Volusia County formally dedicated its much-anticipated Emergency Operations and Communications Center on February 27, 2013, opening the doors to the $21 million, 43,000 square-foot-facility recently completed by Ajax Building Corporation.
The center is scheduled to be fully operational April 4, after the county’s Emergency Management Division and the Volusia County Sheriff’s Offices’ 911 dispatch center have completely moved in.
Designed to withstand a Category 5 hurricane, EF3 tornado and large missile impacts, the single-story building was constructed using concrete tilt panels and a steel superstructure. Other features include an emergency operations room to accommodate 90 support personnel during disasters, a state-of-the-art news media broadcast room, citizens information center, ham radio center, 75-foot backup radio tower, backup generators, helicopter pad, kitchen and bunk rooms for men and women.
“This facility will enable us to work much smarter every day — and especially during times of disaster-recovery,” said Emergency Management Director Charles Craig. “Many thanks to the project team members from Ajax Building Corporation and Schenkel Shultz Architecture for all of their hard work and dedication in building us a state-of-the-art Center for which all of us in Volusia County can truly be proud.”
Meeting rooms allow for key disaster response officials to convene to make strategic decisions necessary to protect the public during emergencies like hurricanes, civil unrest, wildfires and mass casualty incidents. The lobby includes bullet-resistant interior walls.
As construction manager, Ajax built the project in 12 months and maximized the local participation, hiring more than 93 percent of the subcontractors from the area. Orlando-based Schenkel Shultz Architecture designed the project.
“This facility is a tremendous asset for the community — and a rewarding project for Ajax to manage,” said Bill Byrne, Ajax president. “Projects like this one have an undeniable positive impact on the community and we are proud to have completed it on time and on budget.”
Located in west Daytona Beach at 3825 Tiger Bay Road, it replaces a 37-year-old a “bunker style” cramped and crowded building that was about one-fifth the size.
The newest emergency operations and sheriff’s communications center in Florida also is the “greenest.” Innovative design processes include computerized energy and air management that can be monitored and adjusted offsite over the Internet, green housekeeping, waste reduction and a recycling program.
Thermal energy storage contributes to significant energy cost savings. During off-peak hours, one chiller “makes ice” while the other serves the building’s cooling demands. During on-peak hours, when electricity is more expensive, only one chiller is required to run while melting the ice in the storage tanks to meet the cooling needs. Lower kilowatt demand equates to a sizable rebate from the utility company.
Other sustainable construction features included harvesting and recycling trees removed initially when the site was cleared, sourcing 20 percent of the building materials locally and recycling or salvaging 75 percent of the construction waste. Irrigation will be removed after one year, when native plantings have been established.
The design team will pursue Silver LEED certification of the facility. The project already has been recognized for attaining three Green Globes® for New Construction (NC) under the Green Building Initiative.
New Public Safety Complex
Several Leon County commissioners were on hand Tuesday for a site visit of the near complete $47.5 million facility. The project is on time and under budget, and construction should be complete by April or May.
Statement of William P. Byrne President/CEO, Ajax Building Corporation Re: Accident at Miami-Dade College West Campus
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Lisa Nason 407-470-0652 or 407-902-7342 firstname.lastname@example.org
Alia Faraj: 850-212-8317 email@example.com
Ron Sachs: 850-321-8048 firstname.lastname@example.org
Statement of William P. Byrne
President/CEO, Ajax Building Corporation
Re: Accident at Miami-Dade College West Campus
“Ajax Building Corporation extends our deepest sympathies and prayers to the families of our colleague who died, our colleagues currently being rescued and others injured in today’s accident at our construction job site for the new parking garage at Miami-Dade College West Campus in Doral, Florida. While we do not yet know the cause of this tragic collapse, we are committed to working actively and cooperatively with our design and construction partners and local, state and federal authorities to determine the exact cause of this accident. We also intend to conduct an internal review with our partners, Harvard Jolly and Coreslab.
“At this time, we are properly focused on the tragic loss of a life and the well being of anyone injured, and on helping the families involved.
“Safety on the job site is the overarching priority of Ajax all through the company’s 54-year history. Even as we work to determine the cause of this accident, we are committed to embracing any additional protocols, policies and procedures that will enhance and ensure the continued priority of safety.”
For information about the Miami Dade College West Campus project visit:
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Ajax joined in the celebration at Lynch Elementary School on May 31, officially cutting the ribbon to dedicate the new $16.9 million campus in St. Petersburg, Florida. While students have occupied much of the Pinellas County school since January, Ajax has recently completed playfields and other finishing touches to wrap up Phase 2, giving administrators a chance to mark the occasion as the academic year comes to a close.
Phase 1, which began when the original building was demolished in September 2010, occurred while students attended classes in an on-site “portable city.” Ajax fast-tracked construction to get six new buildings, totaling nearly 90,000 square feet, completed and another renovated by the 2011 holiday break. In fact, the school prototype was completed two months faster than other facilities of its kind.
“We’re excited to look across our campus and see such a beautiful facility,” noted retiring Principal Lorraine Bigelow. “It’s bittersweet to be leaving just as our new school is complete, but it’s gratifying to know that the students, teachers and families of Lynch Elementary will have such a beautiful place for learning.”
The new campus includes a two-story administration building, resource/art building, cafeteria/multi-purpose building, two-story 16-classroom building, two-story 12-classroom building and storage building. Ajax also renovated one of the two buildings that remain from the original school. Ajax worked with Hoffman Architects in Tarpon Springs on the project.
Reminders of the original Lynch Elementary, built in 1958, were kept to honor the school’s past. While concrete and steel was recycled after demolition, bricks from the building were used in the new center courtyard and the original school letters were used in the second entrance to the school.
“There are considerable challenges to be met while building a new facility in a very short timeframe while elementary-age students attend classes on campus,” said Bill Byrne, Ajax president. “Lynch personnel and Pinellas County Schools administrators were great partners in the process, and we were able to meet those challenges and deliver the facility on time and on budget.”
Following the dedication, Lynch held an Academic Adventure Spring Fling, showcasing student work and other educational activities. Students were welcome to sign up for a Public Library Card, school clubs, receive a Fun Pack full of ideas for learning this summer, see Science Fair project display boards and read student writings, among other activities. Kindergarten registration also was available.
The City of Clermont issued a press release regarding the recent Groundbreaking event of the Clermont Community Center. Please click on the link below to read the press release.
In an interior courtyard appropriately named Darwin’s Garden, the University of North Florida today formally inaugurated its beautiful new state-of-the-art Biological Sciences Building.
As construction manager, Ajax Building Corporation was delighted to help dedicate the $39.4 million four-story facility, funded totally by Public Education Capital Outlay Funds.
The Biology Department is housed in the 116,500-square foot building. It includes 17 teaching labs and 28 faculty research labs for aquatics, virology, ecology, genetics, physiology, molecular biology and molecular cell biology as well as the Coastal Biology Flagship Program.
Ajax began construction in July 2010, a year after completing UNF’s award-winning College of Education and Human Services building, which achieved LEED Gold.
The Biological Sciences Building will house all six specialized educational programs within the Department of Biology, including the Coastal Biology Flagship Program.
“No other university in the country has all of these coastal habitats in such close proximity to its campus,” noted UNF President John Delaney.
“With this new innovative Biological Sciences Building, UNF’s geographic location and the current areas of faculty expertise, the Coastal Biology Flagship Program is well on its way to becoming a center of excellence in the study of coastal ecosystems,” he said.
Programs of study leading to medical and dental school, as well as other health professions are also housed in the Department of Biology, plus the new Medical Lab Sciences program.
Undergraduate research opportunities will be greatly expanded with the additional space afforded in these new facilities. A large proportion of undergraduates work in research labs before completion of their undergraduate degree.
The building has four lecture halls, one with 192 seats, a multi-purpose classroom with 48 seats and two multi-purpose 48-seat classrooms with an operable partition enabling them to be combined. The building also has 27 research labs, 17 teaching labs, 37 offices, office support/laboratory support space and a conference room on each floor.
The facility has several points of interests, including an interior courtyard with a green wall; Tree of Life conference room; greenhouse; aquatic teaching labs, a necropsy lab; saltwater storage and prep rooms.
The interior courtyard, named Darwin’s Garden, is planted in native Florida species and will be used as a living botany classes. Five green walls on which flowering vines are growing will provide natural shading to the building.
A first-floor conference room has the “Tree of Life” etched on the glass outside two sides and travels up three stories. It describes the relationship of all life on the planet based on DNA analyses. It also acts as a time capsule because relationships will change as more DNA data is collected.
Six thousand gallons of salt water, provided by and transported from Marineland, is stored and available for aquatic research and teaching labs as well as the greenhouse.
All furniture in these labs is stainless steel to prevent rusting where saltwater is used. A unique necropsy lab allows dissection of large marine animals, such as dolphins, sharks and manatees that are up to 10 feet long and weigh 2,000 pounds.
The greenhouse, located on the roof of the building, is fully automated and designed to hold plant collections for botany labs and experiments requiring natural light.
The full-spectrum glass on the greenhouse is special and allows all wavelengths of light through, including ultraviolet. Various light levels and temperatures can be maintained at all times.
Some of the 17 teaching labs are used for entry-level classes and are oriented around octagonal tables for group work, with prep rooms between labs, allowing the preparation of materials for continuous labs without disturbing active teaching.
Two specialized teaching and five research labs are designed for working with salt water and marine animals. Four research labs have specially designed thick concrete floors for use with special microscopes that can’t tolerate vibrations.
While Ajax was the construction management firm for the project, the building was designed by the Joint Venture of Perkins + Will and the firm of Harvard Jolly.
The facility continues to support the standing commitment and success to deliver new facilities on campus that meet all the requirements for being “green” and sustainable. Once certified later in 2012, this facility will be the seventh “green” building on campus since 2005.
The Coastal Biology Flagship Program at UNF was established in October 2006.
The university’s campus is uniquely situated near the Atlantic Ocean, the St. Johns River and the Intracoastal Waterway. All of these bodies of water and their associated coastal habitats lie within 15 miles of campus, allowing for a broad range of coastal ecosystems to be studied and researched, from oceanic and marine habitats to freshwater lakes and rivers.
Ajax Building Corporation was selected to be the construction manager for East Roswell Library Branch in Fulton County, Georgia. This 15,000 SF/$4.6 million library will be a great asset to the local community. Funded by a local bond referendum approved by Fulton County voters in 2008, Ajax will keep as much of the construction dollars in the community as possible. In addition, Ajax intends to include local schools, community centers and neighborhoods throughout the design, construction and opening of the library. This will be a state-of-the-art facility designed and constructed to meet the needs of citizens of East Roswell.
Derek Gamble, who was recently promoted to Vice President of Operations has been featured in the Atlanta Business Chronicle People in the News.
Under beautiful skies, students at Holy Comforter Episcopal School in Tallahassee trekked through the dirt March 5, and for the first time, stepped foot through the doors of what will soon be their STEM Building. Feeling the excitement, each left their own personal mark on the construction site and inscribed their names on the interior walls.
Signatures, hearts, Bible verses, bubble letters and precious tiny prints now adorn the walls. The names will forever be a part of this project, but will soon be covered with brick masonry as construction continues, anticipating an August grand opening of the state of the art center.
Ajax expects to complete the project in July. Read more about it here http://bit.ly/w8va6d