UAS Construction Update for 9/26/2014
Pathway to Soboleff Building: We have been scheduled to pave 3 times now, with no asphalt being placed yet. September in Southeast Alaska does not have the best weather when trying to place Asphalt Pavement. Paving is one of the last items on a construction project and unfortunately this typically happens in August and September, a couple very rainy months for Juneau. The only month that typically has more rain is October. Anytime the weather permits, the paving contractor has been working all over Juneau. UAS is nearing the top of their list and they are planning on paving tomorrow, Saturday, September 27. Let’s all cross or fingers that the weather on Saturday is as good as it is today.
Pathway to Whitehead Building still waiting for Asphalt Pavement.
UAS Site Lighting:
The Contractor installed several of the new pathway LED lights next to the Egan Library walkway. Look for more of these pathway lights to go up on the pathway to the Whitehead Building and along the sidewalk of Auke Lake Way.
UAS Freshman Housing.
The Contractor has been replacing window hinges in the UAS Freshman Residential suites and finishing punch-list items. We appreciate the patience of our UAS Freshmen and apologize for the inconvenience this has caused. Next week we will see a couple of man-lifts working around the outside of the new UAS Freshman Housing while they complete the metal siding around the windows and corners of the building. This work is expected to take several weeks.
UAS Construction Update for 9/19/2014
How many LED’s
How many Light Emitting Diodes (LED’s ) does it take to light the UAS parking lot and access road? I hope that only I have been staying up late at night wondering about this question. Today we get to know the answer. One LED from your headlamp is bright enough to illuminate the trail in front of you. However, it is not bright enough to illuminate a whole street. Therefore, light manufacturers just keep adding LED’s until they have enough light to illuminate a street, parking lot or building. The street lights being used on our project have 4 rows of LED’s with xx in each row. We have 53 street lights on this project. The number of LED’s is calculated as follows:
(4-rows)(10 LED/row)(53-poles) = 2,120 - LED’s
LED Street Light Fixture
The contractor working on our UAS site lighting project has now installed all but a couple of the new street lights. If you come in early or leave late, you have noticed that more and more lights get turned on each day.
New LED Street Light on Auke Lake Way
Keep a watch out next week for the Contractor installing smaller pathway light poles along the Auke Lake Way sidewalk and the pathway down to the roundabout. We will let one of our new UAS freshmen figure out how many LED’s it takes to light the pathway.
Pathway Light Pole Foundation
Pathway to Soboleff Building: The Contractor got notice this morning that the asphalt paving crew will be here today! The Contractor will need to do some additional work after the paving, but hopefully we will have this pathway back open soon.
UAS Freshman Housing.
Next week we will see a couple of man-lifts working around the outside of the new UAS Freshman Housing while they complete the metal siding around the windows and corners of the building. This work is expected to take several weeks.
UAS Construction Update for 9/12/2014
My grandmother told me stories that her mother would heat up a large rock on the wood stove at night. When the rock was nice and warm, she would wrap it up in a towel and put in the bottom of her bed to keep her warm during a cold winter night.
When I moved to Alaska 20+ years ago and had to pay my own heating bills, I turned down the thermostat to the cool to cold side and bought a couple more blankets. Then one year a friend gave us some modern hot rocks. These hot rocks are a cloth bag filled with some type of grain like wheat corn or rice. Now we just pop a hot rock bag into the microwave, heat them up and put them in the bottom of our bed to keep warm at night. Some hot rocks purchased at the store have included spices and fragrances and are intended as a heat or cold pack. The one down side of these hot rocks is that they get cold in the middle of the night and you kick them out onto the floor. That may be why grandmother never got more than 6 hours of sleep at night.
Grandmas Hot Rock
Grandmas Hot Rock2
My Hot Rocks
Each UAS Freshman Housing suite has what you could consider a mega-hot rock. Heating is provided by hydronic heating in the floor. (See Update on November 1, 2013) This system runs hot water through tubes the 4 inch thick concrete floor resulting in a mega-hot rock that weights
(4-inches)(250 Square Feet)(1-foot/12-inches)(150lb/cubic feet) = 12,500 pounds.
This “mega-hot rock” weights 6 tons and will not get cold at night, even if you turn the thermostat all the way down and stop the hot water from flowing through the tubes in the concrete. This mega-hot rock holds so much heat that it takes many, many hours for it to cool down or heat up. Therefore, instead of living in a house that jumped between 56 – 70 everyday like I did, Residents with hydronic floor heating are encouraged to pick a temperature they like and stay at that temperature all the time.
Concrete Pour Last November to Create one Mega Hot Rock
Pathway to Soboleff Building: The Contractor is almost complete with their earth work, set foundations for the handrail and will be installing handrail posts in the next day or so. They will be ready for asphalt pavement sometime next week, and then we just need to have a non-rainy day to get the paving done.
Posts Lined up for New Handrail
Campus Exterior Parking Lot Lighting.
Did you notice that we will lost 35 minutes of daylight last week? Also did you notice that the Contractor got up two rows of LED parking lot lights? The plan for next week is much the same, lose 36 minutes of daylight and install the remaining two rows of parking lot lights. Keep a watch out for new pathway lights showing up on Auke Lake Way.
Light Pole Foundation Proudly Supporting a New LED Light Pole
Pathway to Soboleff Building: The Contractor has removed the existing pavement and has started placing new subgrade along this pathway. This walkway will be closed for about 2-weeks while the contractor is working in this area. When the project is completed it will include a wider asphalt path with a handrail on the right hand side. Once the groundwork is prepared for this walkway, we will need to wait for a non-rainy day to pave this pathway. We all hope there are a few of these days left before snow flies.
Pathway Under Construction
Campus Exterior Parking Lot Lighting.
By the same time next week, we will have lost 35 minutes of daylight! Besides being simply amazing to us Engineers and Astronomers that daylight can change so fast, it makes it difficult for Faculty, Staff and Students who arrive before 6 AM or leave after 7:30 PM with the parking lot lights out. Therefore, we are having the Contractor install some temporary lighting by Monday. This will help tide UAS over until the new LED lighting is installed and turned on. These lights will be installed and turned on in sections, starting with the ones closest to the Egan entrance. The Contractor will have all the LED lights turned on in 3-4 weeks. By that time we will have lost 2 hours and 20 minutes. How does that happen?
Light Pole Foundation Waiting for LED Light Pole
UAS FH Construction Update for 9/05/2014
Transformation from Building to a Home (September 5)
UAS Freshman over the past 10 days have been transforming the new UAS Freshman Residence hall from a wonderful building into a comfortable and exciting home. This will be their home for the next x months and I have been impressed with how quickly the project went from a construction zone into a living zone. Orange vests and hard hats have been replaced with clean trendy outfits and stylish hair. The Noise of Chop saws and screw guns have been replaced with energetic talking and laughter. Blank cork boards have been livened up with invitations to campus activities of live concerts and painting the northern lights. Freshly painted walls are now decorated with photos of family, posters of Seahawks and the latest music groups.
Lively Bulletin Board
Inspiring Entrance Murals
The Contractor continues to work on some final punch list items in the commons area and mechanical rooms. Next week the Contractor will be installing the large glass wall that separates the fifth floor seminar/class room and the commons area on the 4th floor. These panes of glass are ten feet tall and are fully tempered. They will also be installing the final glass windows in the front of the building. UAS and the Contractor are working diligently to minimize the disruptions and inconveniences to our UAS Freshmen while these remaining items get completed.
Contractor Exterior Grading
UAS Freshmen started entering the new Residence Hall on August 27th. Many of the local news communities produced excellent stories on the project. Here are some links to those stories:
Facebook – UAS Facebook page:
KTOO and reporter Lisa Phu: http://www.ktoo.org/2014/09/03/new-uas-dorm-provides-housing-100-freshmen/
Juneau Empire and reporter Katie Moritz
UAS website also links/posts all of the news articles about UAS at: http://www.uas.alaska.edu
UAS FH Construction Update for 8/29/2014
Making it Better for the Next Generation (August 29)
The UAS Freshman Residential Housing came to life this week with over 100 new UAS Freshmen. The smiles, excitement and enthusiasm of our new UAS freshmen have been a wonderful thing to witness as they checked into their new suites and start another chapter in their life. The most frequent comment from parents was “What a beautiful building, I never lived in student housing that was this nice”.
New UAS Freshman Residential Housing
Parents of our UAS freshmen, including myself, went to school in a student dorm made from solid concrete, painted with lead based paint with cold steel doors. They looked a lot more like army barracks than college & university student housing. Most people work their whole life Making it Better for the Next Generation. Weather it is a Parent, Teacher, Artist, Biologist, Nurse or Law Enforcement Officer; we are working to make it better for the Next Generation.
The UAS Freshman Residential Housing project has been in the works for more than a decade and hundreds of people have contributed to its completion and operation. I have only been involved in this project for over one year and it has been my honor to do my small part as UAS construction representative. I would like to thank those who have made this project a reality including:
Local Elected Officials – Funding
Murray & Associates – Mechanical
Haight & Associates – Electrical
R&M – Civil
PDC – Structural
Greenbush Group – Acoustical
ASRC McGraw Constructors – General
Schmolck Mechanical – Plumbing
Schmolck – Ventilation Duct Work
Harri Plumbing & Heating – Sprinkler System
Chatham Electric – Electrical
Siemens – Building Controls
UAS IT Staff – Connection to the world
Doaks Lock and Key
Admiralty Construction Inc. – Civil Site Work
Hardrock Construction – Siding
Rainbow Builders – Carpet and Linoleum
Alaska Acoustical - Acoustical Ceiling Tiles
American Painting – Paint
Coble’s Painting – Paint
All Wall Construction – Paint
ASRC McGraw Hoonah All Stars – Sheet Rock
Northern Lights Development – Concrete Sidewalks
Otis – Elevator
CBC Construction – Roofing
Simplex-Grinnell – Fire Alarm & Security
All Wire Electric – Controls
F&F – Sheet Rock, also tape mud and paint
Secon – Paving
Gibson Door – Door and Hardware Installation
Perseverance Glass- Glass and Curtain wall installation
All of the men and women in these companies have worked long and hard hours Making it Better for the Next Generation of UAS Freshmen.
Thank you all again!
Check out the smiling UAS freshman faces the UAS Facebook page:
Check out the nice article and photos from the Thursdays Juneau Empire have on the project.
Next week KTOO will highlight a cover story on our UAS Freshman Residential Housing project.
Look for it on the cover website of: http://www.ktoo.org/
UAS FH Construction Update for 8/22/2014
Cramming for Finals (August 22)
Cramming for finals brings back memories of stacks of books, binders of class notes, long days in class room studies, long nights at the library and the ever present feeling the pressure that there was way too much to learn in short amount of time.
The Construction crew and Design team have been cramming for finals for quite some time now and with only 4 days left before UAS Freshmen start checking into the new UAS Freshman Residential Hall. Just like UAS students cramming for finals, the Construction crew has been working long days and weekends. Unlike college students the contractor has other options available to meet the deadline. Some of the options the contractor has chosen to use include:
- Hiring more tradesmen. There have been many days when over 40 workers have been inside completing the building.
- Providing incentives to tradesmen to continue to work faster and longer. The empty pizza boxes are stacking up.
- Creatively negotiating with the barge company when part of our furniture ended up in Sitka.
- Providing a temporary material, until the final material can be shipped and installed.
And, lots of express shipping and air freight. Several 20 foot long sections of aluminum window framing came up missing. The missing pieces had to be re-manufactured in Springdale Arkansans. Springdale does not have an air freight carrier that can handle a 20 foot long item. In fact the contractor called all the major air freight companies and none of them would take a 20 foot long item. However, our own Alaska Airlines said they could handle the 20-foot long window frames. The nearest Alaska Airlines destination is St. Louis Missouri, 350 miles from Springdale Arkansas.
To ensure the window frames made all of their connections, the Contractor send down one of their superintendents to ride shot-gun. On a sunny day, the drive from Springdale to St Louis takes 4-5 hours. But, during tornado season it took them nearly twice that long driving in, impenetrable rains, blinding lighting and high winds. The missing window frames made it on August 11 and are now installed in the north glass wall stairwell.
Aluminum Window Frames at the End of a Long Trip.
I once thought that after I graduated there would be no more cramming for finals. Life quickly taught me that there are always deadlines, schedules and final completion dates. We are all excited to see the new UAS Freshman Residential Housing building be ready enough for a new batch of UAS Freshmen to walk through the doors on Wednesday morning, August 27, 2014.
Furniture in General Purpose Room patiently waiting for wood trim around room.
General Purpose Kitchen
Room 403 Door, and New Sign
Room 403 Refrigerator, Microwave & Cabinets
Room 403 View
UAS FH Construction Update for 8/15/2014
No Light Bulbs (August 15)
Yes that is correct; there are No Light Bulbs in the new UAS Freshman Residential Housing. The Design team has made another bold statement by only using Light Emitting Diode (LED) lights.
The Incandescent Light bulb made successful by Thomas Edison runs electricity through a small metal element until it gets very hot (white hot) which produces light.
The Florescent Light bulbs work by running an electric current through a gas filled tube which produces a short-wave ultraviolet light that then causes a phosphor coating on the inside of the bulb to glow.
For a Neon Light, a clear glass tube is filled with neon, then a small electrical current but several thousand volts passes through the neon gas, causing it to emit a colored light. Neon emits a red light. Other gases can be used to get a different color, helium (yellow), carbon dioxide (white) and mercury (blue). However, they are still referred to neon lights.
Light Emitting Diode (LED) Lights work very similarly to standard light bulbs except for the fact that LEDs are much smaller and contain no filament. Instead of a filament, an LED creates light using nothing but the movement of electricity along the path of its semiconductor. As the electrons stream across the semiconductor, they create electromagnetic radiation. Some forms of this electromagnetic radiation can take the form of visible light, which humans can perceive via sight
This is a photo of the inside of the bathroom sink light fixture. Each of the yellow squares is a LED semiconductor. The LED’s are about the size of a pencil eraser and there are more than 300 LED’s in one bathroom mirror light fixture.
Inside and LED Light Fixture
Everyone talks about how much less electricity LED lights use. Which is true, the bathroom mirror light fixture uses only 15-20% of the electricity that a typical bathroom mirror light. However, us height challenged people love the idea that we may never have to change another light bulb again. An average LED light will last 50,000 hours or 20-40 years depending on how long you leave it on each day. LED lights are so efficient and long lasting that mothers everywhere will never have to tell their kids to turn out the lights.
If you try to buy LED lights at your local store, there is only one style. However, our design team has access to commercial lighting companies that have some great lighting selections.
Just check out some of the great lights in the UAS Freshman Residential Housing.
Ceiling Reflection lights in Commons Room
Wall Accent Lights in Commons Room
Very Bright Light Bars in the Class / Conference Room
Bedroom Dome Lights
And My favorite - Stairway Wall Lights
The Contractor is making the final push to complete the building. Rooms are painted, carpet is down, doors hung and lights installed. There are some finishing work left and they still need to complete the glass curtain walls that have been giving them headaches (see next week blog). Many of the construction crew have been working 60-80 hour weeks so our UAS Freshmen will have the best room in that nation to start school. Next time you see one, tell them Thank You.
UAS FH Construction Update for 8/08/2014
New Furniture Grades (August 8)
After reading furniture specifications for a week this spring and not being able to make heads or tails of them, I have decided to come up with my own furniture grading system.
Nathan Furniture Grades
1 –Mud Puddle in the Mendenhall Wetlands while sitting in a Duck Hunting Blind.
2 – Log Bench around a campfire circle at the Eagle River Boy Scout Camp
3 –Aluminum Lawn Chairs with plastic webbing seats in my First Apartment
4 – Reinforced colored Concrete seats used in my high school Literature Class.
5 –Wood Frame Chairs with Wicker Seats purchased at a garage sale for my first house
6 – New Adjustable Office Chair, first new piece of furniture I ever sat in.
7 – New couch for my living room.
8 – KI RoomScape UAS Freshman Residence Hall Furniture
9 – Living room furniture that my Mother never let us kids sit in.
10 - Furniture that no one will let me sit in.
This week furniture for the residential suites was installed in Hall II.
The furniture is made by KI who has been manufacturing furniture for over 70 years and has thousands of pieces of furniture to choose from. http://www.ki.com/about/history/
The furniture really makes the room look and feel like a student residential suite.
Now just need some students to bring the room to life.
Room 454B – Desks
Room 454B – Bed/Dresser 2
Room 454B – Armoires
Suite 454C – Bed/Dresser 1
Vestibule 454 – Note Refrigerator and Microwave will be installed soon.
Bathroom 454 – Sinks
Shower 454 – Shower
UAS FH Construction Update for 8/01/2014
Lasers at Work (August 1)
My physics teacher gave the following analogy for a laser: Light waves coming from a light bulb are like a bunch of 2-year olds, they just go in any which direction until they bump into a wall. Light waves coming from a laser is like a precision drill team with synchronized movements and all moving in the same direction. It may not be a good analogy, but it is memorable.
The theory behind Lasers was established in 1917 by Albert Einstein. It was not until the mid-1950’s when the first lasers came on the scene. It however, it has only been the last decade that lasers have been cheap enough that they started to show up on the construction site. Now every time you turn a corner in the UAS Freshman Residential Housing Project.
Here are some of the ways the Contractor has been using Lasers.
Laser used to set elevation grades on building foundations.
Laser placed inside sewer line to maintain constant slope
Laser Line to line up wall
Laser line to set constant elevation of light switches
Laser to level bathroom cabinets
Elevator 4-way laser to align elevator guides
Green Laser to align roof tiles
Laser is the acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation
The uses of lasers is limited only by your imagination.