NorthShore University HealthSystem Medical Office Building
Round Lake Beach, Ill.

Owner: NorthShore University HealthSystem
General Contractor: Pepper Construction
Lead Design Firm: OKW Architects
Structural Engineer: The Structural Group Ltd.
Civil Engineer: Doland Engineering LLC
MEP Engineer: Primera Engineers Ltd.
Electrical Engineer: Dickerson Engineering Inc.
Owner’s Representative: Integrated Facilities Solutions Inc.
Landscape Architect: Teska Associates Inc.
Glazing Subcontractor: Capitol Glass & Architectural Metals  
Footing, Foundation, and Slab Subcontractor: Duco Cement Construction
Site Concrete and Asphalt Subcontractor: Chadwick Contracting Co. 
Millwork Subcontractor: Great Lakes Architectural Millworks
Masonry Subcontractor: J&E Duff 
Roofing Subcontractor: Olsson Roofing Co.
Landscape Installation Subcontractor: Winters Landscape

Are project delivery and contracting methods that are typically associated with large, complex projects viable options for efforts under $10 million? That’s what the team tasked with building a 17,500-sq-ft, single-story clinic sought to find out after the owner agreed to use integrated project delivery (IPD) and an integrated form of agreement (IFOA). While none of the team members had direct experience with the approaches, the mutual trust forged through two decades of collaboration on a variety of other projects enabled the team to tackle learning curve issues while still delivering a quality project within the limitations of a smaller budget and abbreviated timeline.

From a design perspective, the project carried a host of inherent challenges, including a constrained, high-visibility corner site with substantial stormwater requirements, wetlands and poor soils. 

To accommodate the owner’s future growth plans, the team developed a building design that allowed for a future second floor expansion. Masonry and roof details as well as structural and MEP systems were all designed to facilitate vertical growth while also minimizing potential disruptions to first-floor operations.

An extended preconstruction planning phase, initially considered a potential drawback of an integrated project approach, proved highly beneficial. Along with evaluating options with an eye toward improving ongoing building maintenance requirements, the project team also identified numerous time- and cost-saving opportunities, such as relocating mechanical and water/sprinkler rooms to a different side of the building. 

This move trimmed a week off the schedule and saved $50,000. Similarly, adopting a peel-and-stick membrane as an air and vapor barrier for exterior masonry cavity walls would save approximately $40,000 compared with the originally specified fluid-applied system and expedited building envelope construction.

To achieve the highest level of transparency and communication throughout the project, the team used data visualization software to create an IFOA dashboard that captured critical performance metrics against primary targets. Information was refreshed monthly, allowing team members and the owner to monitor project-cost trend graphics and progress toward incentive thresholds. 

The dashboard also helped identify potential issues before they became challenges. Alerted that early sitework was running over budget and compromising shared profits, the team quickly assessed current practices, analyzed alternative methods and pinpointed opportunities for improvement that put the work back on track without compromising quality.

BIM and the latest project management technology helped expedite document submittals and reviews, virtually eliminating paper from the project. Constant collaboration also helped the team uncover more opportunities for planned and “on the spot” prefabrication, including underground plumbing, kitting of electrical components and prebuilt drywall soffits.

As a result of the team’s multi-faceted collaboration, a high-quality medical facility was completed on schedule and under budget.

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