Precast Discussion: On

The precast concrete construction matter has been added to the Facilities Planning Committee agenda for the next meeting and the architect has been asked to be prepared to discuss the topic.

It is my understanding that the meeting planned for April 23 has been canceled, which puts the next meeting to the 30th.

12 thoughts on “Precast Discussion: On”

  1. Interesting side bar. The local company that does precast concrete, the one that Yinn mentioned a while back, has a request that will be on the agenda of a special meeting of the EDC next Tuesday. I suspect that council is asking the EDC to check the eligibility of this company for receiving incentives. Usually such requests are routine. More later, probably in a few days when I see some backup material.


  2. Thermashell would not save the district any money. Their product cannot be used as a structural member. A steel frame would have to be erected and then their product attached to it. With the price of steel, it’s not an option to use them. A company such as DuKane or ATMI precast could provide the necessary product at a cost savings to the taxpayer. I only know this because I was in the precast business for over ten years.

  3. Victor,
    We have overlapping threads with Yinn’s site and with Mac’s on the precast issue. What I think you are saying is Thermashell can’t do it but that DUkane can. Just checking as mac and ivan are looking for support, I’m pleased with their effort, but my knowledge of building materials is slightly less than what i know about modern quantum physics (both very low).

    Are there places that have comparison sheets on technical grounds between different institutional building materials


  4. Hi Victor, I knew about the steel framing and wondered how much that would change the cost picture. I also read that it requires 1/2 the usual number of roof joists.

  5. Back up material has arrived. It really does appear to be a routine case (we have certain rules for incentives and cases are routine that fit within these rules). Anyway I haven’t read all the stuff but will of course do so before the meeting.


  6. From my experiences, it doesn’t use 1/2 the amount of roof joists. Could be possibel though, I’ve just never had that particular experience. As far as cost goes, you’d be better off using brick and block compared to Thermashell and steel. However, companies such as DuKane would cut the cost significantly. I could run some numbers.

  7. Victor, that would be fantastic if you would.

    I’m going to go find the roof joist statement and make absolutely sure it was ThermalShell made that claim.

  8. Not necessarily. It all depends on the spans that you would be using. It would also depend on the pitch of the roof. The flatter it is the more support that would be needed. Usually the the steeper the roof, the more strength it would have. The steel is the roof could also be a frame for the Thermashell product itself depending on the type of a roof system. Probably a big demand for this product in certain applications but the DuKane product is basically in itself the structure once assembled.

    I really feel that the precast method is the way to go with regards to this high school. Costs would be substantial, speed in assembling would also cut construction time thus less interest monies spent on length of construction and less interest money spent because less borrowed. The greatest asset to this product is the additional safety that the children would receive since this product is certified as an above ground storm shelter. With this school planned for over 2,500 students, this is a great bonus. Must be why Plainfield is building 11 schools with this precast method.

  9. With our city police department needing to acquire some badly needed space for the work they do, precast could also be the answer here. Time cut down on construction. The police department could be certified as an above ground storm shelter for those who have nowhere to go. 30% plus savings on the construction materials and labor could make this budget out for our police.

    Maybe the mentioned adhoc group could work with the Chief and see how we can bring this baby in for them. Maybe work out a priority list on what is desperately needed and needs to be done during construction, want list that can be incorporated as we go, and of course the wish list.

    Maybe even put together a smaller version of the group who donated to the Kish Hospital and see if businesses and groups would donate a percentage to get this off the ground. There has to be a way to get this station done. I cannot believe how civil our police officers have been with the conditions the way they are right now at the police station. It is just a travesty. We must set some priorities in this community. Renew DeKalb or PD station, the station should be a priority. IMO

  10. Yinn,
    Precast wasn’t on our agenda for the 30th. The FPC is being charged to look at actual enrollment numbers for the future with regards to the slow down and where the children will actually come from. We do realize now that not many new students will be derived from new construction within DeKalb but Cortland looks like it may have some potentially high numbers along with the possibilty of Malta.

    Another problem is multiple families now residing in rental units such as homes, older houses in the older part of the community exp. being Littlejohn school and Cheseboro schools. We are trying to figure how to factor. It is my opinion that the Northern Trust development and the Irongate development will be slow to come on line and the school district as anticipate 6,000 homes between the two. I believe that Northern Trust is every bit of 4 to 5 years away from even truly thinking to begin and Irongate will be slow due to its developers (same as Bridges of Rivermist) have had slow sales in their current project.

    I am not speaking for these developers but that is just my observation being very involved in the residential sector of construction and being one of the builders at The Bridges of Rivermist along with being the developer/builder of The Gardens of Rivermist townhomes. It is just slow here in DeKalb and one of the reasons is the economy but you also have to factor the new high impact fees and now the increasing of permit, water, and sewer hook up fees.

    I know that there is a need for the fees and I fully understand the communities feelings with development and fees. I’m not going to change that but when the school district is anticipating these 6,000 homes being on line within 10 years, I say NO WAY. This brings up the big concern. With these homes not built, who is going to pay the school bonds? We need the new construction but there is where the Catch 22 comes in. Well to get back on topic.

    The school administration has formed an advisory committee whose sole purpose is to discuss materials for the high school. Their thoughts is that the FPC should focus on Plan 2 (next referendum) and the enrollment numbers. I say, if we don’t concentrate fully on the current project and do right by the voters, there will be NO Plan 2. I do think that some feel that this is a way to get us precasters off to the side and sort of diluted from the process. This architect is truly focused on building this high school for every bit of $88.5 million and she will do all she can to win her way. If this architect worked for my company, she and her company would be FIRED!

    I’m truly hoping that it is still very open at the top when it comes to making a decision for using the best products for this school and to also be watching the dollars spent. In my opinion and actually 100’s of school districts in the midwest, precast has been the choice because of speed, safety, low maintenance through the future years, and up to 30% cost reduction in construction costs. Bottom line, if we build this school for less dollars, her architect firm makes less money as they are paid a percentage of the cost of the building. I say, save the money and just give them a bonus for actually saving us dollars. We still end up better off.

    This needs to become a community topic because the amount of money that is actually spent here now could come back to haunt all homeowners within the next 4 years.

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