A ladder is located inside the structure for access to the light and controls.
According to the general contractor for the project, Barry A. Cox of E.V. Construction Company, tilt--up construction was chosen over many possible methods including wood, EIFS and masonry because of its lower initial cost, low maintenance requirements and speed – the structure was completed in only 60 days.
Expressing architectural freedom