It’s not every day that a $168 million dollar hotel project opens two months early. But that’s just what happened with the two-in-one Courtyard and Residence Inn LA Live project in downtown LA located next to the Los Angeles Convention Center. The dual branded development includes 218 rooms in a Marriott Residence Inn and 175 rooms in a Courtyard Marriott. So how was this early opening accomplished?
The contractor on the project, SODO Builders, wanted to find a way to create guest bathrooms that could be rapidly constructed but would also be cost-effective. When analyzing their last similar project, traditional bathroom construction and installation took about 10-12 weeks to complete. Within that timeframe, the punch list consumed approximately 3-4 weeks. The idea of using prefabricated bathroom pods was presented to them and they thought they’d give it the old ‘college try’. They contacted prefabrication expert Oldcastle SurePods™, A CRH Company, to provide their bathroom pods, and started the process.
“The use of bathroom pods was a great way to solve problems with the punch list work. The use of pods resulted in a streamlined punch list and faster vertical process through the building,” stated Steve Foley, Senior Superintendent, SODO Builders. “As a commercial contractor, we report a time savings of 8 weeks by incorporating Oldcastle SurePods™. I see more of the hotel construction industry becoming off-site fabrication.”
The mechanical team was also surprised at the time savings.“An unexpected benefit of using pods was that the flow of the job went faster and smoother. We moved to the next floor level much quicker and fewer RFIs were written” said Dan Medeiros – Designer/Detailer, Pan Pacific Mechanical. Definitely a time savings benefit.”
In addition to the time savings, using prefabricated bathroom pods reduces on site labor, increasing safety as there are fewer trades in the vicinity. This can also potentially reduce injuries on the job and their associated workers’ comp claims. On the factory floor, where the pods are prefabricated, strict safety measures guide construction. And building the bathroom pods indoors means there’s no delays for weather. It’s always warm and well lit in the factory.
The prefabricated bathrooms were assembled in Oldcastle SurePods™’s Madera, CA, facility, delivered to the job site and slid into the structure from the side of the exterior, prior to the erection of the 23-story building’s facade. The contractor said they could install up to 30 units per day.
Each bathroom was constructed using Marriott-approved and specified products per the client’s request. There is a hot and cold water hookup on top of the unit, and there’s also an electrical connection. The pods were delivered to the job site with all the finishes and fixtures preinstalled.
When it comes to construction, time is money. When it comes to compressing production schedules without sacrificing quality, prefabricated bathroom pods are a perfect choice.
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