2023 Awards Winner – Gold Building Construction: Bowdoin Construction Corp.

Project Name: Boston Analytical – Lab / Office Expansion
Owner: Boston Analytical
Design-Builder: Bowdoin Construction Corp.
Lead Designer: Ci Design 

Major Participants: Bowdoin Construction Corp., Crosspoint Associates, Ci Design, Summit Engineering, GPI, Denron Hall Plumbing & HVAC, Piquette & Howard Electric, Hampshire Fire Protection, New England Lab and Parameter Generation & Control.

Bowdoin Construction’s Boston Analytical project in Salem, NH, is a great example of Design- Build Done Right® through the integration and management of the Architectural and Engineering design process by Bowdoin’s Design-Build Department. 

Boston Analytical, the Life Sciences Division of Alpha Analytical, is a premier cGMP compliant, FDA & DEA registered, ISO Certified, pharmaceutical testing laboratory. Boston Analytical provides a variety of the highest quality, analytical testing services to support CMC for Drug Development and Release Testing. Boston Analytical operates in over 25,000 square feet of laboratory space. Equipped with only the most sophisticated and up-to-date analytical testing equipment, Boston Analytical’s facility is managed through a robust network of state-of-the-art information technology and data delivery systems. 

When Boston Analytical decided to expand their existing laboratory facilities they chose the design-build delivery system as a way to control cost, schedule, and meet their quality standards. Crosspoint, the Owner’s Project Manager, had contracted with CI Design for a schematic design solution for their Laboratory/Office Expansion of approximately 15,000 SF. Because the current facility was in use and active 24/7, the office and lab relocations were completed in (2) phases to minimize interruption to ongoing research. 

The project was bid and awarded with schematic bridging documents by CI Design and MEP narratives. With the skill of in-house Architects, Bowdoin successfully managed remaining document phases and coordinated and contracted with all consulting team members, including CI Design, MEP/FP Design-Build trades, and Civil and Structural Engineers. The success of this project is largely due to how well the team followed design-build principles. 

The stringent mechanical requirements for pressurization of the lab space and the requirement for outside air determined that the size of the new mechanical equipment would strain the current capacities of the structural and electrical systems. 

Recognizing the critical importance of the Mechanical and Electrical partners, Bowdoin elected to solicit trade partners who had in-house design capabilities and had experience designing and constructing similar facilities. Ultimately, they chose Denron Hall for HVAC and Plumbing, Piquette Howard for Electrical, and Hampshire Fire Protection for Fire Protection. 

Both Piquette Howard Electric and Hampshire Fire Protection had the advantage of having worked on the previous Boston Analytical project. Denron Hall proposed a unique mechanical design which utilized less specialized equipment that was more readily available and ultimately provided significant savings to the project. In order to validate the proposed design, Bowdoin engaged NV5 Engineers for a third-party review to ensure the design would meet the stringent design requirements needed for the new laboratory. 

One of the critical principles in Design-Build Done Right® is the need for a Design Integration Coordinator. Bowdoin’s Design Integration Coordinator was vital to the success of the project, due to her knowledge of laboratory design and her experience with the design-build delivery system She was engaged with their trade partners to finalize the scope during the design phase and to coordinate their activities once the project was under construction. 

The presence of Boston Analytical’s President and Facilities Director at all weekly design and construction meetings allowed for quick decisions during the design phase, which in turn allowed the project team to maintain the project schedule when changes were made – or unforeseen conditions arose during construction. 

This teaming was also important as they developed a phasing plan.. Working with their trade partners they were able to carefully coordinate activities that could have impacted their existing operations. 

When the initial budget was developed, Bowdoin devised several alternatives that could be done if there was money left in the budget. As it turned out there was, and ultimately, Boston Analytical decided to use these funds to solve a drainage issue in the existing parking lot, as well as paint the entire exterior of the building. 

The two primary challenges in meeting the schedule were implementing the two-phase schedule while not interfering with the existing lab operations and coordinating our work around the long lead time of materials.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.