Juno Winter Park is the place to be if you want to live a life of luxury. The seven-story, 268-unit multifamily housing project offers a variety of spacious studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom homes with gourmet kitchens, spa-inspired bathrooms, and soaring ceilings. Within the complex, residents also enjoy resort-style amenities, including a beach-entry swimming pool, a sky deck with panoramic views, resident clubs, and private fitness studios. And all of this is packaged in a beautiful, durable, and highly energy-efficient precast concrete package.
“The customer was initially skeptical that a beautiful building could be designed and built with precast concrete,” says Allen Finfrock, chief executive officer of Finfrock, the designer, precast concrete producer, and contractor for the project. The owner also wanted to lower financial risk on the project while accelerating construction to meet a tight timeline. “Getting the building design right—and within a specified time frame—was critical to their strategic plan,” Finfrock says.
The design team used building information modeling (BIM) software and Finfrock’s proprietary precast concrete products to prove that precast concrete could deliver the beautiful structure they envisioned, and so much more.
The project team started by creating a virtual plan using BIM. “By designing the project virtually in 3-D software, we answered questions and instilled confidence that the customer would get the building he wanted within the budget he required,” Finfrock says.
The team showed the owner how using a precast concrete building system would allow for rapid erection of the structure, giving subcontractors early access to safely begin their work. Precast concrete also suited the minimal staging area of the extremely tight jobsite and made it easier to integrate all of the subsystems, Finfrock says.
As an added benefit, the nearly soundproof nature of precast concrete construction not only blocks the steady stream of noise from nearby traffic and road construction but also provides a more resilient solution than other material options. “Resiliency is always a concern for developers in central Florida,” Finfrock says.
Once the client was convinced and the project was official, Finfrock’s team created every precast concrete component using 3-D modeling software, allowing designers to eliminate manufacturing and construction conflicts by integrating the structural and subsystems into one common model. “Conflicts were noted and solved in the model by project designers rather than in the field,” he says. This approach eliminated errors and change orders in the design phase and considerably reduced the on-site construction time as well as disruptions to surrounding properties.
The design team coordinated with subtrades so the electrical, plumbing, and HVAC could be manufactured in the plant within Finfrock’s proprietary DualDeck Building System. The designers used 3-D modeling software to combine design files into one space for clash detection and to locate all penetration locations required though the elements. As the structure was modeled, the information was fed into the product management software, PieceTracker, to manage and oversee pieces and erection plans.
During production, lasers were used to locate partition layouts, and the product shipped to the site with lines for field-installed partitions already indicated on the product. This sped up construction and reduced on-site labor, Finfrock says. Biweekly meetings with all subtrades kept everyone’s plans aligned.
“The use of BIM was invaluable and made the difference in bringing the project to fruition,” Finfrock concludes. “It allowed the complex to open just 11 months after breaking ground.”