Two Haskell projects, the Boynton Beach City Hall and Library and the United Airlines Catering Operations Kitchen in Newark, New Jersey, won National Awards of Merit from the Design-Build Institute of America.

August 2, 2021

DBIA Honors Two Haskell Projects with National Awards of Merit

The Boynton Beach City Hall and Library and United Airlines Catering Kitchen are lauded for their innovation, resiliency and cost- and time-efficiency.


Two Haskell projects, the Boynton Beach City Hall and Library in Boynton Beach, Florida, and the United Airlines Catering Operations Kitchen in Newark, New Jersey, have been chosen for National Awards of Merit from the Design-Build Institute of America, the organization has announced.

The top three entries in each of 10 categories are chosen as Award of Merit recipients and are automatically nominated for the National Award of Excellence.

“America’s design-build teams continue to deliver some of the most innovative, resilient, cost- and time-efficient projects in the nation,” said DBIA Executive Director/CEO Lisa Washington, CAE. “Whether it’s a huge multimillion-dollar infrastructure project or a small community center, these national design-build winners show how the industry is changing the way America builds – even during a pandemic.

“Now, more than ever, our communities will rely on that transformation, as we work to rebuild our post-COVID economy. DBIA is proud to honor this year’s design-build project and team winners who exemplify how the teamwork and innovation inherent in design-build can foster environmental stewardship and social responsibility, maximizing long-term value to the project, the team, and the community at large.”

All awards will be announced at the 2021 Design-Build Conference & Expo, set for November 2 in Denver, Colorado.

Here is a brief look at Haskell’s projects selected by the DBIA as some of the best of 2021:

Boynton Beach City Hall and Library

Boynton Beach, Florida

An Award of Merit winner in the Federal, State, County, Municipal category, the new 102,000-square-foot, four-story City Hall and Library facility is a tilt-up concrete and steel structure that comprises space for the city management staff, building department, commission chambers, community area, a public library and space for a future café.

The City initiated a master plan for the redevelopment of 16 acres into a pedestrian-friendly town center where residents could live, work and play. The City Hall and Library facility, along with its open space program, was designed to invite and promote private development in the area with the redevelopment’s added amenities and enhanced public safety criteria. This project was unique in that it houses many city departments, each with functional requirements. Throughout the project, the team was challenged to further refine the design even throughout construction. The City’s architect collaborated with the team to resolve issues and review user group requests.

This unique public-private partnership (P3) project was complex and the first of its kind attempted in the Florida. Haskell was the prime design-build partner, Boynton Beach Town Square, LLC (CFP) was the owner of the facilities and the contract with Haskell. E2L Real Estate Solutions was the Construction Manager for CFP, and the City of Boynton Beach was the end-user who leased the building from CFP.

City departments had to move out of their existing facilities and into temporary leased spaces during demolition. Time was of the essence to avoid extended leases and extra costs. To facilitate this expedited schedule, the City of Boynton Beach provided an early work permit for foundations and tilt-wall panels. The City had never provided separate permits for early work packages such as these, and it was a process Haskell and the City worked through together.

Demolition of existing structures was part of the contract. Haskell utilized a drone survey to quantify stockpiles of material and proposed crushing all the concrete recovered from the demolition of the various buildings to reuse as road base. This surveying quantified the cost, saved the client significant money that was used on other elements of the project and diverted waste from the landfill.

Haskell loaded all existing and new utilities into the building information model (BIM) and performed clash detection, leading to the rerouting of various services to allow for constructability issues due to sequencing, clearances required and future serviceability.

As the project progressed, the owner continued to push their vision of a world-class facility and a new beginning for their downtown district. They enhanced the project program by adding $2.5 million of scope from their own contingency funds, including a significant playground four times the size originally planned, an outdoor amphitheater twice as large as originally planned and increased safety and security for the public. All the additional work was completed within the original project schedule.

United Airlines Catering Operations Kitchen

Newark, New Jersey

An Award of Merit winner in the Industrial, Process and/or Research Facilities category, this project entailed converting 153,000 square feet of vacant storage space into a food-catering operation for United Airlines.

The design-build team transformed United’s space into an all-inclusive food-handling, preparation and new refrigerated catering facility. New food safety standards were also created to protect customers and employees alike. The new building presented challenges with minimal roof collateral loads, an available area that required adding about 35,000 square feet for a mezzanine, and extensive roof-mounted refrigeration systems due to the limited space on grade.

The onset of COVID-19 required unique solutions to keep project team members safe during construction. Haskell initiated a brief site shutdown to assess the situation and determine how to safely move forward and keep the site open for contractors who were able to work. Ultimately, the team expanded hours from one to two shifts to reduce the number of contractors on-site at any given time. This quick response protected employees and continued construction for an accurate completion date.

Because of changes at Newark Liberty International Airport, United had a strict deadline for relocating operations from its existing facility, and innovative coordination and sequencing between builders and designers was vital. Stakeholders assisted the development of solutions to new criteria while maintaining the project budget and schedule. Design documents contained information from 3D BIM models and were coordinated in a virtual environment as they were placed in the field.

Proprietary and revolutionary refrigeration systems implemented at the site were designed and tested by Haskell engineer Dana Lee Helman. After weeks of analysis, detailed design and testing, Helman and his team created a system that accomplished a complete cleaning in 40% less time than originally planned. This cleaning only took four hours as opposed to the original starting time of six hours.

Tragically, Helman passed away in May 2020 after a long health battle, but United and Haskell honored him with a plaque at the facility. Further, Helman’s unique refrigeration system will be implemented in future projects as a testament to his legacy.

Throughout this project, Haskell management, design, and construction teams worked closely with United’s CRE, development, and food safety teams. After extensive research and analysis, the group developed a packaging process and workflow, refined the design, obtained correct permits, and procured new equipment that was then installed, programmed and tested. After eight months of intense planning and construction, Haskell transferred the facility to United for production of prepackaged foods.

Haskell delivers $2± billion annually in Architecture, Engineering, Construction (AEC) and Consulting solutions to assure certainty of outcome for complex capital projects worldwide. Haskell is a global, fully integrated, single-source design-build and EPC firm with over 2,200 highly specialized, in-house design, construction and administrative professionals across industrial and commercial markets. With 20+ office locations around the globe, Haskell is a trusted partner for global and emerging clients.

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