A Model of Off-Site Execution
Solving for X is the foundation of algebra.
For contractors, the need to define “X” doesn’t end with grade school exams. In fact, our Osprey team in Atlanta, GA knows better than most the importance of understanding a project’s “X-Factor.”
As the first project across Balfour Beatty’s US operations to leverage Prescient’s modular construction technology, Osprey teammates have instilled a learning culture to best leverage the system’s advantages.
Off-site construction requires building panels to be designed to precise specifications and manufactured much earlier than with traditional construction, resulting in a far more efficient installation process. But, it is most effective when executed in close collaboration with successor trades such as the exterior skin and MEP subcontractors. Therein lies the “X-Factor.”
Once Prescient arrives on a jobsite, there is a predictable and fast-moving sequence in which the structure is assembled from the first post to the last screw. For a project to be successful, successor trades must be equally predictable and nimble.
“We discovered that the ‘X-Factor’ is understanding Prescient’s cadence to effectively allocate manpower, plan just-in-time deliveries and determine laydown areas for pre-stocked materials,” says Patrick Fleming, senior project manager. “When Prescient makes new real estate available, successor trade partners must immediately be ready to start work.”
The Osprey team didn’t just seek to understand Prescient’s system from a 10,000-foot view. From preconstruction onward, they meticulously identified elements of the Prescient system successor trades needed knowledge of, such as the number of studs required in the jamb of a window opening or the location of switches and receptacles in relation to lateral bracing.
It was this level of preparedness and precision that led Balfour Beatty to become the first contractor to go vertical with the Prescient system in Atlanta this past February.
The Prescient system also possesses safety advantages. Because panels arrive on-site with perimeter protection already in place, it reduces the risk for falls from height, which is the leading cause of construction worker injuries and fatalities.
Thanks to the successful efforts of exterior skin trade partners including Roswell Drywall, Window Traditions and Southern Walls as well as interior partners Century Fire Protection, Gill Plumbing and Titan Electric, the team is effectively putting work in place directly below the working deck according to plan.
“We’re plowing new ground in Atlanta,” praises Russ Brockelbank, project executive. “You can feel the energy and excitement in every member of the team.”
As the project progresses, they’ll continue to become a model of off-site execution from design to final delivery.