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Cyma Builders Completes Major Fit Out of New Office and Testing Building

Cyma Builders and Construction Managers is pleased to announce the successful completion of a major fit out project located at a new office and testing building in the Philadelphia Navy Yard. The project was started on July 22nd, 2020 during the height of the COVID pandemic and was approached in two phases. 

The first phase included the fit out of 43,000 SF of office space requiring completion by November to accommodate enhanced social distancing needs for their employees. The work included general office space, private offices, a town hall / break room area, four bathrooms, and general support spaces. At the onset of the project, a risk analysis was performed identifying critical infrastructure concerns that would prevent on-time delivery of the space. Cyma determined the new heating hot water and electrical infrastructure designed to support both phases would not be complete in time for the opening of the new office space. The team mitigated the risk by temporarily providing power to the 2nd floor from the existing service to allow the client to achieve their scheduled move in date. The first phase was completed in approximately 16 weeks with approval of occupancy on November 20th, 2020.

The second phase began approximately one month after the first phase and included 27,000 SF of new lab space to increase the client’s capacity to perform clinical testing and development.  Phase two posed complexities from a technical and logistical perspective as it involved the purchase and integration of new infrastructure, including two air handling units, two chillers, two hydronic boilers, a low-pressure steam boiler, and a new 480V electrical service.  The new equipment required tie-in to existing systems that were supporting active lab functions in the building. Cyma reviewed the drawings and existing systems and developed a comprehensive list of over one hundred tie-ins. The list was utilized to identify critical shutdowns impacting the client’s existing operations and allowed coordination to maintain the overall project schedule while accommodating the client’s business needs. Cyma was also able to ensure there was no unplanned outages to the client’s lab functions while this project was performed, and thus no impact to the client’s business. 

This project was initiated in Early April of 2021 during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. Cyma identified early on the pandemic would impact the project from a cost and schedule perspective and was able to advise the client on how it would threaten their required end-date. Using this knowledge, the client was able to prioritize areas critical to their business which the Cyma team worked to accommodate. As a result, many of the costs and schedule risks associated with the pandemic were built into the project execution plan, and any impact was successfully mitigated. Cyma was also able to effectively manage the subcontractors onsite and ensure that all PPE and social distancing requirements were always maintained, including through peak manpower of 97 active personnel. Subsequently, the project did not have any documented cases of community spread throughout the eight-month time frame of the project.  

The second phase of the project was completed on schedule and the client took occupancy of both phases on March 10th, 2021. 

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