2015 Golden Trowel Excellence Award – Education Facility (College/University)

Prairie View Texas A&M University’s new 92,000sf Student Recreational Center surrounds the existing natatorium and connects to the Billy Nicks Field House.  The two story center includes wellness programming facilities; a three court basketball gym and elevated running track; state of the art weight training and fitness facilities; multi-purpose studios; a climbing wall; and office space.

masonry-PVAMThe project scope included the supply and installation of 217,350 modular brick in a three brick blend; 57,400 8”x 8” x 16” concrete masonry unit partitions, brick backup walls and natatorium walls; and a rain screen wall system consisting of 4,000 Arriscraft 3 5/8” thick x 1’ high x 2’ long units secured with a Gridworx aluminum track system.

There were several unusual conditions on the project.  In addition to the factory blending, the three brick blend required careful distribution and mingling on the scaffolding to avoid groupings of like colors.  The Arriscraft rain screen system required careful shop drawings and layout since the Gridworx horizontal track had to be perfectly aligned with the seemingly random window locations and other architectural elements.  Also, the system has open bed and head joints with the head joints filled with a snap in plastic vent so accuracy was essential.  The installation included a sloped wall and a radius wall.  The radius wall required that the track be cut down from its standard 12’ length to six feet (the shortest dimension allowed by Gridworx).  While the installation looks like it is made up of all typical sizes, 30 different shapes were used to execute soffit, corner, jamb, sill, stretcher and special conditions.  Finally, site logistics were difficult as the building was surrounded by other campus facilities that were operating during construction.  Storage room on the site was extremely tight and just in time deliveries were utilized whenever possible.

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