Campus Construction Update, February 10, 2020
Associate Vice Chancellor for Finance and Operations Matt Dull chats with University Communications' Dave Blanks concerning construction progress on Appalachian's new residence halls.
Dave Blanks: Hey, folks. This is Dave Blanks from University Communications back with a Campus Construction Update, back with Matt Dull. Hi, Matt Dull.
Matt Dull: Hello. Hello. Hey, Dave.
Dave Blanks: Hey, man. Thanks for coming by the studio.
Matt Dull: Absolutely.
Dave Blanks: Do you want to talk about some construction updates?
Matt Dull: Sure. I would love to talk about it.
Dave Blanks: Crazy amount of rain right now. I usually intervene with some kind of weather comment, but serious. A lot of rain.
Matt Dull: Yeah, last week was pretty nuts. Lot of rain.
Dave Blanks: Saturation.
Matt Dull: Yeah, a lot of standing water around kind of everywhere in Boone.
Dave Blanks: How about the new system? The new, what did we call it? What kind of system is it, underneath? Stormwater retention system. How's that going?
Matt Dull: So, installed. Not all connected yet. We haven't kind of tied it in to the existing storm structure.
Dave Blanks: It's just chomping at the bit.
Matt Dull: Just kind of hanging out there. Ready to go. This would have been an amazing test.
Dave Blanks: Well, what else is going on, Matt?
Matt Dull: There's a lot happening. There's a lot of interior work now. We still have some of that exterior work, like finishing up the brick masonry of the buildings. We've got a little bit of a roof section on Building 100 to finish up, but a majority of the buildings, Building 200 is totally dried in. So plenty of work to do inside that building. When it's a day or weeks like we've had recently, where it's kind of rained every day, plenty of work inside, kind of finishing up installation, installing drywall, great time to be inside over these past few weeks and this week as well. So, even in warmer days, even though it may be raining, they're still able to do some masonry work on the outside. They've got scaffolding up on the outside of the buildings with kind of a wrap to it. So you can continue to heat that space with some temporary heating and still be able to get some work done as long as they can —
Dave Blanks: They can lay brick when it's misting or something?
Matt Dull: Yeah. And it's covered and protected from the rain and it's heated so it can really get a good cure and dry well with all the mortar in between the brick. So yeah, they really try to keep it going throughout the winter and even on rainy days like today. So, with the weather in Boone, when it feels like it rains or snows or does something every single day, you kind of have to keep moving. You can't wait for that nice, beautiful, sunny day like we're used to in the summer around here.
Dave Blanks: I would prefer if I was on the site to be in inside one of the buildings right now.
Matt Dull: Yeah, me too. I think. Yeah.
Dave Blanks: That's updates on kind of both 100 and 200, right?
Matt Dull: Yeah. General updates on that. Again, Building 100 ... lots of various activities happening throughout the building. Working on that masonry facade that continues on most of the building. Getting ready to do that production, that kind of one room after the next, after the next and down the corridors, drywall hanging in the dried in sections of the building, getting ready to start that and really kind of get going pretty quick production speed on that here this week. Window installation is pretty much done throughout the building except for that center section of Building 100 and the window frame installation will actually start this week and then once we get the full roof on and get it really dried in, we will install the windows probably in the next few weeks, but the window frames, themselves, should be going on this week and building that center section of Building 100.
Matt Dull: So, we're very close to drying in all of Building 100. We were able to dry in kind of those two other wings, the upper and lower wing and we've got kind of a partition, a Tyvec partition to keep those sections separate from the non-dried in section so we can kind of keep those sections really moving along. So yeah, things are going great. Finishing up that high roof section, kind of that, in that middle section of Building 100. That's going on as we can get on the roof and actually when we don't have high winds or lot of rain and kind of finish that up, so that'll be finishing up in the next couple of weeks as well. Lots of exterior work still to be done on Building 100 but moving towards a dried in building over the next three weeks, three to four weeks or so.
Dave Blanks: OK, cool. I took a look at the Future site, which is appstate.edu/future, right? And I was looking at, not the Stadium Drive side of the buildings, but the interior side of the buildings, you know what I mean? If you're looking from the Schaefer Center, looking up there, it was hard for me to kind of wrap my head around it. I haven't thought about it like that. I know, obviously, a building has multiple sides, but it's just not one that I've viewed so much and wow. Yeah, it's looking really good. It's really coming along.
Matt Dull: We're all really excited. Everybody working on the project is really excited about it and to see it physically on the space and also just to see how much green space is going to be in that central courtyard once these buildings are up —
Dave Blanks: A significant amount.
Matt Dull: Really realized just how big that footprint is. Yes, those are some big buildings, but they are also kind of surrounding a really nice sized green space in the middle, so they won't feel as on top of each other once all of it's done.
Dave Blanks: What else, Matt?
Matt Dull: Building 200, finishing up the brick and stone exterior, facade of that building getting really close to substantial completion. Just need a few more days of a little bit nicer weather to really get stuff wrapped up there. But it's coming along really nicely. And then also starting that large-scale drywall installation throughout the building in Building 200, starting with the top floors and kind of working our way down. It's getting ready to be production drywall time and really kind of cranking out, so it really will start to, on the interior, kind of like the exterior looks fairly finished. You start seeing when all the brick goes on that that veneer goes on, you're like, "Wow, that building looks like it can be moved into a couple of weeks. It looks great from the outside." Now it's time to really kind of dedicate all of our time to the interior and getting drywall up and then really where we can start working on a lot of the interior finishes. So things are going great. Building 200 on schedule for a timely delivery and yeah, both buildings going gangbusters. It's going really great.
Dave Blanks: Awesome. What about 300?
Matt Dull: So 300, we talked about a couple of times. Design is complete on 300. We'll have building permits in hand and ready to start construction on that. We do our financial close this week, so we do our financial closing on February the 13th, and that will be kind of our official signing all of the contract documents related to this second phase and then construction will commence on February 14th in earnest. So, there's a little bit of site work we'll do kind of next week just to get ready. So things like moving fence lines back a little bit so we can actually start doing some of the work, doing a little bit of erosion control, kind of changing some of our erosion control. You have to do that at the same time as we're moving the fences back. Building a temporary retaining pond at one end of the parking lot just to slow down some of that water that's coming off the site before it goes down through Duck Pond and that area down to the creek.
Matt Dull: So, this week we'll actually see some of those smaller, kind of getting the site ready for the following week, which we'll see going ahead and starting to strip the asphalt there. So that parking lot, a lot of the asphalt's still there of Stadium Drive and the parts where the buildings have not been built. So we'll actually be stripping that asphalt next week and really starting to grade and start getting the grades we need on the site towards the end of next week. So, hoping to make some pretty significant progress here in the next couple of weeks, really, as soon as we have the go-ahead on the 13th and everything closes, we'll start on the 14th with Building 300. So, starting this week.
Dave Blanks: Yeah. Cool. Wow.
Matt Dull: It does fly by, and I love going back through some of the older pictures and just kind of how the progression of the site has been over the past year or so. It's pretty cool to just kind of watch it progress, and we'll hopefully have some good time-lapse photography and some time-lapse drone shots to put on the site as we kind of finish up the first round of buildings to be able to watch it go from kind of empty field to the structures you'll see when they open up. So, we're working on that and that'll be something we'll actually have as something we can post on the website and let folks kind of look at it and just see the progress over the past year.
Dave Blanks: Anything else today, Matt, you want to cover?
Matt Dull: I think that's about it. We're continuing to work on design for Building 400. That's just in kind of the starting phases there. We talked about that in our last podcast, so yep. Just still continuing to progress that design so that we can keep on schedule with that building starting in February of 2021, so it's a year away, but it's going to be here before we know it.
Dave Blanks: Yeah, it sure will. Well, thanks a lot, Matt. I appreciate you taking the time, sir.
Matt Dull: Yeah, thanks for letting me stop by and chat.