Swarthmore College, Scaffolding Maxine Frank Singer Hall
This job started before the COVID-19 pandemic and was put on hold, like most construction in Pennsylvania. And when we came back to work – it was a NEW WORLD out there. Like everyone, we’ve had to adapt and adopt a new way of doing business.
New regulations to prevent the spread of the virus on construction sites are now the norm.
So much so, that when the Governor gave the go ahead for construction again we were called to install a second stair tower on the opposite end of this giant scaffold to follow the state’s new guidelines for keeping a safe work distance. And thus, the title of the song for this blog (at bottom).
This job is part of a very cool strategic redevelopment plan Swarthmore College is undertaking.
Maxine Frank Singer Hall is named for the pioneering molecular biologist and leader in science policy, ethics, and advocacy. In 2012, Swarthmore alumnus, Eugene Lang ’38 committed $50 million to the facility, which will bring new interdisciplinary connections and community gathering spaces to campus, and shape how scientific knowledge is discovered, expanded, and applied at Swarthmore. Singer Hall will also be one of only a very few science buildings named for a woman on an American college campus.
Maxine Frank Singer, Swarthmore College Class of 1952, is known for her contributions to solving the genetic code, her role in the ethical and regulatory debates on recombinant DNA techniques, and her leadership of Carnegie Institution of Washington. In 2002, Discover magazine recognized her as one of the 50 most important women in science. She majored in chemistry (and minored in biology) at Swarthmore College. (Courtesy of Wiki)
Let’s talk about Superior Scaffold’s part in this job. We started in phase one by helping remove the Egleson murals from Hicks Hall (that was being demolished) to make way for phase two of this project. You can read about that job here.
The first phase of construction was completed in summer 2019, which includes space for the Department of Engineering and teaching and research laboratory and space for the Biology and Psychology departments. This is part of phase 2, which includes faculty and staff offices for the Departments of Biology and Psychology and the shared commons and outdoor spaces.
Superior was called in by GC, Skanska, to provide the scaffolding to get crews inside the new atrium to finish the walls, ceilings and skylights. The system scaffold was 120 feet long by 40 feet high and roughly 20 feet wide and followed the contour of the atrium (tapering down to 15 feet wide).
The top level was decked in solid complete with guardrail and toe board providing a safe and stable work deck or dance floor for all the trades. We originally installed a system stair tower at one end but were called out during the pandemic to install a second stair tower on the opposite end to give crews the safe separation needed for the new COVID-19 regulations.
The biggest challenge was the load in. It was a tight job site and everything had to be loaded in on carts from the one end. The second challenge was getting around all of the other trade’s materials. Other than that, the job went off without a hitch and everyone is adapting to the new way of working during this pandemic.
We are proud to be a part of the growing Swarthmore College legacy.
If you need scaffolding or access call Pat today at 215 743-2200 and he’ll sing you the new Superior Scaffold jingle; a nice little ear-worm that will make your “feets” move all day long just like the following song. For more jobs visit www.superiorscaffold.com.
And with the COVID and the second stair tower, it made me think of this song by the Offspring – so here you go. Enjoy.
More info about Maxine Frank Singer Hall.
Remember, these photos were taken as the scaffold was being erected (not completed)
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