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learn something more than bricks and on staff, and if it makes sense to them, The solution, he says, was to line the
mortars, so as soon as he graduated from the workers put the plan into motion. If copper grid with clay mix material throu-
high school and served his duty in the not, the owner and architects come up ghout the existing grid, which finally low-
Israeli Army as an officer, he traveled to with a plan that will work best. ered the ohm level to below the required
the United State to attend college. “If we don’t come up with details on 5 ohm.
Frig holds a Bachelor of Science in how to handle the situation, we’ll go by “It would have been a pain to change
accounting from the University of theirs,” Frig adds. “Obviously, it is an open the location [of the room] after running
Southern California. discussion, so we will come up with rea- all the conduit and bus ducts to it,” Frig
sons and explanations, and hopefully explains. “The bus ducts cost $500 per
Old Building, Old Problems we’ll end up with the right answer.” foot, so we faced either burying costs
As with many older structures, the Broad- The construction crew came across a or finding a new solution, and we found
way Exchange Building has had its share major challenge when it came time to a solution.”
of surprise stumbling blocks. Because the build a room for the Department of Water
building was built in 1915, there were no and Power. Ready for Anything
blueprints available. This is a special vault built to the The key lesson Frig has learned from
“When you are dealing with an exist- building’s water and electrical specifica- building Loft 7 – which is set for comple-
ing structure where no blueprints are av- tions that have to be grounded because tion at the end of the year after three
ailable, it is like opening a can and not the transformers used to electrify the years of construction – is to be ready for
knowing what is inside,” Frig relates. “You building emit radiation. any challenge an old building may offer.
will have all these issues and complexi- According to Frig, the radiation emis- “Nothing that is written in the blue-
ties in specific locations where you need sions cannot exceed 5 ohms. To subdue prints is exactly like in the Bible,” he says.
to work around. Sometimes a wall does- the emissions, a special grid is required “What you see in the blueprints is always
n’t fit here, or there is a beam that you on the floor in the vault. nice and clean, but in reality things are a
didn’t know existed. We have a lot of iss- As the laborers were clearing space to bit more complicated.
ues here and there in that regard.” place the grid, they discovered beams “The scheduling of the work requires
To overcome these issues, Frig says he going into the floor, which had to be up-to-the-minute detail. But construction
and his crew came up with “creative solu- removed because they caused the ohm equals delays, and it takes a bite of your
tions.” These are shown to the architects emission to exceed 20. energy when you have those delays.” ■

OCTOBER 2007 ■ CONSTRUCTION TODAY ■ 293

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