Construction on the $16.5-million Dell Fine Arts Center at St. Andrew's Episcopal School wrapped up in July 2012. The three-building complex, designed by STG Design, features a 34,000-sq-ft performing arts building, a 6,200 sq-ft music building and a 6,200-sq-ft art studio.

White Construction had a tight 13-month schedule, including commissioning. Some of the techniques used to speed up construction included fully assembling a 10-story theatrical egress stair before dropping it into place. The team also constructed an elevated "dance floor" platform across the entire theater to allow for construction of the catwalk system and ceiling elements without encumbering the finish trades working on the perimeter walls and stepped seating platforms below.

Although more than 100 trees had to be removed for construction of the new facility, more than 200 new trees were planted across the campus. Trees that were removed were recycled into mulch, which was used in landscaping.

The project team was able to complete work on time and considerably under budget. In addition to extremely detailed critical-path scheduling that saved time and energy from the outset, White Construction was diligent in negotiations with subconsultants and was careful with its use of contractor contingency funds and was able to return some of that money to the school.

Key Players

Owner St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, Austin, Texas

General Contractor White Construction, Austin, Texas

Lead Design STG Design, Austin, Texas