Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sweating the Details

Right now all our work at CityWalk is in the details, and you need to know that we sweat every single one of them. I would like to write more about what’s going on as we push on to completion, but it isn’t easy to do. I don’t know how to make the minutiae of the construction process interesting. One day we go to look at the sample concrete finish in one of our apartments. The next day we examine the waterproofing around the edges of the roof. This stuff is all extremely important if want the building to be a quality place to live. But it would take a better writer than I to make it interesting.

The access panel to the outside air ducts in each apartment has been redesigned no less than six times. Each time a prototype is built and the architects, project managers and construction superintendents—and me--carefully examine it. The panel has to allow sufficient air through to the system; the panel has to allow convenient access for repairs; we don’t want tenants to be able to access it; and it has to look good. The issue is important.

But if I recorded the entire debate here, with pictures of each variation and descriptions of the interminable debate as to the defects and strengths of each particular panel, then the few readers that I have would run screaming from their computers.

Fortunately, or not, there is someone whose job it is to record each small piece of progress on the project. His name is Chris Rehkemper and his job is to inspect the building monthly so that he can assure the bank that all the work we say has been done has actually been done before the bank pays our construction draws. Here are some pictures from his report for the last month. They show the attention to detail that is necessary in a project like CityWalk:

Picture 1
The roof assembly under struction.

Picture 2
The construction fence around the east parking lot.

Picture 3
Drilling and placing of concrete piers at the new entrance.

Picture 4
Galvanized frames in place for the screens between the condo roof decks.

Picture 5
Fire Sprinkler lines in the ground floor retail space.

Picture 6
Electric meter boxes have been installed.

Picture 7
Lighting fixtures in the third floor tenant space.

This is only a sample of Mr. Rehkemper’s pictures from one month’s report and, of course, he can’t record everything.

Every detail needs to be sweated, and as we race on towards completion, we’re sweating harder than ever.

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