As the commercial modular building industry continues to grow and evolve, so too have the number of privately held companies who have seen their founders turn the reins over to the next generation of leaders. In many of these companies, it’s now the sons and daughters who are stepping up to take over. This is the case with several firms including Ramtech where Matt Slataper became President on January 1st of this year. Although Mike Slataper remains the CEO of Ramtech, Matt took over the day to day operations from Linc Moss who will take retirement at the end of the year.
Freelance writer Zena Ryder, who specializes in writing on construction topics, has profiled several family-run modular building companies for the Modular Building Institute’s Modular Advantage Magazine. In the article linked here, Ms. Ryder interviews several parents and their adult children who are now running the family business. She explores the paths they took to get there, the interesting dynamics that go along with working together, and the legacy and goals they hope to achieve.
Last week the production team from BrandStar Entertainment came out to record video interviews and document our manufacturing plant process for a segment that is being produced for their Inside the BluePrint syndicated series. Conference room interviews were conducted remotely with Ramtech President Matt Slataper and Vice President of Engineering Roland Brown. Both Matt and Roland shared their thoughts on Ramtech’s history and technical capabilities, on how we go about developing relocatable and permanent modular building projects, and our evolution into one of the premier design-build modular construction companies in North America. In our manufacturing plant they were able to visually capture all the construction activities that make up the individual modular sections, including wall framing, roof setting, electrical and plumbing installation, how the floors are moved through the line, and other details that showcase the modular building process.
Inside The BluePrint is a fast-paced series that focuses on innovations in the commercial construction and design industries. The program identifies new products and ideas and shows how they will affect how we will live, work, and play in the future. The ITB episodes began in 2015 and are now into their 6th season. For each season, ITB develops a 12-part series that’s based around a theme which examines the four steps that make up a leading-edge product or service. These four steps include evaluating the inspiration, ideas, processes, and their impact. The current season is focused on “Leading Edge Innovations that are Advancing Modular Building Systems”. For the Ramtech segment, this will include chronicling our traditional approach to the design, manufacturing, and construction of relocatable and permanent modular buildings, as well as a detailed look at our industry-leading slab on grade permanent modular construction process.
Ramtech’s 3-4 minute video segment is currently scheduled to run twice locally on November 14-15 on a yet to be determined Dallas/Fort Worth affiliate network. BrandStar Entertainment will conduct a public relations campaign for the segment, along with various social media initiatives as part of a comprehensive preshow marketing plan. Ramtech will receive licensing rights to the segment as well access to the raw video footage to use in our own future marketing efforts.
Last Month, Ramtech’s Vice President of Engineering Roland Brown, was notified that he was reappointed as the Presiding Officer of the Texas Industrialized Building Code Council. Since the council was formed in 1984, Roland has been the only representative from the commercial modular building industry to hold the presiding officer position. He was reelected unanimously by the other ten members on the council, which functions as an advisory board for the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation on issues related to the regulation of the industrialized housing and commercial building industries.
Originally appointed to the Council by former Texas Governor Rick Perry in October 2010, Roland was reappointed by Governor Greg Abbott in 2019 to serve another two-year term which will expire on February 1, 2021. Roland is the longest serving member in the history of the Texas IBCC.
In addition to his service on the IBCC, he is currently on the board of directors as Past President for the Modular Building Institute, the international nonprofit trade association that represents the commercial modular construction industry. Roland is also a member of the International Code Council where he has been an advocate for addressing code and compliance issues that affect the modular building industry. Roland began his career in the modular building industry in 1981, and since that time he has developed a long track record of creating unique structural designs which have made significant contributions to the technical evolution of the commercial modular industry.
Ramtech has begun the installation of the 26 non-combustible steel-framed modular sections that will make up the two-story multi-use office building we’re constructing for Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in Los Alamos, NM. The module setting process began for the 22,680 square foot permanent modular building after we were required to spend several weeks performing an extensive sub-surface investigation. This was done to locate both the known and unknown utilities and the remnants of a previous structure prior to developing the foundation for the building.
The project is being built using our innovative slab-on-grade permanent modular construction process. Using this method, factory-built modular sections are constructed as three-dimensional structural components with attached walls but no floor. The modular sections are then transported to the construction site and installed by crane directly onto a conventional concrete slab foundation. This allows the concrete slab to become the floor of the building just like a typical site-built structure.
Designated as a Multi-Use Office Building (MUOB) project, the new facility is being installed adjacent to LANL’s main headquarters located in Technical Area 3. The permanent modular office building will include an atrium, elevator, and two stairwells. The floor plan calls for 67 personal business offices in three sizes, along with an open office plan on both floors that can accommodate 12 freestanding office spaces using custom furniture cubicles.
Although the building is not LEED certified, the facility does require that the design and construction incorporate materials that are specified to process and utilize sustainable methods. The turnkey project also required us to perform all the necessary site work including the extension and connection of utilities. The exterior finishes call for a permanent look using durable Hi-Rib horizontal metal panels at grade and an Exterior Insulation and Finish System (EIFS) with stucco textures that will accent the buildings geometry. The roofing system will incorporate a multi-layer SBS Modified Bitumen DOE “cool” installation. The interior materials and finishes have all been chosen based on aesthetics, sustainability, durability, and ease of maintenance in order to provide a facility that promotes an exceptional work environment for the building’s occupants. Ramtech expects to have the project completed prior to March of 2021.
The value engineering of a modular building – including the layout itself – provides for a systematic way of looking at a project in order to substitute materials and methods with lower cost alternatives that don’t sacrifice the function or quality of the facility. Since our inception, Ramtech has continually practiced the concept of value engineering in order to meet both our customers expectations while also meeting their budgets. With a resume of over 4,500 successfully completed projects, we have the experience and know-how to build exceptional value into every relocatable modular building and permanent modular construction project we do. To achieve it, it’s critical that the value engineering process takes place early in the design phase through proper programming with the client. Click the image below to an article in Construction Dive and explore how value engineering works in practice, and the role it can play in making modular construction a better choice for commercial building projects.