Senior Thesis | The Pennsylvania State University | Architectural Engineering | AE Computer Lab | Contact Lynn

This page was last updated on April 4, 2011 by Lynn Appel and is hosted by the AE Department © 2011

Note: While great efforts have been taken to provide accurate and complete information on the pages of CPEP, please be aware that the information contained herewith is considered a work‐in progress for this thesis project. Modifications and changes related to the original building designs and construction methodologies for this senior thesis project are solely the interpretation of Christopher Ankeny. Changes and discrepancies in no way imply that the original design contained errors or was flawed. Differing assumptions, code references, requirements, and methodologies have been incorporated into this thesis project; therefore, investigation results may vary from the original design.

Office Building in D.C. | Washington, DC


Lynn Appel

Construction Management


Technical Assignment One

Within this technical report, one can find any information pertaining to the renovation of an Office Building in Washington, D.C.  You will first find information about the project schedule and how it is broken into the major phases of construction.  The provided schedule is broken into Design Phase, Demolition, Structure, Façade, Roof, Pavilion/Atrium Construction, MEP, Interiors and Finishes.  Following the schedule summary, there is a breakdown of the major Building Systems and what is being installed in the new Office Building.  Next, there is an evaluation of the cost of the project, followed by a site plan of existing conditions.  A description of Washington, D.C.’s local building conditions is explained, along with information about the owner, General Services Administration (GSA).  Finally, the project delivery system is defined followed by the staffing plans of the General Contractor and Construction Manager.  The owner has requested that the various names of the contractors be withheld due to the confidentiality of the project.


Technical Assignment Two

Technical Assignment 2 analyzes the key features of the project that affect project execution for the Office Building located in Washington, D.C.  This project includes the complete renovation of a 550,000 SF office building.  Important schedule attributes and the cost of the new structural system are determined.

A detailed project schedule was developed which reflects how the project was built beginning with the crucial phase of demolition and moving forward to the exterior construction and the interior construction.  A site layout plan was developed for the Office Building to convey proposed locations of the key features of the site.  A detailed estimate was performed for the structural system of the renovation.  The estimate produced 4,943 CY of concrete and over 80 tons of steel for the project, and total costs of $899,589 for the cast-in-place concrete and $545,211 for the structural steel package.  The estimates are 6% and 5% below the actual construction costs respectively.  A general conditions estimate is included to show projected costs for project staff, construction facilities and equipment, temporary utilities and miscellaneous project costs.  At an amount of $2.8 million, the general conditions accounts for approximately 4% of the total project cost.


Technical Assignment Three

Technical Assignment Three is intended to identify areas of the project that are good candidates for research, alternative methods, value engineering, and schedule compression for the Office Building in Washington, D.C.  This project includes a 550,000 SF renovation of an existing office building.  One of the largest challenges associated with this project is the existing chilled water plant on the Sub-basement level, which provides chilled water for an adjacent building, must remain in operation 24/7.

The top three constructability challenges identified on this project are maintaining the operation of an existing chilled water plant that serves an adjacent building and must remain in operation 24/7, working within the constraints of an extremely tight site, and the cutting of a new 8-story 20’x100’ atrium through the existing building.  Each issue presents different challenges that must be addressed by the project team.  The critical path of the project is set up to run through procurement, demolition, curtain wall installation, and MEP.  Several schedule acceleration scenarios are identified and include focusing on the curtain wall and MEP systems by increasing crews.  A formal Value Engineering process was not considered in the design phase or any other phase of the project because it was a public works project.

Through the in-depth analysis of the constructability challenges, schedule acceleration scenarios, value engineering topics along with an interview with the Project Management team, several features were identified as potential challenging areas on the Office Building project.  Several of the identified problem areas are further discussed in the four construction management analysis activities that include Simplifying the Façade, adding Photovoltaic panels to the green roof, using an Integrated Project Delivery method, and the coordination of the existing chilled water plant.  Each of the methods discussed provide insight into possible research topics for the spring thesis proposal.