Superior Scaffold Blog
(All things scaffolding...)

Superior Scaffold was called in to provide heavy-duty shoring for the New AAA building conversion into apartments.  And when we say heavy duty, we mean it.  The design for this 4 story building calls for adding an additional 8 FLOORS!!! Wow.

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The building at 21st and Market (2040 Market) was built in 1968 and was a 5 story structure (including a floor of underground parking)

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PCM Property Group and their architects Stephen Varenhorst Architects needed the best in the business when they had to shore up the existing structure, remove the old columns and replace them with new, even larger supports.

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Superior salesman, Anthony Pini, worked with PCM to design a custom solution using heavy-duty kip shores that would allow enough room for crews to work in and around each column.  Most of the pics show at least a 25 Kip (25,000 Lb) load capability.  You can see where crews set up to pour new heavy duty footers and Superior gave them plenty of room while still shoring up the floor above.

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The real challenge was that the engineers kept changing the size and scope of the building footers as they added new floors.  At one time Superior had to shore up the entire length of the building to support the additional weight above.  Instead of shoring up one portion and then removing the old footer and pouring a newer larger one (able to handle more weight), and then moving to the next one, engineers decided to remove all of the footers in one fell swoop and pour them all at the same time…

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Think about that for a second…  That means that the ENTIRE weight of the building is being supported by our steel beams and shoring columns.  Sounds wonderful, and hey, we always accommodate…  So after several site changes we settled on a solution and put it into place.  We shored up the entire building while the new, stronger, larger, more incredible ones were poured to support the additional 8 floors that were about to be added on top of the structure.  We rocked.  It rocked.  Everything was a huge (and I mean huge) success.

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Several sections needed shoring; the larger exposed areas that where going to be modified to handle the new structure above, and then the smaller sections tucked back in the lower floors.  Superior provided shoring support for both areas.

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When it’s all said and done this building will have 282 units and will be the largest number of new apartments in the past two years.  It will also increase the square footage from 120K to 300K.

To read more click on the following links.

http://corporate.pmcpropertygroup.com/node/108

http://philadelphiaheights.wordpress.com/2011/08/02/large-new-apartment-development-on-market-street-west/

http://www.bizjournals.com/philadelphia/blog/natalie-kostelni/2012/06/pmc-making-progress-on-turning-aaa.html

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Scaffolding walkway at Chestnut Hill Hospital in Philadelphia, PA

Here’s a nifty little job.  Something you might not see everyday: An Interior Canopy. scaffold rental philadelphia, scaffolding rental philadelphia, superior scaffold Now, you might be asking yourself, why would Superior Scaffold put something that is normally outside on the sidewalk, inside a hospital? scaffold rental philadelphia, scaffolding rental philadelphia, superior scaffold  scaffold rental philadelphia, scaffolding rental philadelphia, superior scaffold It’s simple, really – Chestnut Hill Hospital needed to remain open for business while repair crews replaced the skylights in the entire lobby and vestibule.  By putting what amounts to a canopy or sidewalk shed inside, doctors, patients, visitors and guests can all pass safely through the entrance while work continues overhead. It’s business as usual, as we say in the industry.  I’ll post some pics of the all glass ceiling when I get them. scaffold rental philadelphia, scaffolding rental philadelphia, superior scaffold Chestnut Hill Hospital is a community-based teaching hospital with 164 beds offering a range of inpatient and outpatient, diagnostic and treatment services in Northwest Philadelphia. Superior is the best in the business when it comes to canopies / sidewalk sheds.  Call (215) 743-2200 for information.


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Superior Scaffolds for Jesus

America for Jesus, (One Nation Under God, Inc.) called Superior Scaffold to provide the scaffolding for their giant assembly at the Independence Mall, Philadelphia, PA Friday 9.28 (7pm – midnight) and Saturday 9.29 (9am – 5pm).

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Superior was called in to provide much of the scaffolding support including 10 giant towers spread out all acrros the giant mall.  Eight of those towers are for speakers, lights and video units and 2 are for speakers and cameramen who will be videotaping the events.

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2000 pound counter weights were added the bottom of the towers to help anchor and stabilize the structures.

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The mall sits adjacent to the Liberty Bell museum and directly in front of Independence Hall (where Superior provided the scaffold for the renovation).

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The organization is a coalition of ministries who unite to organize national calls to prayer for the sake of the church and the nation.

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It’s still not clear just how many people will attend this assembly but estimates have topped at over half a million people.  We will follow up with photos after the event.

If you have scaffolding needs or questions call Jesus’ right hand scaffold man

Pat McAndrew at (215) 743-2200 for all of your scaffold needs.


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Chapel inside of Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center, Camden, NJ

Here is another unique scaffolding job.  It just goes to show you that when you think you’ve seen it all – think again.  Here is a chapel inside of a hospital, and not just any hospital, mind you.  This is in the heart of Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center, Camden, New Jersey.

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And what makes this even cooler is that the altar literally sits directly below the statue of the
blessed Mother.  It’s 6 floors beneath the giant statue but it’s very close to being directly beneath
her; pretty darn cool if you ask me.  And you remember the Superior blog about
saving Our Lady of Lourdes?   Well, this is the same place.

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Except this time, it wasn’t quite a pressing emergency as after the earthquake.
But the earthquake certainly might have exacerbated the damage.

Superior Scaffold was called to erect a scaffold around the altar so repair crews
(Brandywine Historic Services) could get to the crumbling plaster on the ceiling.

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The challenge here was that the church had to remain open for daily services.
So, Superior Scaffold master, Pat McAndrew devised a way to use 10’ horizontal trusses
to span the altar so the good father could conduct mass.  They also used foam insulation
under the jacks to protect the vintage marble floor.

After starting work the repair crews discovered more damage and called Superior back to
enlarge the scaffold to reach the affected areas.

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The chapel gets to remain open (business as usual) and the repair crews get access to the ceiling.
It’s a win win for everyone involved.

From the Lady of Lourdes Hospital web site:

The Chapel is always open for patients, visitors and associates. Visible upon entrance to the main lobby, the hospital Chapel is at the very heart of the Medical Center. It is a place of scripture, worship and prayer from which comfort, grace and blessing flow into the halls and rooms of Lourdes. Mass is held daily at Noon. Special schedules for holidays are posted outside the chapel.


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Have scaffolding but aren’t sure how to use it?

Let Superior Scaffold train your workers on the proper use of that equipment.

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It sounds really simple, but every year we get photos like this one.  Our experts are the best in the business and can quickly train you on the safest way to utilize the equipment.

Call Superior Scaffold today at (215) 743-2200 to set up On-Site training or a class at our facility.

We are the scaffold industry leader in the tri-state area and with over 50 years in the business, and an impeccable safety rating, we know a thing or two about proper end user training.

Safety and use training is available for suspended scaffold, fixed scaffold and even mast climbers.

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Don’t win one of the scaffolding Darwin Awards.  Or worse, lose your life because you didn’t properly use the scaffold.

Call Superior Scaffold today.  (215)743-2200
520 East Luzerne St.
Philadelphia, PA  19124


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Our Lady of Lourdes blessed morning photograph

Superior Scaffold estimator Pat McAndrew was at Our Lady of Lourdes medical center early last week and snapped this gem of the Mother Mary statue in her full glory.  Yes, it’s an iphone picture but you can clearly see that she’s up and beaming once again.

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I particularly like the halo at the top.

Pat was at the medical center for another scaffold install we are doing up “air” (as they say in Philly).  I’ll get you details on that just as soon as them become available.

Until then – enjoy.

You can read the original article about saving our Lady of Lourdes here:

And the follow up article in scaffold magazine – here.


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Superior scaffolds St. Mary’s Ukranian Church, Mcadoo, PA

When  St. Mary’s Ukranian Church in Mcadoo, PA needed a scaffolding company to erect scaffold for painters to restore the exterior luster of their beloved church – they turned to Superior Scaffold.  Our experience with historic buildings, churches and structures has made us the tri-state leader in the scaffolding industry.

The contractor wanted a stair tower to access the scaffold and a nice sized storage deck.  And to eliminate ascending the scaffolding from the ground each time, Superior constructed a special walkway across the roof.

You will see the photos below but I think this Youtube video gives the best visual description.

At the front of the video you will see the newly painted surfaces.  Also, about halfway through you will see the scaffold going up and the freshly painted gold domes.  It’s quite impressive looking.

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St Mary’s Ukrainian Catholic ChurchMcadoo, PA – Catholic Church

http://www.facebook.com/pages/St-Marys-Ukrainian-Catholic-Church/121069767906788


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Superior Scaffold uses unique earth anchors to hold canopy in place.

So, not only did we help scaffold the building for the new support steel but we just installed the canopy at the entryway.  In the background, you can see the 5 story steel structure where our scaffolding used to be.  They are making great progress on the new addition at the Chester County Hospital, and we are grateful to be a part of such a unique project.  (See the original blogpost here.)

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And speaking of unique, this was a very cool and innovative way to tie-down a canopy.  It’s not something you see everyday.
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Normally, there are many places to tie-down a canopy to keep it stable and secured from the elements.  But as you can see from the pics there wasn’t much to hold on to out here in the front of the hospital.  On the one side, you see the large cement Jersey Barriers (no problem) but the opposite side just had blacktop.  And how would we tie into that?

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So our super duper team of engineers and builders came up with an awesome system to keep this baby anchored properly.

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Look at this little gem – called an Earth Anchor.  Aptly named for its ability to anchor just about anything down to the good ole’ blue planet.  If you look carefully, you will see an X type of bracket that has two tubes on it at 45 degree angles.  X.

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Long steel rods (about 2′ – 3’) are driven through those X tubes and down into the ground itself.  The idea is to create an apposing force in the soil that is virtually impossible to pull out.  “You would literally have to move something like 40 square feet of dirt to pull one of these ties from the clutches of mother earth,” said Superior Scaffold’s main man, Shawn MacDonald.

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And then, at the top of the X bracket is a fastener where the tie-downs hook in.  The canopy then can be ratcheted down to these brackets making it super stable and virtually impervious to high wind.

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Here are a few photos of the canopy (sidewalk shed) in place.

Superior Scaffold – innovative scaffolding solutions.  (215) 743-2200.  Philadelphia, PA

Chester County Hospital in West Chester, PA is embarking on a $45.2 million building project to increase inpatient bed capacity with 72 new private rooms and to install a new, state-of-the-art linear accelerator for the treatment of cancer.


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Amazing uses for scaffolding. Calpine energy turbine repair.

Every now and then, a really cool use for scaffolding comes across my desk, and this is one of those times.  Maybe I’m just genuinely curious as to how stuff works but I thought I’d pass this along.

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This is the top of giant electric turbine at the Calpine Energy, Delta, PA power plant.   The plant is a state-of-the-art, combined cycle, power generating plant powered mainly by natural gas.  The plant consists of 8 electric generators – and these photos are of one of those turbines!  Basically, these gigantic turbines spin around at amazing speed to produce electricity for cities and towns.

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Calpine called Superior Scaffold out to construct support scaffolding around one of the giant Siemens V84.2 turbines so the top could be removed and stored while work was done inside.  As you can see from the photos, just the top of the turbine is enormous.  Once inside the turbine, crews had to pull the entire thing apart to find the problem.  Once that was addressed workers had to reassemble the entire unit – but this time they welded counter weights on the turbine to keep it spinning up to a tolerance factor of 1000th of and inch.

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It always amazes me at the different uses for scaffold – and this is just another in a long list of cool applications.

For a more technical description of how their plant converts energy read this blurb from their website.

The plant works like this:  Steam for the steam turbines is generated in heat recovery steam generators – unfired boilers that get their heat from hot gas exhaust leaving the gas turbines. The combustion turbines, which primarily burn natural gas, can also run on low-sulfur diesel fuel oil. When combined, these two power cycles (the gas turbine and the boiler/steam turbine) create a highly fuel-efficient plant, consuming significantly less fuel than needed by a traditional fossil-fired boiler/steam turbine generator plant.  This conversion spins the turbines which in turn convert steam into electricity for Delta, PA customers.

Superior scaffold (215) 743-2200


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Superior Scaffold at Bachelors Barge Club (Est 1853), Philadelphia, PA.

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Bachelors boathouse #6, (built in 1893) is repairing part of the exterior of their house on Philadelphia’s historic Boathouse row.   Superior provided canopy protection for the side of the building while erecting system scaffold above – so crews could get access to the spots that needed repairing without hindering daily operations.

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This is a unique opportunity to see a before and after view of the repair process.  As you can see in the first series of photos taken by Superior estimator, Pat McAndrew, there are large cracks in the facade of the structure.  And you can see just where they are located on the building and where crews will have to get access to affect repairs.

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It’s Pat’s job to estimate the amount of man and materials it will take to finish the repairs.  And in many instances, it’s also his job to configure the best scaffolding approach to access the job.

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Here, he chose 767 Philly frames to construct a canopy (sidewalk shed) over the entryway so Bachelors members could use the building on a daily basis while work continued overhead.  This is a great way to keep business as usual for the buildings being worked on while creating a very stable platform for the work crews to complete their tasks above.

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Pat also chose a series of system scaffold on top of the canopy to create different levels, in essence, for better access.  He also added a hoist and access ladders on the ends giving the scaffolding two separate levels.  It’s all very stable and easy to get equipment up and down.

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We will provide you with the finished photographs once the work is complete.

If you need an estimate for anything scaffold related (scaffolding, scaffold services, shoring, facade work, inspection) just give Pat a call.  He’s one of the best in the business.  (215) 743-2200.

A brief history of Bachelors Barge Club.

The club originally housed its boats in a wooded shack on the north side of the Schuylkill River constructed for the imposing sum of $67.85.  Today its over 150 members row out of a stately brick boathouse constructed in 1893 on the original site, now known as #6 Boathouse Row.  The boathouse is also home to four high school rowing programs and the Wharton Graduate Crew.

Bachelors Barge has hosted high school rowing on a continuous basis since 1948 when Lower Merion initiated a rowing program.  Lower Merion was subsequently followed by Harriton High School, The Baldwin School, and Conestoga High School in that order.  Wharton Graduate is the most recent tenant to join Bachelors Barge however they have historical ties to the club going back to 1864 when George W. Wharton was an active member.

Home of Drexel crew.

Boathouse Row is a historic site located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on the east bank of the Schuylkill River, just north of the Fairmount Water Works and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It consists of a row of 15 boathouses housing social and rowing clubs and their racing shells. Each of the boathouses has its own history, and all have addresses on both Boathouse Row and Kelly Drive (named after famous Philadelphia oarsman John B. Kelly, Jr.).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boathouse_Row