July 2015

ATI is currently Reusing the Gymnasium/MPR design from Martin Luther King, Jr., Junior High School for the Willow Cove Elementary School Modernization Project.

Reusing a previously approved design offers tremendous advantages over an original design when cost and schedule are major project considerations. In regard to schedule, previously approved DSA construction documents have a shorter bin time when resubmitted for a new project.

When considering costs, typically there are savings in both construction and design fees as previous construction revisions have been incorporated into the construction documents and to a large degree, the design is finished.

In the case of Willow Cove, in addition to schedule and cost, there was another benefit to the District in that desired program changes were easier to develop as we were working from a base design.

Those changes involved replacing the locker rooms from the previous design with a kitchen. While these changes proposed a challenge for our Engineering Department, they were overcome with innovative, quick solutions and allowed us to complete the design of the 14,000 sf building and submit to DSA within 5 weeks.

5 weeks from beginning of design to DSA submittal on a 14,000 sf building? Yeah, that’s fast!

As for the structural revisions, MLK’s MPR building had symmetrical two bays of cross bracing that support and provide lateral resistance to earthquakes. However, for Willow Cove’s MPR building one of these in particular could not be designed because of the access into the new Kitchen area. ATI’s Architects and Structural Engineers worked together to find an additional location for bracing along the wall.

ATI’s Structural Engineers also developed a creative solution that resulted in more storage room under the stage. In order to do this, fire protection had to be provided to the supporting walls underneath the stage. Fire protection is typically achieved by nailing gypsum boards to the wood framing. However, DSA requires plywood, in addition to the gypsum board for shear resistance, which would result in less storage space. ATI’s Structural Engineers recommended Sure-Board, a steel sheet and gypsum board composite, that meets the DSA required shear value and maximizes the amount of storage space for the School District.

In the end, ATI met the Districts goal of getting into DSA fast, setting the stage for the new/reuse building to open August 2016.