Originally conceived and budgeted as a repair-and-alterations job, the Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building project took on added scope through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The project was shelved in 2005, then revived under ARRA. Although "shovel ready," the project needed to meet new sustainability standards established under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. Through a $137-million, 500,000-sq-ft modernization, the project was able to achieve LEED-Platinum certification.

Despite some escalation for added costs and a 10% surcharge for sustainable elements, maintaining the budget was a significant challenge. To complete the project in 49 months, the team reduced estimated design time to 14 months from 24. Applying integrated team principles, delivery was concurrent and compressed rather than sequential. Howard S. Wright and its five top-tier subcontractors; SERA Architects and its consultants; and GSA leadership co-located during design and construction. Some elements of the technical documents, such as the demolition drawings and the mechanical/electrical/plumbing drawings were developed not by the engineer of record, but by the construction team. As design was optimized and buyout was finalized, the team was able to recycle $3 million of savings back into the project for scope enhancement and priority add-backs.


Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building, Portland

Key Players

Owner General Services Administration

Architect SERA Architects

General Contractor Howard S. Wright

Electrical Contractor Dynalectric Oregon

HVAC/Plumbing/Fire Protection McKinstry