Press Release: 01.15.2015

Delivering for Students

Renovated Morrissey Hall at Saint Louis University

When Saint Louis University students returned from summer break, a renovated Morrissey Hall awaited them.

Higher education renovation projects often require an aggressive schedule, and Saint Louis University’s renovation of Morrissey Hall was no exception. McCarthy recently completed this design-build renovation of the University’s former School of Law building over just one short summer.

Beginning with the Request for Proposal and through substantial completion, there was a sense of urgency and commitment to have Morrissey Hall finished in time for the first day of school.

After McCarthy received the Notice of Award March 17, the project team was tasked with submitting a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) to the university as soon as possible. Since the design documents would not be complete until early July, this required a major effort from McCarthy’s preconstruction and estimating teams. Utilizing McCarthy’s extensive database of historic projects at similar higher education facilities, the team evaluated information with the design documents as they became available. In just 30 days, McCarthy finalized the GMP, more than two months before the design documents were completed.

The 125,000-square-foot renovation began May 12 with McCarthy self-performing selective demolition. To successfully complete the renovation on time, the construction team implemented procedures to expedite completion of the project much quicker than other typical renovation projects of this size and scope. These procedures included:

  • Two weekday shifts throughout the duration. Third shifts were added strategically as needed
  • Routine Saturday shifts with Sunday shifts added as needed
  • Material expediting and procurement
  • Electronic plan room continuously updated in real-time with easy access for all trades to complete design documents as they became available
  • Coordinated material waste management program

In addition, other strategies that helped drive the fast schedule included:

  • Co-location of the architect to the jobsite, enhancing the team’s ability to discuss and implement design solutions immediately
  • Self-performing the demolition and general works allowed McCarthy to set the tone for schedule expectations

As a result of these efforts, the Morrissey Hall renovation project achieved substantial completion July 31, about a month before classes started. The building is now home to three College of Arts and Sciences departments — Languages, Literatures and Cultures; Psychology; and Sociology and Anthropology — as well as the Medical Family Therapy Program in the Department of Family and Community Medicine in the School of Medicine.

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