Pumping Helps Achieve Software Firm’s Epic Growth
Epic Systems Corp, in Verona, Wisconsin is an innovative medical software company whose success is an economic engine for the nearby Madison area. The company’s sprawling 950-acre site is developing a fourth campus to accommodate the growing staff of 6800 employees. An underground parking structure under construction will help accommodate current workers and future hires. General contractor JP Cullen, Janesville, WI, is speeding concrete placement utilizing separate placing booms, boom pumps and a stationary pump.
Mark Brusberg, project manager and eight-year veteran at the Epic site explains, “We built a very similar structure here six years ago and we wanted to capitalize on that experience. Tom Oury, our Schwing rep, helped us work out the layout and equipment for the project.” The older parking structure was a square configuration while the current footprint is a massive 382-foot x 530-foot rectangle that will be 58 feet 6 inches tall resting in a 60 foot six inch excavation. The poured concrete roof will be covered with fill to match grade. The company is utilizing a Schwing SPB 35 separate placing boom that is free-standing on octagonal mast sections to place the 15,000 cubic yards required for the project. Seven different mounting locations are laid out in the structure.
“We designed gravity based footings that are 15-feet six-inches square and five feet thick for the mast mounting,” according to Brusberg. The Schwing mounting system for free standing is a cross-frame that mounts to anchor bolts embedded in the concrete. Up to three six-meter sections are used to make up the mast. “We like the flexibility to bolt and unbolt mast sections as the project dictates, “ Brusberg notes. The SPB 35 can free stand to 50 feet without a counterweight. The project currently has work underway on three different deck levels.
A universal head section mounts to the last mast section. A four-pin quick-connect system attaches to boom to the head section. Schwing units allow the power pack to be separated from the boom reducing the weight to stay within the capabilities of the tower cranes even when extended. Weight of the SPB 35 is 12,850-lbs without the power pack and 18,750-lbs combined.
Feeding the placing boom through five-inch system that will stretch to 600-feet is an BPA 5000 trailer pump that is moved to any of three locations depending on truck mixer access. The pump has output to 152 cubic yards per hour and the ability to apply 2,364 psi on the concrete. By quickly switching hydraulic hoses from the differential cylinder’s rod side to piston side, the machine can be tailored for high volume and high pressure pumping. Potratz Concrete Pumping South, Franksville, Wisconsin, just south of Milwaukee, is supplying the SP 8800.
With bolt-together mast sections that are six meters in length, the crew can configure the ideal mast height, assemble it in a cross frame and be ready to mount the boom. “We have three cross frames and six mast sections so we are assembling mast sections as needed and flying the boom to any of the seven locations,” says Brusberg, “With the pin connection system we can dismount the boom, fly it to a new location and remount it in twenty-minutes with two men.”
Six of the mast locations are equally spaced along the longest side of the footprint. The seventh location was chosen because of close proximity to an existing building where there was no access for a boom pump. The pours are designed for a boom pump to supplement the 114-foot horizontal reach of the separate placing boom. Potratz usually supplies their Schwing S 61 SX truck-mounted concrete pump with placing boom that reaches 184 feet 2 inches horizontally. Ten pours make up each slab with each pour consuming approximately 500 cubic yards. Each mast location can serve two pour areas.
The coordinated placing system is simplified by the design of the octagonal mast sections. Accessories like ladders, pipeline holders and work platforms can be easily added thanks to brackets welded on each mast section. “We find this system to be faster and easier to work with than lattice towers that do not offer as much flexibility,” according to Brusberg.
The mix design used for the post tensioned slabs are reaching 3,000 psi strength after three days. The mix is supplied by Lycon Inc., dispatching out of 20 locations throughout southeastern Wisconsin. “We have been placing it in the pump at five inch slump but we are working to redesign it to an eight inch slump as we pump farther out and some water is absorbed into the mix ,” Brusberg notes.
Epic has chosen themes for each of their campuses with the recently completed Farm Campus featuring a white farmhouse with a wrap-around porch that leads into a creamery that connects to a red barn, complete with beige silo and a John Deere tractor parked in back. The Fourth Campus’ building exteriors – some with steeples and castle-like parapets – are meant to resemble classroom buildings at older university campuses in the U.S. and university cities in England such as Cambridge and Oxford. Each building will hold 300 to 350 offices, for a total of 1,580 offices. Three of the five buildings will sit on top of the 1,500-space underground parking ramp. The company traditionally houses one employee per office, a choice that is designed to support the focused-work practices and needs of software developers. Epic has shown conceptual plans for a proposed campus 5, with up to five more office buildings.
Owners: Epic Systems Corp., Verona, Wisconsin
General Contractor: JP Cullen, Janesville, Wisconsin
Concrete Pumping Contractor: Potratz Concrete Pumping South, Franksville, Wisconsin
Pumping Equipment: Schwing SPB 35 separate placing boom, BPA 5000 stationary concrete pump, S 61 SX truck-mounted concrete pump with placing boom.