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Layton Uses Design-Build Process to Reach Milestone Date on New Pinedale Elementary School

Nov. 30, 2009

Layton Construction is building a new $23 million, 82,000-square-foot elementary school in Pinedale, Wyo. Design and construction for the project--the first public design-build project in the state of Wyoming--began simultaneously and within five months from the date of contract, the design was complete and the project team met its major milestone of having the facility completely dried-in by late October in preparation for Pinedale's long, harsh winter season.

Pinedale is situated at an elevation of 7,200 feet above sea level and has a seven month winter season--leading to obvious construction challenges. Layton and Sandstrom Associates were awarded the contract to build the new school after the Wyoming School Facilities Commission (WSFC) and the Sublette County School District #1 determined that using design-build would be the only way to meet the needs of the project budget and schedule due to the short construction season and the need to complete the school as quickly as possible for a growing population of students.

Layton and Sandstrom have displayed excellent team communication and collaboration in order to achieve milestone goals for the project. Having the facility completely dried-in before the long, cold winter started in earnest will allow the project team to focus on the interior work even while the weather is inclement outside.

John Alley, Layton Construction vice president and a DBIA, gives much of the credit for the project's success thus far to the school district's careful attention and study given to the design-build process. Although it was a first time design-build experience, Sublette County and the WSFC knew the process well and how best to approach it.

"Power comes from a team that establishes trust early. We have all focused on trust that has led to milestone achievements," Alley says. " We estimate we logged a thousand hours as a team programming to meet each and every need of over 2,300 items required in the RFP. The time spent planning was a great investment. We've eliminated surprises. We understand the documents. It's always cheaper to plan on paper and have the answers than to have questions and have to make changes in the field."

Crews anticipate to complete construction of Pinedale Elementary School in late August 2010.

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