Just how important has modular construction been to the Department of Defense’s plan toexpand their military bases? Well, if you examine the work that just one modular company has done at just one military base, you may be astounded. When Ramtech Building Systems was first asked to participate in the Army’s Modularity Realignment Program, Gary White, Vice President of Sales, knew that this would be a great opportunity to display Ramtech’s traditional modular building system. At the time he did not know that over $6 billion was budgeted to be spent at Fort Bliss alone.
In 2005, Ramtech was awarded a project at Fort Bliss to provide 102 able bodied barracks, 24 medical hold barracks, 12 battalion headquarter buildings, and 2 brigade headquarters buildings, totaling 233,516 square feet. These buildings were all modular buildings manufactured by Ramtech and designed to meet ATFP, last 40+ years, but be easily relocated.
From 2006-2009, Ramtech worked with Hensel Phelps Construction Company, who was awarded a $200 million Company Operations Facility design-build project at Fort Bliss. Ramtech provided HPCC with design assist, fabricated the permanent modular sections in its Mansfield, Texas plant, and erected 18 two story and 6 single story buildings totaling more than 286,000 square feet. To complete the work, Ramtech used its proprietary Accelerated Building System (ABS) which utilized a six inch reinforced concrete slab floor system and traditional Type 3 framing. All structural framing, rough electrical, plumbing, and HVAC were completed in Ramtech’s manufacturing plant, while the concrete foundation, interior and exterior finishes, fire protection, and communication were completed onsite.
In 2007, Ramtech was awarded an Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract that allowed the Corps of Engineers to award up to $125 million in design-build contracts to Ramtech over a three year period. Between 2007 and 2010, Ramtech designed and constructed three significant buildings at Fort Bliss.
The first project was a two story 99,050 square foot Combined Brigade/Battalion Headquarters building which met LEED Silver Certification. Building highlights include all brick exterior, more than 40 miles of comm./data wiring, a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF), emergency back-up power, and redundant air conditioning.
Prior to completing the Headquarters Building, the USACE awarded Ramtech a second task order for a Military Battalion Headquarters building. This two story project combined brick and EIFS exterior and a high pitched standing seam room, which matched the architecture of the surrounding buildings. It also met LEED Silver Certification, featured three training/conference rooms, two communication rooms, and a SIPRNET room.
The third task order, while the smallest of the three, was the most challenging as it provided for the design and construction of a 14,728 square foot Directorate of Information Management building and the renovation of an adjacent facility. The building replaced the original base data center and included five offices, a server room, network operations center, and electrical and mechanical rooms. This mission-critical facility supports Bliss’ total IT infrastructure as well as SIPRNET requirements. The server room has raised flooring and can accommodate 79 liquid cooled Dell servers.
Ramtech’s construction at Fort Bliss over a five year period amounted to over 650,000 square feet of temporary and permanent modular buildings. All the buildings utilized Ramtech’s traditional modular or Accelerated Building System, and all met UFC and ATFP codes and were designed and constructed to last 40+ years.
Jeff Ward works in Business Development for Ramtech Building Systems, Inc. He has worked in the modular industry for 13 years serving primarily the Federal Government and the Commercial Markets.