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Ordner Overhauls Landmark Building in Mount Pleasant

Wed March 22, 2000 - Southeast Edition
Barbie Perkins-Cooper

Once a familiar landmark to the Mount Pleasant, SC, community, vacant for more than two years, the old Lowe’s building is getting a new look. Ordner Construction Company, Inc. of Lawrenceville, GA, is the general contractor for the development project and is responsible for the renovation of the building. New tenants will include Carolina Pottery of Smithfield, NC, and Office Depot, T. J. Maxx will add an additional 6,000 square feet in an open area adjacent to its current retail establishment.

Carolina Pottery will occupy approximately 54,000 square feet of space at the former Lowe’s building. Office Depot will dwell in approximately 30,000 square feet. Small shops will be added to an area next to Cats Music Construction next to Cats will be a new addition and will add an extra 8,000 square feet of new storefront. These retail establishments will be a welcomed addition to the Mount Pleasant community and the Wando Crossing Shopping Center. The total square footage of the renovation and new construction project will be 98,000 square feet.

Developed by Developers Diversified Realty Corporation of Beachwood, OH, construction began on January 3, 2000. Jim Blair and Ken Zundel are the project managers for Developers Diversified Realty Corporation.

The anticipated completion date of the site is May 2000. Currently, renovation and new construction is on schedule, to meet the projected deadlines. Retail Division Manager/Project Manager is R. Blake Jones. Ken Duren and Chuck Schmidt are the superintendents assigned to the construction project at Wando Crossing Shopping Center.

Modifications include the demolition of a portion of the old Lowe’s building, to meet the needs of Office Depot and Carolina Pottery. The reconstruction will update the center, adding additional tenants, providing, a better shopping area for the targeted shoppers of the Mount Pleasant community. The renovation is designed as a more upscale complex, focusing on the needs of consumers, targeting the competition in the area. Mount Pleasant is an upscale community that is escalating in popularity.

To keep the project on schedule. weekly meetings are held by the general contractor to ensure that subcontractors understand and can accommodate the scheduling of all work, along with the communication and equipment needed to complete the project. Approximately 75 percent to 80 percent of the subcontractors hired for the addition are from the low country area of Charleston.

On an average, a maximum of 100 workers are involved in different aspects of the construction renovation, performing a variety of tasks. Among the jobs are site work, as well as building structure and interior construction.

The work site is 100 percent fenced in now, to protect the shopping public from accessing the construction site. Construction signs are posted, detouring construction traffic to the appropriate access roads, thus cutting down on traffic congestion and the inconvenience of customers.

Construction will include low bend masonry walls, structural steel, installation of the EPDM roof system and the front of the building will include E.I.F.S. (exterior insulation finish system) and brick veneer, to match the existing building. A standing seam metal roof to match the existing complex will accent the front of the renovation and new construction. Interior construction will be completed according to the tenants requirements. Cost of the project for the renovation of the old Lowe’s building is projected to be $3.5 million.

Construction equipment to be used at the site will include bulldozers, as well as cranes to get the structural steel in place. A trackhoe was used to remove an existing structure of the old building. Additional trackhoes, backhoes and trucks will be on site, to use for installation of new site utilities, and digging the footings for the new buildings. Motor graders on site will be used for grading of new building paths, and grading of asphalt paving.

The vendors easily locate major equipment in the low county area. O. L. Thompson, site contractor provides equipment for his needs. Subcontractors rent materials and heavy-duty construction equipment from Sunbelt Rentals, United Rentals, Hertz Equipment Rentals, and other local companies that supply construction equipment to the Charleston area.

Parking in the area will be reconstructed a bit, the existing road in front of the old Lowe’s building will be moved back about 30 feet. The renovated area will receive new landscaping, and irrigation. Site utilities will include relocating the existing storm drainage and the existing sanity sewer system and waterlines

Among the most challenging concerns at the site is the relocation of the existing storm system. Because of the high water table in the area, sheet piling will be required for installation of the sanitary sewer system. Rerouting the system around the building is one suggestion under consideration.

The population of Mount Pleasant is excited about Carolina Pottery, Office Depot and the addition of T. J. Max in the Wando Crossing Shopping Center complex. As Mount Pleasant continues to grow as a lovely place to live and work, more upscale shops are moving to the area, making shopping in Mount Pleasant convenient and fun. When the tourist season begins in Charleston, SC, residents of Mount Pleasant will no longer have to cross the bridge to find the goods and services they desire.

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