2018 Associated Masonry Contractors of Houston Golden Trowel Honor Award – Government/Institutional

Houston Methodist – The Woodlands Hospital was designed to provide the surrounding community a full service, acute care hospital with many of the same services found at the main Methodist Hospital in the Medical Center.  With this in mind, they constructed a new 187 bed, 470,000 sq. ft. hospital and an adjoining 150,000 sq. ft. medical office building.

Camarata Masonry Systems, Ltd. (CMS) supplied and installed approximately 425,500 Rosewood modular bricks; 40,400 Renaissance smooth and rocked Arriscraft pieces, averaging 11 5/8” tall x 23 5/8” wide and 3 5/8” to 4 5/8” thick; 975 cast stone coping pieces, averaging 3’-0” long x 1’-6” wide x 4” thick; and 21,100 lightweight CMU.  CMS also provided and installed 8,650 burnished Arctic White 12” x 8” x 16” and 8” x 8” x 16” CMU, the majority of the units burnished on both sides.  In addition, 1,000 sq. ft. of Moca Cream honed limestone was provided and installed at the exterior sides of the chapel.  These stone pieces averaged 4’-0” tall x 1’-3” wide.

One of the first obstacles CMS had to overcome was providing the thicker 4 5/8” Arriscraft on the MOB portion of the project.  A typical Arriscraft piece is 3 5/8” thick, however, the design called for the Arriscraft to have a 1” projection and, specifically, that the back of the Arriscraft had to align with the back of the brick to maintain an exact 2” cavity.  CMS’s Arriscraft supplier had to manufacture and make special thicker units for this portion of the project.  In addition, the manufacturer’s machines, which are set up to cut quirk miters for standard 3-5/8” thick corner pieces, had to be adjusted to produce quirk miters for the required thicker corner units.

The different heights between the Arriscraft, brick and window openings of the Bed Tower also provided additional challenges.  The final location of all of the relief angles throughout the 6-story building had to be double checked by all parties due to these different heights.  Any adjustment also had to be checked to ensure it worked around the entire building and its different elevations.  Different sized windows and Arriscraft bands varied on different elevations, making the exact locations of the relief angles critical.  In addition, making sure the masonry bond of the brick and Arriscraft was correct from one elevation to the other became vital to the completion of the building’s veneer.

The Bed Tower was an extremely large tubular welded frame scaffolding project.  CMS erected and dismantled over 6,000 tubular welded scaffolding frames to perform our work on the project.  A majority of this scaffolding was 17 frames tall (over 101’-0” above finish floor).  Due to the high volume of scaffolding, CMS’s Scaffolding Installation and Usage Procedures were consistently followed and regular inspections were conducted.  Due to the design of the building, all windows needed to be installed prior to the masonry veneer.  With the windows in place, material could not be distributed from the inside of the building through these openings and CMS had to find the most efficient way to carry the material up the scaffolding from the exterior side.  This was accomplished by installing and connecting two material hoists directly onto the scaffolding and spacing them appropriately so they could service the most distance.

Both the Bed Tower and the MOB were completed on time and well in advance of the hospital’s ribbon cutting ceremony on June 10, 2017 and for the major grand opening on July 1, 2017.

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