The design team of WSP Cantor Seinuk, James G Rogers Architects, AP Construction and Chelsea Piers Connecticut (CPCT) management won the Society of Engineers of New York’s annual award for Excellence in Engineering for the Forensic Analysis/Renovation/Retrofit/Rehabilitation of Structures for the new Chelsea Piers Connecticut facility in Stamford, Conn. The award was given based on the adaptive reuse and structural design made to the former Clairol plant in Stamford, Conn.
Although the building’s square footage met the requirements for Chelsea Piers, the lack of large column free spaces created a potential roadblock for the construction and design team. Professional quality sports facilities require large column-free areas for amenities such as swimming pools, hockey rinks and tennis courts. This criterion required the removal of 23 columns from the building in order to achieve the column-free zones. Developing a method to remove the existing columns, while leaving the entire roof structure in place, was the principle challenge. The solutions selected by the team were extremely creative. The process was economical and highly sustainable, resulting in the reuse of the existing roof structure, which limited demolition and the use of new materials.
“We are thrilled with the collaborative effort that made this facility possible,” said Mike Braito, the senior vice president of Chelsea Piers Management. “Each member of the design team played a critical role. It was an exciting and challenging process to work with the architect, structural engineer and contractor to develop a feasible and economic solution that met our requirements. It was equally exciting to watch the building transformation as the structural modifications were implemented.”
The new 400,000-square-foot, sports and recreation Chelsea Piers Connecticut is set to open to the public in July 2012. The complex will boast a skating rink, aqautics center, gymnastics training center, baseball and softball training facility, field house, squash center and seven indoor tennis courts. In addition, the complex will have a childcare facility and preschool, BlueStreak sports training, rock climbing, a pro shop and Stamford Hospital, which will focus on orthopedic, sports medicine and physical therapy services.