Doka’s Modular Formwork Completes Texas VA Hospital

Thu April 17, 2008 - West Edition
CEG



In South Texas, the Audie L. Murphy Memorial Veterans Hospital is comprised of 462 authorized hospital beds, offering services that range from surgical care to psychiatric and geriatric care.

In an effort to expand the facility and therefore extend capabilities, the hospital received funding from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for general renovations to the hospital in July 2007.

Recently, additional funding was provided to the hospital to renovate its existing surgical intensive care unit. Transitional housing at the new Poly trauma Rehabilitation Center will be added as well, supporting veterans who have suffered multiple traumatic injuries with the goal of returning them to independent living.

With the major part of the formwork scheduled to wrap up in April 2008, contractor McGoldrick Construction strives to meet the hospital’s goal of a timely completion. The $10.5 million renovation project began in November 2007, and will add 50,000 sq. ft. (4,645 sq m) to the hospital’s existing footprint. The additional square footage is going to be primarily used for administration so that the hospital can better serve veterans.

Facing unique beam conditions that required a cantilever beyond the perimeter, McGoldrick Construction enlisted Doka USA to provide a solution to meet the construction challenge. The design was met by placing offset 10 kip towers with tiebacks to achieve the cantilevered design of the perimeter.

The contractor selected approximately 4,600 sq. ft. (427 sq m) of Doka’s Frami formwork to form the core walls and beam sides. The base walls were 7 ft., 6 in. (2.3 m) high and 12 in. (30.5 cm) wide.

The system’s modular design allows for unlimited possible combinations in both width and height. Panels can be used either upright or horizontal, and the 6-in. (15 cm) increment together with the steel fillers offer optimum adaptability of the formwork to the dimensions of the structure.

After pouring the core additions, the job will be completed by wrapping the steel beams and columns with concrete. The shoring supporting the beams has a 10 kip load, providing stability until the concrete has hardened. The Frami panel frames are made of torsion resistant hollow-section steel profiles, and the solid construction and asymmetrical position of the ties allows full liquid head pours up to 9 ft. (2.7 m) with only two ties.

With time being of the essence on this project, McGoldrick Construction was able to avoid additional time involved in using cranes to lift the formwork on the job site as Doka’s Frami panels are lightweight and can be erected quickly and easily by hand.

The system provided the contractor with a quick, cost-effective means to construct the perimeter of the building with easy assembly that doesn’t require the aid of lifting equipment. Quick panel connection is possible with only three lightweight Frami clamps per 9-ft. vertical joint, saving time in assembly by joining and aligning the panels with just one blow from a hammer. Moreover, because Frami can be handset with 80 percent fewer parts and 40 percent fewer ties than conventional handset systems, it also saved McGoldrick Construction on equipment and labor costs.

To ensure safety onsite, Doka provided handrail clamps that act as a universal barrier for all platforms, slab edges and deck openings. The company also provides three safety tie-off handles per 9 ft. of panel, meeting OSHA requirements and enhancing construction crew security while working.

The contractor has been pleased with the design of the formwork and ease of assembly. Mike Kellmann, project manager, from McGoldrick Construction said, “We were also pleased with the level of service we received from Doka. They completely understood our needs for the project and came through with a design that worked.”

Another benefit of the Frami formwork is less maintenance down the road, and a product that will remain tough and durable for years to come. This is due to the frame being hot-dipped galvanized, eliminating rust removal and painting all together. The formwork also provides a better finish with an all-birch plywood face and protected tie hole. This contributes to reduced maintenance costs as the edges also are sealed with hot caulking, promoting longer plywood life span.

About Doka

With nearly 50 years experience in formwork engineering, Doka serves customers in more than 35 countries and has participated in construction of some of the world’s best-known structures including the world’s tallest skyscraper (Burj Dubai), the Hoover Dam Bypass Bridge, along with many other projects of all sizes.

For more information, call 877/Doka-USA or visit www.dokausa.com.