After Hilldale Public Schools had the District Service Center and Elementary Cafeteria Remodel project done and once the All Sports Fieldhouse and Softball/Baseball Locker Room Addition was started, Hilldale Public Schools needed a Tulsa Commercial Contractor to do the Hilldale Elementary Gymnasium and Classroom Addition project. The Tulsa Commercial Contractor chosen for the 3 projects was hired as a construction manager instead of a general contractor. When a Tulsa Commercial Contractor or any contractor is hired as a construction manager, it means the contractor fee is negotiated up front and the owner/architect sees the bids from the different trades.
In General Contractor bids it is the discretion of the contractor to chose from the bids they get, and the owner/architect aren’t able to see the bids of the subcontractor or see the mark up of the general contractor. In the Tulsa area a Tulsa Commercial Contractor would have advantage over a national contractor because of the relationship to the local subcontractors. The local subcontractors will be able to get supplies and service cheaply and they understand the local ordinances and policies and who to call to get inspections and who approves plans whether for a building permit or for fire sprinkler and fire alarms. Along with the subcontractor having the local advantage an area contractor or in Hilldale’s case a Tulsa Commercial Contractor is going to have know the local subcontractors and places to go for certain items, because some items are very intricate. The Hilldale Elementary Gymnasium and Classroom addition project consisted of such items because it was constructed differently than the other projects.
The Hilldale Elementary Classroom and Gymnasium Addition project consists of four separate sections; Area A, consists of classrooms two hallways, the east and west hallway connect to Area B; Area B, consists of a Gymnasium, concession area, large bathrooms, and a coach’s office; Area C, consists of a long hallway that wraps around an existing saferoom, encloses a courtyard, and connects to Area D; and Area D, consists of new offices, a secured entrance, and a remodel of a workroom. While each area is divided the areas connect to each other and are one seamless project.
Areas A, B, and C are pre-engineered metal building, or PEMB, with a brick veneer and Area D is masonry block building with a brick veneer. Area D infilled a section of the building and a “flat” roof, where the other 3 areas had a metal roof set at a pitch, but Area D and Area C have to connect. These means connecting separate types of buildings is difficult and the different roofs is another level of difficulty, so the location of the transition was chosen at one of the smallest points.
Area C is an enclosed hallway approximately nine and half feet wide. The other places where Area D connects to the existing building are wider but are the same type of building, including the type of roof. The “flat” roof was created out of a Thermoplastic Polyolefin, TPO, membrane and it isn’t flat but has peaks and valleys to channel water off of the roof and toward the drainage system.
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One of the items I alluded to earlier, as far as items that are intricate and needed a specialized subcontractor, are lintels, in this particular case, loose lintels. When a PEMB is designed the type of veneer, if there is one, has to be taken into account because the veneer has to anchor to the building and the building will have to support the weight. The lintels in Area C where large and were needed to support the masonry veneer.
The PEMB manufacturer didn’t create the lintels, but the specified lintels were so large that the lintels had to be supported by the frame of the PEMB. Lintels are used to help masonry over openings where there isn’t rebar to help carry the weight. We had to find some who could create the lintels and powder coat them in a color match red color. This may not seem like a huge issue, but to find a steel fabricator that does powder coating or galvanizing isn’t always easy. So steel companies only do erection, and some companies only do design and fabrication, so companies do both, but don’t coat the pieces, and if Hilldale Public Schools didn’t have a Tulsa Commercial Contractor, finding someone from the phonebook or google would be difficult. Once we had the lintels, we had to get the PEMB’s engineers to design the frame of the building to not only carry the weight of the building but to support the lintel and the masonry veneer across all the openings.
There are items or trades that are not local in nature. Usually, highly specialized trades aren’t local. One such trade are canopy designers. For the Hilldale All Sports Fieldhouse and Softball/Baseball Locker Room Addition and the Hilldale Elementary Gymnasium and Classroom Addition had canopies that contained a drainage system integrated in the structure itself. The canopy for Area D at the Hilldale Elementary Gymnasium and Classroom Addition had to tie into the storm drainage. The columns that hold the roof to the canopy are hollow and are connected to piping underground to channel the water away. The canopy roof has channels that move the water toward to the hollow columns and pushes the water to the storm drainage. The company chosen to create these canopies was from Georgia.
They not only created the canopies, but they installed them as well. There were also column covers that needed to go around the columns of the canopies that had to be fabricated and installed. We found a company also from Georgia that created column covers that are separate from the canopy company themselves. There were existing column covers that are being reused, so we had to color match the existing column covers, so we had to send a piece a of the existing column cover to the manufacturer in Georgia to match the color.
While there were companies not local included in this project, the bulk of the work was done and included from local subcontractors, which couldn’t have been done in budget if most of the trades were not local. The local subcontractors build relationships with local contractors and in the Tulsa area that means Tulsa Commercial Contractor.