Superior Scaffold Blog
(All things scaffolding...)

This is brilliant. Great job Carhartt.

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A carefully crafted blog about women getting things done, carving, building, scaffolding, painting, etc – but the kicker is that they are all wearing Carhartt clothing.

Well done.  A very smart campaign.

ABOUT.


Jimi Hendrix might have been thinking of other things when he wrote those lyrics but if he was around today in the new Dover High School auditorium (Dover, DE) he’d be singing about Superior Scaffold’s ability to get crews up to the ceilings of very tall structures, just like this state-of-the-art hall.

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And that’s just what we did on this very cool job.  Crews needed a way to get to very top of the new auditorium so Superior devised a system scaffold platform that was able to span the entire length and width of the space from the stage across the sloping floor all the way to the back.

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System towers were built and then spanned with 14 foot horizontal trusses.  The entire surface was covered in plywood making a dance floor-like surface for crews and their equipment to gain easy access to those hard to reach spaces.  What’s great about these photos is that they are 30′ in the air – but the super steady platform makes it look like they are sitting on the ground.

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It’s a 2 phase process.  The first phase was designed to get crews to the ceiling for mechanicals, electric, etc.  Then phase 2 will drop the entire platform down 16 feet so they can install a special suspended material.

http://www.ediscompany.com

You can see the sheer size of the area to “kiss the sky” so to speak.   Who knows, maybe Jimi Hendrix would have even played here…
(rendering courtesy of http://www.ediscompany.com)

This is all part of the $114 million new high school being built on a 100 acre site just west of Dover along Rt. 8.  The school will be home to 1,800 students.  It’s slated to open in September 2014.

 

See these sites for additional information:

http://www.doverpost.com/article/20130531/NEWS/130539988/1001/NEWS

http://www.ediscompany.com/Current-Projects/New-Dover-High-School

 

When you have a very special building that requires some high flying expertise – call Superior Scaffold – “We’ll get you – up aire,” says Superior estimator, Pat McAndrew.

Call (215) 743-2200 today.


Superior Scaffold has entered into a deal with Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES), to provide scaffolding support for a turnaround at their large Philadelphia plant.  This is the Point Breeze refining complex – which is the old Sunoco plant in South Philly.

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Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) is the longest continuously operating refinery on the East Coast, processing 330,000 barrels of crude oil per day into various refined products.

Superior will provide all of the necessary scaffolding support during this shutdown.  “Our guys are currently working with PES planning and organizing the massive turnaround so everything goes smoothly,” said Lou Collins, Superior Scaffold estimator.   “We anticipate about a 12 week pre-to-post timeframe to complete this job.”

For those who don’t know, a turnaround at a refinery is a planned, periodic shut down (total or partial) of a refinery plant or unit to perform maintenance, repair and overhaul operations and to inspect, test and replace process materials and equipment.

Superior will be working with the exchangers, drums, towers, internal reactors and Re-gen and much more all around the complex.

We are proud to bring our 50 years plus of refinery experience to one of Philadelphia’s finest companies.  And will keep you posted as we move through this turnaround process.

For all of your industrial scaffolding needs call Lou Collins @ 215 279-8123 or lou@superiorscaffold.com.


The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology | Penn Logo
at 3260 South Street | Philadelphia, PA 19104 | (215) 898-4000 has just completed
phase 2 of it’s extensive renovations.

U of P, University of Pennsylvania, Superior Scaffold, (215) 743-2200
Widener Lecture Hall now looks like this after a complete restoration – thanks to the many craftsman and companies that took part – including us – Superior Scaffold.

U of P, University of Pennsylvania, Superior Scaffold, (215) 743-2200

The completion of the Widener Lecture Hall marks the end of the second phase of the Penn Museum of Archeology and Anthropology’s $15 million renovations of its west wing, which began in 2010.

U of P, University of Pennsylvania, Superior Scaffold, (215) 743-2200

This is what it looked like when Superior was brought in to provide scaffolding support so crews could get to the arched ceiling for mechanicals, electric, HVAC, sprinklers, and more.  The challenge was to get workers to the hard to reach areas while allowing the ground below to remain open for access.

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Superior used system scaffold towers connected with trusses up top to free up space for other trades below.  Everything was decked in high above the ground to make a safe working platform.

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The new space got air conditioning for the first time in its history, as well as new windows, lighting, and a state of the art audio visual system.

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Built originally as a lecture hall in 1899, Widener Lecture Hall has most recently been used for woodshop exhibitions.

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The first phase of the renovations of the west wing of the Museum was the renovation of the second and third floor galleries.
Following the completion of the Widener Lecture Hall, the third phase of the project will be the renovation of the conservation labs and teaching labs, which are on the first floor of the building.

For more information check out these sites:

http://www.penn.museum/

http://www.thedp.com/article/2013/05/penn-museum-completes-phase-two-of-renovations

http://www.penn.museum/press-releases/610-penn-museum-begins-a-major-renovation-including-climate-control-of-its-west-wing.html

http://www.penn.museum/upcoming-exhibits/111-support/capital-campaign/840-building-renovations-project.html

For all of your scaffold / scaffolding needs call Superior Scaffold (215) 743-2200


This is one of those, once in a lifetime, cool jobs that you just have to brag about.  Superior Scaffold was called out to the Campbell’s Soup Worldwide Headquarters in Camden, NJ to rig a special scaffolding in the boardroom.

Campbell's Soup, Andy Warhol, superior scaffold, 8916

This is the same boardroom where one of  the original Andy Warhol Campbell Soup Can paintings lives.
Andy Warhol campbell's soup can

And even cooler was the job.  We had to come up with system to allow crews to change the ceiling tiles over the handmade wood table that resides in the boardroom.  Sounds simple, right?  Not really.  The table is 8 feet wide by 30 feet long and could not be moved.  It was hand picked by the Dorrance family (heir to the Campbell fortune) and cost over $100,000.

Campbell's Soup, Andy Warhol, superior scaffold, 8841  Campbell's Soup, Andy Warhol, superior scaffold,0688

Needless to say, they needed a company with a history of preserving priceless artifacts to erect scaffolding around this table without causing any damage.

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The table was first protected with poly, then foam, and then plywood as a precaution.

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Superior built scaffold over and around the table using 2 foot wide X 34’ long towers on either side and then connected them with 10’ trusses.  This made a solid platform.  “Then we decked it in solid – so the crews would have a nice safe place to work,” said Superior estimator, Pat McAndrew.

They decided to install long life light bulbs while they were up there.

The job came off without a hitch and the Warhol is back presiding over the elegant table (with new lighting and ceiling tiles in place).

And just for fun – I couldn’t resist:

http://www.campbellsoupcompany.com/


Temple University Performing Arts Center Dome Repair

In the heart of Philadelphia sits an incredible treasure – the Temple Performing Arts Center.   Purchased in 1974 by Temple University the Baptist Temple was designated as historic and a landmark building.  It underwent an extensive remodeling and has since hosted many great performing artists.

Superior Scaffold was called in by Temple University to help with the renovation of the two copper domes on top of the center.  Over the years, the copper had oxidized and the wood beneath had fallen into disrepair. It was Superior Scaffold’s job to get the crews up there to do the renovation.

The first challenge was to fashion a decorative but functional entryway / canopy that not only showed off the grandeur of the classic building but supported the tremendous load of scaffolding above.

  

“It not only had to allow pedestrians access to the center but it had to look great and allow crews to reach the top to work on the new copper domes,” said Tom Creighton of Superior.

  

The additional challenge was not to damage any of the decorate artifacts or stonework on the roof.

 

Superior has more experience working with historic structures in Philly and is the best when delicate items need to be considered. (see Independence Hall)

Superior crews built a super-stable platform extending all the way around the base of the dome and built two work decks above the entire diameter of the domes – allowing renovation crews total access.

The crews had to strip off the decaying copper and rebuild the wood support beneath.

The new domes look amazing and we will post a photo as soon as we can.  Temple University is one of our   favorite clients and we were honored to help with their renovation.

Historic buildings are our speciality.  Don’t hesitate to contact Superior Scaffold
for all of your scaffolding needs (215) 743-2200 – Ask for Tommy.


On January 26th, Superior Scaffold was proud to help bring to the East Coast one of the most incredible Roman Mosaics ever unearthed.  The challenge to get them inside the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology was something of an engineering marvel taking scaffolding teams, crane operators, art curators, engineers, and scores of people.


Waiting at the door

But first…      A real-life “Cover up”.

In 1996, workmen constructing a new highway in Lod, Israel (near modern-day Tel Aviv), made a shocking discovery: a 1,700 year old Roman mosaic under the surface of the road. At that time, the Israel Antiquities Authority conducted a rescue excavation that revealed a full series of mosaic floors, measuring roughly 50 feet long by 27 feet wide. Conservators provided preliminary treatment of the mosaics, but they were then reburied until funding could be secured for the full scientific excavation and conservation. In 2009, excavators unearthed the Lod Mosaic once again. The mosaics were then separated into panels and rolled away from the earth.  Today, they remain in near perfect condition.  Three of these panels are on display in Unearthing a Masterpiece.

Csq_0701

This piece is very unique because it lacks human figures.  It was likely commissioned by a high-standing Roman official for his private home. Alluding to gladiatorial games, the mosaic panels depict scenes of hunting, trading, and marine life.

And because these tiles date back to 300 CE and are some of the most complete, well-preserved, and largest Roman mosaics ever found, everyone involved wanted to keep them that way.  So the call went out to Superior Scaffold to help get them into the building.  Piece of cake, right?  Wrong.  Follow the photos below to see just what was involved.  Now, we were just one cog in a very important machine.  But our piece was of utmost importance.

A crane hoists a crate onto Superior's platform
A crane hoists a crate onto Superior’s platform

These tiles were so large that they had to be placed into 7 gigantic wooden crates and shipped to Philadelphia.  And on the morning of January 26, 2013 two large box trucks arrived and blocked South Street in front of the Museum.

Crews position the first crate

The biggest challenge on this job, that required weeks of careful planning, was that these crates couldn’t just be waltzed through the loading dock and up to the third floor where they were going to be displayed.  They were way too big and heavy to fit.

A crane hoists the crate to the platform

Another crate coming over

They had to be hoisted by a 100 foot crane up off of South Street and deposited onto a giant 16’ tall platform that Superior built over the main stairs and Warden Garden Coy pond that straddled two giant sliding wooden doors accessing the grand staircase on the third floor into the Pepper Gallery.  Wow, that was a mouthful.  But seriously, look at the photos.  Superior’s platform allowed the giant crates to be maneuvered directly inside to the display area where curators could uncrate the masterpiece and put it together for display.

Platform at Museum  Plaform from 3rd floor looking out  Platform from 3rd floor looking in

Sitting on top of the system scaffold, Superior used 9’ aluminum stringers crossed with solid plank and then topped with plywood.

Then entire unloading process took approximately 6 hours.  Of course, our part started long before the trucks arrived and lasted well after the crates were unpacked.

Tiles being assembled inside
Tiles being assembled inside

In the end, the Museum safely unloaded, unpacked, and assembled the Mosiac in time for their ribbon cutting ceremony on February 10, 2013 to start the exhibit (Unearthing a Masterpiece:  A Roman Mosiac from LOD, Israel) which runs for a limited time.

photo (40)

Estimator Pat McAndrew not only oversaw the installation but also attended the opening where he took these photos of the famous Mosaic.

Superior will be back out assembling the same scaffolding in May when the exhibit is packed up again and shipped to the Louvre in Paris.  After a short time there, it will make the trip to Israel and it’s final resting place in a specially built museum.  So see it while you can

And a shout out to Bob Thurlow in charge of Traveling Exhibits at Penn Museum for some of the great photos of the crates going in.

If you would like more information about the unearthing of the LOD Mosaic click here.


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Franklin Institute and the Emergency Egress

Sounds like something from the minds of Jerry Bruckheimer and Michael Bay

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The Franklin Institute is a museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and one of the oldest centers of science education and development in the United States, dating to 1824. The Institute also houses the Benjamin Franklin National Memorial.  They are currently hosting the Titanic Artifact Exhibition – and they are putting a new addition onto the side of the building.  This is where Superior Scaffold comes in.

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The needed an emergency egress – to put it simply, an emergency exit stairwell from the second floor down to the ground.  Sounds simple, right?  Of course not.  Why?  Because the ground beneath the proposed emergency stairwell is being excavated.  Something about spy tunnels from the old Manhattan project that run from the basement of the Franklin Institute across the street into the basement of another building.  Now, this is just conjecture offered up from some unnamed sources on the job.  But just think about it.  How cool would that be?

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Since I can neither confirm nor deny these allegations we can only assume that Oppenheimer and his crew were shuttling top secret plans back and forth while developing the world’s most destructive weapons.  Or it just could be that something beneath the ground needs to be removed or updated for structural reasons.  Stairs, water pipes, electrical, who knows?  You make the call???  Maybe Jerry Bruckheimer should make a movie.  Superior Scaffold stars in:   Ha.

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Either way, the egress could not be built straight from the second floor down to the ground.  This is where the creative chaps at Superior Scaffold come in and design a scaffold that spans the 36’ area that’s being excavated and then takes you down to ground level.  Since they had to span the gap – they designed a free standing 4′ X 5′ X14′ high unit that sits 40’ away from the exit of the building.

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You can see where Superior engineer Bob Robinson called for a thru-bolted channel on the side of the building to carry the giant 40’ steel beams.  Then on top of those beams they constructed a 5’ wide walkway that takes people out and over the excavation below.

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So when you look out of the second floor about to exit you will see a walkway that spans the excavation below, completely covered and hand railed.   On the other side of the deck are the stairs that take you down.  Problem solved.

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And since it was free standing, the guys put a roof on it, added hand rails and debris netting around the sides to knock down the elements.  It’s quite a lovely emergency egress.

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You see, it’s the simple things in life that make people happy.  Superior is the best at coming up with functional solutions that make clients happy.

http://www2.fi.edu/

http://www.visitphilly.com/museums-attractions/philadelphia/the-franklin-institute/


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A smoking hot expansion at Holt’s Cigar Company

When you are in Philly and you want a Cigar there is only ONE name – Holt’s Cigar Company in Center City.  Founded in 1898, Holt’s has been synonymous with the region’s finest imported premium handmade cigars.

Holt's Cigar Company, front-walnut-st

Nothing defines Holt’s Cigar Company more clearly than its Center City Philadelphia flagship retail location where for a hundred years, cigar lovers have flocked to the friendly confines and relaxing atmosphere of the company’s quality cigar shop. The ambiance and aromas, as well as one of the nation’s largest walk-in humidors and luxurious smoking lounge attracts thousands of cigar aficionados and novices alike to Holt’s Cigar Company.

Because of high demand they are expanding again.  And with space being limited at their Center City location (1522 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, Pa 19102) they decided to extend out into the back alley.  To do this they needed some expert help – so they called Superior Scaffold.

superior scaffold, scaffold rental, scaffolding rental, solutions, construction, inspection, PA, philadelphiaHolt's cigar company expansion, 32
What it looked like before phase 2 went up.
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Obstacles on the neighbor’s back wall.

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The entryway off of the street.

Look at the photos.  There is very little room to work with in that tiny little alley.  Access was a huge challenge.  As was the two sections that had to be built and then connected to make the finished product.  And on top of that – Superior had to go to the business directly behind Holt’s to see if they would let them erect scaffolding so crews could get to and finish the exterior of the new edition on the back of Holts.  I know it’s hard to see but just imagine, if you will, Holts blowing out the back of their warehouse and butting up right against the opposing neighbor’s back wall – Neighbor working with neighbor to get this done.

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Back of Holt’s where the expansion is – see the L shape to the right.
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Superior Scaffold’s engineer, Bob Robinson.

Superior engineer, Bob Robinson, and estimator Pat McAndrew, had to devise a way to get the support needed in around this existing roof without actually placing scaffolding on top of it.  Robinson devised a plan to rest the entire scaffolding on the existing capstone and actually bolt channels into the old brick of the neighbor’s wall. This would give necessary support and enough room for everyone to work comfortably in the confines of the alley.  They decided to erect it in two phases.

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Looking at phase 2 resting on capstones.
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Protecting the capstone sitting on the cement.
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Attaching channels to 100 year old wall – support rails in brick.
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A view below the stringers and deck – looking underground.

Phase one is the side where these photos were taken.  It’s looking out from Holt’s new addition.  This section was 4’ wide X 10’ long X 40’ high.  It faced the studded wall of the new edition, pretty straight forward stuff.  Phase 2 was the harder leg and would be connected by 3’ outriggers giving crews access to each section.
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New studs in place at the top level.
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Phase one completed.
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At the top in between the two buildings. The new addition on the left.

The second phase, the upper section, was 4’ wide X 23’ long and 30’ high and would be built over the existing roof.  (or onto) pic 33 and would go all the way up the side of the neighbor’s structure – about another 30 feet. It would allow crews to do the exterior finish work on the opposite wall on Holt’s new addition.

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The second phase, the lower section, was 4’ wide X 10’ feet long X 40’ high.

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Looking down onto phase 2 building up from the roof below.
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The top level of the expansion – 40′ high.

The two sections were connected by 3’ outriggers giving crews access to each section.

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Scaffolding around obstructions.

There were several obstructions that had to dealt with like the old exhaust unit.  The new steel for the wall was bolted to the old brick wall for support.  Crews will fill in the old brick wall when everything comes back down.

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Attaching channels to 100 year old wall – support rails in brick.

Every piece of gear, scaffolding, trusses, etc had to come through a tiny portal off of the side street and carried through a tiny access way into the back alley.  There, it had to be assembled and erected with great care.

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Entryway to the back of the building. Very narrow.
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The dungeon where all things had to pass.

Needless to say that both phases went up without a hitch.  Another Superior solution.

Superior Scaffold (215) 743-2200


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Going off the deep end with scaffolding…

The Princeton Medical Center at Plainsboro, NJ is adding on to their illustrious hospital with two new rehabilitation pools.   The crews needed to get access to the ceiling to do some repairs and additions.  Well, with swimming pools spanning the entire room it makes it a bit difficult to reach up that high.

So they called Pat McAndrew at Superior Scaffold and said, “Help.”   Since they had spent most of their budget on these incredible pools they were looking for a low cost alternative to just scaffolding the entire pools all the way up to the ceiling.   They also wanted to use Baker/Painter scaffolds to roll from one end of the pool area ceiling to another.

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So, they creatively devised a plan that would put an 8’ scaffolding tower down into the center of the large pool from the 3’ shallow end down to the 9’ deep end.  They used 8’ horizontal trusses at deck height and then ran aluminum joists from side walls to trusses at 16” centers.  The entire thing was then topped off with a deck of ¾” plywood.  This would allow the baker scaffold to roll freely around the entire room while allowing crews to reach to the ceiling.  You can see just how wide and deep this room is.

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Now, the small pool was a bit different.  They rested aluminum joists on the concrete side walls at 16” centers and then topped that off with plywood.  Since it was only 18’ in diameter the aluminum joists would be able to support all of the weight put upon them.

Bingo, bango, bongo… another Superior solution and satisfied customer.  Superior specializes in creative solutions for scaffolding problems.  Call 215 743-2200 to see what Superior can do for you.