The most critical challenge in management of the project was achieving high-quality finishes from the trades for the custom and unique features that were part of the design, despite the low-bid delivery that can lead to shortcuts. Examples of high-end areas include a custom wood-coffered ceiling in the Library Reading Room, a uniquely elaborate Children’s Theater within the Library replicating the 16th Century Laurentian Library by Michelangelo, curved exterior walls made of French limestone plaster, a curvaceous exterior ceremonial stair case with built-in seating and handrail with integral lighting and creation of new park space atop a new underground garage.
Heery addressed concerns about delivering the high quality finishes on the project from several angles, including development of a rigorous and thorough Quality Assurance/Quality Control specification and consistent enforcement of it. In the spec Heery documents a three-pronged approach to all trade work: Preparatory, Initial and Follow-up. All parties—Design Team, Management Team and GC—participated in the QA/QC program, which addressed each step completely prior to start. In its review of the building, the Los Angeles Times architecture critic was impressed—“the library….has managed to navigate the punishing low-bid, public-sector construction process without sacrificing its ambition or design personality.”
Even though the library project was the signature structure in the City’s capital program, the budget was limited. Heery suggested the design team consider French limestone plaster on the building facade in lieu of the architect’s expensive faceted stone design. After joint investigation, it was determined that the product could achieve the architect’s preferred smooth curved appearance and fit the budget.
The low-bid environment encouraged the GC to offer many opportunities to save money and time, and Heery had to balance the potential gains against the effect on building quality. One example involved temporary heat pumps, which were installed in the building to gain the necessary temperature control to begin the significant scope of millwork on the project, giving the GC a head-start on the finishes and minimized the overlap of too many trades-people working concurrently in the same area that can result in a lower quality of work.
Heery worked with the City, the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art and noted artists—including Kenny Scharf and Shepard Fairey--to ‘decorate’ the project-associated municipal parking structure resulting in three significant murals on exterior walls. This brought attention to the parking structure, which brought people and parking revenue.
Heery International, Inc. has provided program and construction management services for the City of West Hollywood's 25th Anniversary Capital Campaign Project for the past four years. Recently, construction was completed for one portion of the Capital Campaign, the new West Hollywood Library. I would like to commend Heery for a job well done and continuing to lead the City with its 25th Anniversary Capital Campaign Project work.
The West Hollywood Library project is an excellent example having been completed on time and within budget. My experience in dealing with Heery International, Inc. has been professional, thorough and courteous. The Heery team is a knowledgeable, well-run group and they always act in the owner's best interest. The Heery project team works well with the City and other project team members in coordinating construction efforts as well as budgetary compliance and change order review and negotiation.
ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER
City of West Hollywood