The Paramount Fort Lauderdale Beach, a $100 million-plus high-rise condo under construction in Florida, is the first luxury residential tower to be built on Fort Lauderdale Beach in a decade. It is also the first tower that Go-Tilt Construction of Deerfield Beach is undertaking with the use of the latest concrete placing system by Putzmeister America, Inc. (Putzmeister). The system showcases the most progressive technology and helps further advance the contractor's entry in the high-rise market.
The 18-story condo, boasting a prime oceanfront location on Florida’s Gold Coast, will rise on the site of the former Howard Johnson hotel, once popular with spring-break revelers. With amazing views of the endless Atlantic shoreline, the development’s setting offers sophisticated city living within walking distance of popular area restaurants, boutique shops and entertainment venues. Residences will range from 1,934 to 3,500 square feet (180 to 325m²), with prices starting at $1.2 million. Situated on two acres (8,100m²), the extravagant condo is designed to provide the ultimate in five-star luxury with a desirable beachfront lifestyle.
The upscale project is under the direction of general contractor Stiles Construction of Fort Lauderdale, well known in Southeast Florida for its reputable design and build services. Stiles had already established a solid working relationship with Go-Tilt for handling their tilt-up, concrete foundations and slabs, as well as poured-in-place projects. They would now rely upon the concrete contractor, with a decade in the concrete business, to place 34,000 total cubic yards (26,000m³) of concrete for a high rise.
The project would not be typical, as standing 18 stories high in a rounded tower to maximize ocean views, the Paramount would offer its own set of challenges. This included forming and placing concrete to accommodate the building's iconic architecture, as well as overcoming difficult job site conditions. Go-Tilt was ready to take the project and their business to the next level.
The benefit of progressing into an existing market is that the contractor could take advantage of the latest technological advancements when purchasing all new equipment. While researching products, Go-Tilt sought input from both Thomas Concrete Machinery, Inc. of Miami, distributor of Putzmeister products for more than 50 years, and the Putzmeister Special Application Business group. The challenges of the Paramount were assessed and recommendations made. As a result, Go-Tilt selected the Putzmeister RS 850 placing system with freestanding mounting configuration and a 40Z-meter truck-mounted boom pump with Series II detachable boom.
Freestanding Day One
Normally, truck-mounted boom pumps would pump concrete for the first three to four stories, and then a placing boom would take over in the climb to the top. This was not an option for the Paramount, as power lines were in the way for accessing the foundation below grade and traffic was a problem because no lane closures were allowed for equipment to set up at street level. The solution was to freestand the placing boom in the middle of the high-rise and place concrete in this manner from day one, until it could be transitioned to a climbing configuration.
To overcome the poor load bearing soil conditions at the job site, it was necessary to distribute the system's weight over a broader area. To solve this dilemma, foundation anchors designed by Putzmeister were the answer. A set of 20 anchor rods, with a top and bottom plate, would act as a form in the ground and allow the tower to freestand up to 64 feet (19.5m) without counterweight. The anchors, along with a compact base, which connects the foundation anchors to the tower, includes major components that can be used again in future projects. This equates to significant cost savings.
For climbing, Jack Henegar, co-owner of Thomas said, "The RS 850 offered the contractor a fully automatic hydraulic self-climbing system, which is the beauty of this system."
The RS 850 climbing equipment itself is self-contained within the profile of a double-M column. Just like the pipe, the climbing system does not extend beyond the profile of the column, making the hole size in the floor smaller and a simple square.
A single operator, who controls the lifting process using a control switch connected to the placing boom pedestal, operates the climbing action. The climbing rail can span floor spacings up to 26' 11" (8.20m). With a simple stroke of the hydraulic cylinder, the climbing rail lifts the entire column and boom assembly from floor to floor, to the top of the building.
There are no heavy floor frames or hydraulic cylinders to pack from floor to floor. The lightweight aluminum corner details and wedges are the only items, which are not carried by the system itself.
"The system is lightweight, compact and easy to assemble," says Henegar. "It is also fast, as it uses convenient pin connections instead of bolts that require a torque wrench and take more time."
When it came to selecting a boom size, Glen Grimes, owner of Go-Tilt said, "For our long term needs, we invested in a 40Z-meter. This size gives us plenty of reach and saves time because it doesn't need counterweight."
Grimes added, "It was so easy to detach the boom from the placing tower and put it back on the truck. And it was fast; it only took 30 minutes. We would drive the boom pump to another job site to pump concrete and then bring it back and setup again when we needed to place concrete at the Paramount. This kept our equipment fully utilized, which saves us money."
While the rounded structure called for complex forming techniques, placing the concrete did not pose any difficulty as the boom has a 115' 2" (35.13m) horizontal reach, which provides full coverage without the hassle and labor-intensive task of using additional delivery line. On-site, a crew of 65, plus 15 rod busters and 20 finishers on pour days, place a floor every eight days for the 19,000-square-foot (1,765m²) deck.
The concrete mix is 7,200 psi (50 MPa) for the decks, and 8,000 to 10,000 psi (55 to 69 MPa) for the shear walls and columns. The truck-mounted unit on the ground has a .16H pump cell that offers plenty of pressure (maximum 1,885 psi/130 bar on piston side) for pumping the various concrete mixes to the top of the 184-foot-tall (56m) tower.
The 40Z-meter is being used for all residential floors; meanwhile, the company also purchased a 47Z-meter truck-mounted boom pump, with a longer vertical reach of 151' 3" (46.10m), and it is placing concrete for areas outside of the residential tower, such as the parking and pool decks, where there was enough space for equipment setup.
Special Application, No Problem
The combination of concrete placing system is handling the job with efficiency, thanks in part to the Putzmeister Special Application Business (SAB) group, in conjunction with its distributors, who help specify equipment, consult on concrete composition, and design a system for maximum placing coverage. The team also supports contractors by supplying information on unit placement as well as offering technical data - working with customers from the inception of a project to its completion.
Assisting with the Paramount project, Bob Weiglein, General Manager - Telebelts® and Special Projects at Putzmeister said, "At Putzmeister, we have the resources to help customers like Go-Tilt with a complete systems approach, where we evaluate the project and then guide them to the most effective concrete placing solution with tailored products that will accomplish the job as efficiently as possible."
Grimes, who employs more than 300 people and has already handled a seven- and eight-story project, said, "Entering the vertical mid- and high-rise market was a logical way for our company to diversify and grow because we already have several employees with extensive high-rise experience from previous jobs, some of them with 30-plus years."
As the Paramount Fort Lauderdale Beach is the first condominium tower in its surrounding area that doesn't include a hotel component, it will create a true residential community that offers residents all of the family-friendly, full-service amenities of a resort, such as multiple private pools, cabanas and club privileges, a fully equipped gym, ground-floor restaurant and a children’s play area. As the area's newest high-rise since the housing crash, the building was started in December 2014 and is expected to top out in November 2016. Occupancy will follow in early 2017, with three quarters of the stylish 95 condos already sold.
Developers: Art Falcone, Nitin Motwani, and Daniel Kodsi
Architect: Revuelta Architecture International—Miami, Florida
Concrete contractor: Go-Tilt Construction LLC—Deerfield Beach, Florida
General contractor: Stiles Construction—Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Ready mix supplier: Titan America—Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Equipment distributor: Thomas Concrete Machinery, Inc.—Miami, Florida
Equipment: Putzmeister 40Z-Meter truck-mounted concrete boom pump with Series II detach boom, Putzmeister MX 36/40Z separate placing boom, Putzmeister 47Z-Meter truck-mounted concrete boom pump, and Putzmeister RS 850 placing system with foundation anchors/freestanding mounting configuration