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Best Office Project: Cancer Center Finished Well Ahead of Schedule

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Vaughn Construction began work on the MD Anderson Cancer Center Mid Campus Building and Garage in September 2008, completing construction in February 2012. The $288-million project includes a 1.4-million-sq-ft Class A administrative office building for more than 120 different departments as well as a 3,000-vehicle garage on a 5.78-acre site.

Photo by Richard Muniz Photography
MD Anderson Cancer Center Mid Campus Building and Garage.
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The building is located between a Texas Medical Center parking lot to the east and the construction site of a new city street to the west, which included major underground utilities to provide critical flood protection and power redundancy to the Texas Medical Center.

A utility trench and tunnel were also constructed along the east side of the building in the construction area built by the Texas Medical Center's thermal energy company, TECO, that provides power, chilled water and steam to a majority of the medical center. The project team coordinated with the City of Houston, the Texas Medical Center and TECO along with each of their contractors on a daily and weekly basis.

Retention and trench shoring plans for each of the three entities had to be coordinated between the 72-in. storm lines, 60-in. chilled water lines and 28-ft-deep building foundation excavation, along with each of the engineered systems incorporated in each entity's construction zones.

Several LEED initiatives were included on the project as well, such as an air-handling unit condensation collection system that collects and stores water in a 6,000-gallon holding tank beneath the building for use in irrigation.

Additionally, at the owner's request, Phase II construction of the building had to be finished at the same time as Phase I, 11 months ahead of the originally agreed-upon schedule. To meet this deadline, the construction team developed a fast-track approach to project delivery and the contractor increased staff.

Along with a more integrated information exchange between the owner and design-build team, this approach resulted in a net cost savings because the total project duration decreased by a year.

Key Players

Owner: MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston

General Contractor: Vaughn Construction, Houston


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