Reminder: GMHC's move has been postponed to Spring 2011
Above is a photo of the kitchen on the 7th floor in our new office space. The walk-in refrigerator and some of the other kitchen equipment have arrived. The dining room is actually starting to look like a dining room. This is very exciting! Please visit our website (gmhc.org/were moving) and you can check out our video, hosted by Marjorie Hill, PhD, our CEO, and me. We provide a virtual tour of the construction on the 7th floor and the lobby. Soon there will be a second video about the 6th floor.
As always, we welcome your feedback and please be sure to let us know of any questions or concerns you might have about the move. As I look back on this year and our work with the Project Dream Team, I am amazed at each member's generosity, pride and commitment to this project.
As the holidays arrive, all of us at GMHC can celebrate the changes that are developing in our new office space steered by the Dream Team. There will be great opportunities in the new year as we expand our services and programs for those affected by HIV/AIDS.
Chief Operating Officer
In this update, we would like to introduce Richard Farewell, our Project Manager and Superintendent, Lehr Construction Corporation. His office is temporarily stationed on the 7th floor at 450 West 33rd while construction continues.
"The new office space and all that it offers will change a lot of lives." Richard Farewell
I have worked in construction for 29 years, 13 of those years with Lehr Construction Corporation. For this project, I have two roles — Project Manager and Superintendent — which means managing every detail of the project and the 30 to 40 contractors who are doing various tasks. The project begins with one-dimensional drawings. I then review the drawings to understand the intent and detail of each part of the entire project. A schedule for construction reflects the understanding of the information on the drawings.
Every item on the project is reviewed and approved by the project team. Communication of information is important because we have to make everything fit together. And part of what I do is to understand how any change — small or big — may or may not impact the project.
The beauty of what I do is that there is always something to learn each day. For this job, we have had to really think "out of the box" on all of the challenges. Our construction team is now building a kitchen where people used to have offices. Where there were desks will now be a stove! When the news arrived about the delay in GMHC's move to early 2011, the challenge became how to continue building the kitchen on the 7th floor with the piping on the 6th floor where the current tenant (WNET) is located. So a plan was hatched asking WNET to temporarily move out of an area on the 6th floor for one week to install all of the piping. We didn't lose any time in our construction schedule and were able to get the job done in only one week rather than three to four weeks.
In looking back to the start of this project, we have been able to accomplish a lot more than originally anticipated. I continue to enjoy working with GMHC's senior managers and directors. Their flexibility and understanding have made the challenges easier to endure. Plus we are helping GMHC staff make smart decisions so that moving forward in the construction process becomes a win-win decision.
The Lehr team really dug deep to avoid additional costs along the way because we appreciate the work of GMHC. Where a wall has to go doesn't change a life. What GMHC does changes lives. The new office space and all that it offers will change a lot of lives. It is bigger and brighter. I am sure the clients, volunteers and staff will like their new home. It is a new place to embrace.
Construction continues on our new entrance, which now has a plywood front, and inside the new lobby. The actually entry way is being manufactured offsite. It will be brought in on a truck and installed.
The 7th floor construction continues to progress well as the kitchen equipment arrives. The construction in the dining room has started to shift on the lighting and walls.
We continue to be in negotiation with a focus now on one building. The landlord is reviewing the lease and we have resolved some of the contractual issues. So we are really close in solidifying our plans to move forward with this building.
If you have any questions about our updates, please call Krishna Stone in the Communications Department at (212) 367-1016 or send an e-mail to email@example.com. Thank you.
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GMHC is a not-for-profit, volunteer-supported and community-based organization committed to national leadership in the fight against AIDS. We provide prevention and care services to men, women and families that are living with, or affected by, HIV/AIDS in New York City. We advocate for scientific, evidence-based public health solutions for hundreds of thousands worldwide.