Centene Corporation, a leading multi-national healthcare enterprise, is establishing an East Coast headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina. The 80-acre campus will accommodate 6,000 employees and will be comprised of one million square feet of office and meeting space, a corporate boardroom, childcare, dining, and a fitness center.
A condensed 32-week concrete construction timeline and complex cantilever designs presented a wide array of challenges to construction crews charged with erecting the building. The team turned to PERI USA to deliver a custom-engineered formwork and shoring system on a tight turnaround that would keep them safe and on schedule for Phase 1, including the East tower and parking garage.
The building design featured cantilevers extending up to 60 feet off the main building without self-support until all floors were constructed. To provide backshoring support on the cantilever, PERI provided a custom solution to support six building floors using Heavy Duty VST Shoring towers until permanent angled metal support beams could be installed.
PD5 shoring towers supported the tallest, 30-foot cantilevers. PD5 achieves a high load-bearing capacity 10,000 pounds per leg, even when extended to a maximum height of 32 feet. Assembly, dismantling, and transport of the system can be easily done by crane or trolley, and the continuous adjustment makes it applicable for all possibilities.
VARIOKIT VST Heavy-Duty Shoring Towers were selected to withstand the full backshoring loads of 1.5 million pounds on one single tower – a solution requiring a highly technical design and coordination. VST serves as shoring for projects requiring the central transfer of large loads and can be quickly assembled as towers, main beams, or birdcage scaffolding.
For the smaller cantilevers, HD 200 Heavy-Duty Props provided backshoring while SKYTABLE slab tables were stripped and flown to the next level in just 10 minutes without moving the props. HD 200 is PERI’s lightweight, stackable prop system comprised of individual prop sections with easy handling, assembly by hand, and flexible application. SKYTABLE is a large format table featuring a three-point pick method, best for large slab areas and designed for each project’s building geometry.
Product delays throughout the project – including delays in the delivery of steel support beams – required last-minute adjustments to the shoring support to ensure each tower could hold the load for an extended period of time. PERI USA engineers worked on site with the concrete crew to change solutions on the fly and ensure the project could safely continue.
In addition, the building footprint changed on each level, requiring changes to the formwork and slab systems for each new floor of the building. Each deck was designed as a complex grid with a high-level finish, leading to the decision to utilize the rentable, customized, and adjustable SKYTABLE forms for beams and slabs.
The formwork systems also enabled the use of self-consolidating, colored concrete, a slower-drying concrete. This added time to the construction process and further required an easy-to-use and quick formwork and slab solution to speed up the process.
PERI’s team faced an aggressive timeline and had to meet demands on multiple fronts with the construction of the Centene HQ building.
A typical project of this nature would require a month’s time to prepare after being awarded the work. Based on an aggressive construction timeline, the team had only two days to complete its prep work before the start of construction.
A team of eight engineers from PERI USA designed the unique formwork and shoring solutions for the Centene Corporation Headquarters. The development of the solutions required a combined 3,000 work hours.
In total, PERI USA shipped 250 orders from its facility to the project site, representing nearly $11 million of material in two months. More than half of the orders were shipped out on the same day the order was placed to keep construction moving forward without any delays, all of it occurring during PERI’s inventory season. Every truck to the site included a full system that could be erected immediately upon delivery due to limited holding space.
On top of the shoring and formwork system deliveries, PERI coordinated the delivery of 18 full and seven partial truckloads of plywood – 6.25 football fields worth – to be used with shoring.
With the cost of a single day of delay being $40,000 and to accommodate the high volume of deliveries daily, Lithko increased the concrete crew to 150 people on site working on a two-shift schedule to keep construction moving for 22 hours each day.
Phase One: Complete
Construction on the Centene campus will occur in multiple phases over several years. Despite the fast timeline and turnaround time, concrete construction was completed a week ahead of schedule thanks to the collaboration of Lithko and PERI USA and the efficiency of the systems used.
PERI’s involvement on phase one began in November 2020 and was completed in June 2021. Phase two is expected to begin in 2024.