2011 – summer Issue

Continuous Learning

Construction is rapidly progressing on a 25 acre site situated on the northern end of Scottsdale, AZ. Interstates has a project team at the site completing the electrical work for the 217-unit continuum of care campus community featuring floor plans ranging from independent living casitas and courtyard residences to licensed assisted living care and memory care suites.

Under general contractor, Weitz Construction, Interstates' role in the project involves electrical construction for 39 casitas; each unit having approximately 1,200 feet of living space. It includes residential style wiring including wall fixtures and light fixtures, property site lighting, and fire alarms.

Typically, Interstates is not known for residential wiring. What makes this project noteworthy is the level of collaboration with Weitz Construction. Interstates and Weitz Construction share a similar philosophy for use of collaborative design, application of 3D, and schedule planning.

The Scottsdale project team is using the Last Planner scheduling concept and Interstates is learning a great deal about the process from this partnership. While Weitz's lean/agile concepts are similar to Interstates', the processes differ. Through the Scottsdale project, we've shared ideas and learned from each other. "Our team is intrigued by the "?pull meetings' that are an integral part of the Last Planner system," says Dave Los, Vice President Operations, Interstates Construction Services. "Together, all project partners look ahead and commit to schedules and clean hand-offs. It is refreshing to truly work as a team on behalf of the client."

As with industrial construction, 3D modeling is a valuable tool to visualize the finished project. For the Scottsdale project, it's being used extensively for clash detection during planning and construction. "As a general rule, everything that will be installed must be submitted for the 3D model," says Tracy Brown, Southwest Regional Office Manager, Interstates Construction. "If you do not submit something for the model, you can't expect to install it. This ensures that all building infrastructure is accounted for and one trade is not allowed to get in the way of another who has communicated their plan."

While a residential project may appear to differ from our regular zone, it is spot on when it comes to collaboration, planning, 3D and prefabrication. The concepts learned about Last Planner scheduling through this project are sure to be applied in future industrial jobs.