Stone Oak Methodist Hospital

The Stone Oak Methodist Hospital was coined the ‘hospital of the future’ during initial construction in 2009. Designed to evolve with the community’s needs, the hospital is undergoing its third phase of planned expansions.

From the start of the project, Brandt offered design improvements and suggested ways to save money without sacrificing quality or technology. Prefabrication is one way we offer a cost savings to our clients.

Prefabrication is not a new concept. However, thanks to increased Building Information Model (BIM) proficiency and the growth of green construction, this practice has become a critical trend in our industry. Prefabrication is responsible for improved project schedules, reduced costs and budgets, increased site safety, and limited site waste.

“We like to prefabricate what we can, because there is less exposure to the elements in the shop compared to the job site,” Bill Forehand, General Superintendent, said. “These factors enable us to stay on schedule and save money.”

In the shop’s controlled environment, our San Antonio team prefabricated approximately 7,000 hangers for the hospital’s plumbing and mechanical systems. Our team’s improved productivity and efficiency resulted in a huge savings.

“I think it was a good move,” Bill said. “They got it all done for one-third of the budget. The team did a great job.”

 

To learn more about all of the services we have to offer, contact us today!

New Texas Building Code

As buildings are expected to perform at higher levels of efficiency, our building codes are changing. It is no longer good enough to simply buy “energy efficient” equipment, install it, and assume that it will provide the intended results. The process of commissioning assures buildings actually operate as they are designed.

Commissioning Background

Brandt has always operated with this in mind, but in 2000 our leadership recognized the value that comes from following a standard process. Jim Bell was brought on board to develop the commissioning team based on NEBB’s Building Systems Commissioning Procedures. Some benefits of commissioning mechanical projects are:

Early identification and resolution of project issues

Projects completed on time

Projects functioning as intended

Reduction in cost during warranty period

It separates us from the pack – as an elite contractor that only does the best

Doing it right the first time means happy customers and repeat business

Around the same time Brandt adopted standards to provide better buildings, the International Code Council created The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). This was created as a model code for the establishment of minimum design and construction requirements for energy efficiency. While there have been several editions, the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) was recently adopted by the State of Texas and placed into effect as of November 1, 2016.

The Main Impact

Commissioning is required for all buildings where the total mechanical equipment cooling capacity is greater than or equal to 480,000 Btu/Hr (40 tons), or the combined service water and space heating capacity is greater than 600,000 Btu/Hr.  It also requires us to test the functionality of all lighting control systems.

What Does This Mean for Brandt?

As with all new code requirements, a learning curve and a transition period are associated with the implementation of how they work within a project. The good news is our in-house process already encompasses a majority of the mechanical portion of the new code, and we are in a great position to handle the new requirements.

Brandt’s commissioning team will help ensure each project meets the new requirements. This includes leading the commissioning process on MEP design build projects and providing support to the general contractor and third-party commissioning agents.

 

To learn more about how we can help on your next project, contact us today!

Employees’ Child Participates in Local Event

Brandt offers many Special Olympics of Texas volunteer opportunities throughout the year. Our employees often refer to the experience as rewarding and inspiring.

Our Training Manager, Dawn Rogers, often volunteers with Brandt at the Special Olympics competition, but she recently experienced the competitions in a different way.

Her seventeen-year-old son, Joe, has special needs. He is a sophomore at Marcus High School in Flower Mound, Texas, and recently joined the Spirit of Flower Mound Area 10 Special Olympics team.

“When Joe was born, he was what is referred to in our special community as neuro-typical, which means he met all of the developmental milestones and didn’t exhibit any disabilities at birth,” Dawn said.

When Joe was 10 months old, he contracted a form of bacterial meningitis. Dawn explained the infection caused brain impairment, hearing loss, and an alphabet soup of diagnoses. As Joe grew up, he watched his sisters participate in sports, and he began asking Dawn why he could not play too.

“It broke my heart,” Dawn said. “I wasn’t familiar with all of the amazing services available to kids like Joe, until we moved from East Texas to the Dallas area in 2011.”

Sporting opportunities expanded for Joe when he moved to the Dallas area. He played basketball with the Miracle League for a few years until they found the Special Olympics in 2016.

“Finding his team and watching him participate in the Area 10 games was an absolute blast,” Dawn said. “During the Area 10 basketball games, a large group of volunteers showed up and cheered on all of the teams.”

Dawn said experiencing the Special Olympics from the family perspective and watching the huge impact volunteers made was more rewarding than she could have imagined.

“I want the volunteers to know how much my heart was filled seeing them cheer on our team. Being able to see my son’s face light up when a crowd of people was cheering him on, absolutely priceless.”

Employee Appreciation Day 2017

Dear Brandt Employees,

I appreciate what each of you contributes to Brandt and how your contributions positively impact the lives of so many people in our community. Life would be very different without air-conditioning, electrical systems and plumbing. The hospitals, data centers, research labs, and other facilities people count on every day would not exist. The work you do building and maintaining the MEP systems in these facilities makes life better for our community.

While MEP systems have advanced and changed over the years, the skill, coordination, and plain hard work that’s required by our field leaders, crews, and our office employees to successfully install and service them has not. You regularly overcome bad weather, schedule changes, job site congestion, and other obstacles in order to complete your work.  You are a diverse group of men and women with varied experience, education, and skills. I appreciate the enormous strength that’s generated from everyone coming together and sharing their talents to make the things we do possible.

Brandt is a terrific place to work because you make it that way.

Thank you,

Barry Moore
President/CEO­­­­

The Dallas 24 Hour Club

Brandt is honored to be a part of Dallas 24 Hour Club’s next phase of growth. Invited to assist with the project by KDC Real Estate Development & Investments and HKS Architects, we are one of more than a dozen companies working on the facility pro bono.

Founded in 1969, The Dallas 24 Hour Club is a registered non-profit organization that provides sober transitional living for homeless individuals who want a way of life away from alcohol and substance abuse.

The two-story, 14,000-square-foot building will replace the old facility on Ross Avenue in Dallas, Texas. The new building increases the nonprofit’s annual accommodation from 300 to 400 people. New amenities will include a commercial kitchen and dining area, large AA meeting room, a resident community room, meditation rooms, indoor and outdoor activity space, and parking – all of which help promote sobriety and a sense of community.

Brandt will install the building’s plumbing systems for the restrooms, showers, and commercial kitchen.  Ferguson, Uponor, Hugh M. Cunningham, Inc., and Sunstate Equipment Company generously donated supplies for the project.

Uponor provided domestic water pipes for the entire project. Ease of installation, zero maintenance, and superior longevity made Uponor’s product ideal for this project. Brandt wanted Dallas 24 Hour Club to have peace of mind knowing their piping system will never corrode and will be able to serve them the entirety of the building’s service life.

Ferguson donated plumbing fixtures for the bathrooms, showers and commercial kitchen; Hugh M. Cunningham, Inc. donated the drains and backflow preventers; and Sunstate will provide the excavation rental equipment at no cost.

The new Dallas 24 Hour Club is scheduled for completion Fall of 2017.

Upcoming Recruiting Events

Brandt is looking for the best and brightest to join our team! We offer opportunity for advancement at every level, and our multi-discipline approach means there’s a place for anyone with the drive to learn and the determination to succeed. Find out when we will be at a career fair near you:

Texas A&M University Engineering Fair
College Station, TX
1/24/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Engineers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

Texas A&M University Construction Fair
College Station, TX
2/2/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

Baylor University STEM Career Fair
Waco, TX
2/8/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Engineers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

 

Texas State University Construction Fair
San Marcos, TX
2/9/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Summer 2016 Interns & Full Time Positions

University of Oklahoma CNS Construction Science
Norman, OK
2/9/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

 

Texas Tech University Construction, Mechanical & Electrical Engineering Fair
Lubbock, TX
2/15/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Engineers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

Colorado State University Engineering Fair
Fort Collins, CO
2/21/2017
Recruiting:
Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Electrical Estimators
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

University of North Texas Engineering & Computer Science Fair
Denton, TX
2/23/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Engineers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

Southern Methodist University Engineering Fair
Dallas, TX
2/28/2017
Recruiting:
Mechanical & Electrical Assistant Project Managers
Engineers
Summer 2017 Interns & Full Time Positions

 

Keep up-to-date with our recruiting team and events by connecting with our communities on Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In.

 

Special Olympics

Brandt is a proud Blue Ribbon Sponsor of the Special Olympics of Texas competitions. The participants’ smiling faces and courageous hearts are infectious among our employees.

This is a worthwhile volunteer opportunity that many of our employees get involved in every year. Sara Hinojosa, Assistant Project Manager in Dallas, volunteered at the 2016 Spring Games.

“I was so impressed with the number of Brandt employees who make it a priority to take time out of their busy schedules to participate,” Sara said. “We had more than enough volunteers to facilitate the softball throw competition and still provide the participants with an enthusiastic cheering section.”

This year, Brandt employees will volunteer at a wide range of competitions from the Basketball Competition in February to the Bowling Competitions in November.

If you’ve ever considered volunteering with the Special Olympics, keep an eye out for your next opportunity. You could help change a life – maybe even your own!

Below is a list of competitions we will participate in this year. We hope to see you there!

  • February 24 – Area 13 Central Texas Austin Special Olympics Basketball Competition
  • April 4 – Area 2 South Texas Corpus Christi Special Olympics Spring Games
  • May 6 – Area 20 San Antonio Special Olympics Spring Games
  • July 29 –  Area 11 Special Olympics Special Olympics Aquatics Competition
  • November 3 – Area 20 San Antonio Special Olympics Bowling Competition

Staying Protected While Working In the Winter Cold

The team at Brandt knows just how important it is to recognize and address the potential hazards that come with working outside in cold climates. With proper planning in place, employers have the ability to ensure that their employees are kept safe at all times while working through the winter. The following tips are used to reduce the chance of cold stress, hypothermia, frostbite, trench foot and many other cold-induced issues.

  • Wear layered clothing– Wearing multiple layers provides better insulation. Take off layers as you get too warm and put them on as it gets colder. These layers should include a hat or hood, some type of gloves, thermal socks and appropriate eye protection.
  • Stay hydrated– Even during the freezing cold, your body will still sweat when working outside for long periods of time. It is important to remain hydrated throughout the day by drinking water or other warm drinks.
  • Take a break- You know your body better than anyone else. If you begin to feel unusually tired while working in extremely cold or windy weather, take a break indoors to give your body the opportunity to warm up before returning to work.
  • Protect any exposed skin– By utilizing skin creams and moisturizers regularly you are assisting in the prevention of frostbite and other skin issues that can appear from spending long periods of time in the cold.

At Brandt, safety is our top priority on every single project we work on. From our experience and innovation, we have created solutions that are effective and efficient. With our reputation for care and precision, you can be confident that your project will have a safe and successful outcome. To learn more about all of the services we have to offer, contact us today!

4 Signs that it’s Time to Upgrade Your Commercial Heating System

Even though your commercial heating system has remained reliable for many years, at some point it will require an upgrade. A purchase like this can be costly, and you’ll want to be sure an upgrade is truly necessary before breaking out your wallet. Below are four signs it may be time for a new commercial heating system:

1.Expenses

Do you frequently call your heating company needing a repair? If that’s the case, there is a strong chance that it’s time for a new unit. In addition, broken equipment or an inefficient system may be to blame for rising energy bills.

2.Fluctuating Temperatures

Do you notice that some areas are uncomfortably hot, while others are freezing? This could indicate that it is time for an upgrade. To keep everyone comfortable, you’ll need a functioning furnace to maintain set temperatures throughout every area.

3.Age

Unfortunately, heating systems don’t last forever. The older they get, the more likely you will see signs #1 and #2, along with many other potential problems. So, if you are wondering what the first red flag is for needing a new heating unit, it is old age!

4.Noises

Unusual sounds coming from your heating system such as creaking or rattling could indicate something is not functioning properly or is about to break. Some issues may be repairable, but the longer they go on without correction will increase the possibility of system needing to be replaced.

At Brandt, we understand that a well-functioning commercial heating system is crucial. That is why we have created powerful solutions based on experience and innovation, earning us a reputation for care and precision. To learn more about all of the services we have to offer, contact us today!

Importance of Job Site Safety

Brandt considers safety our number one priority, especially with being in the construction industry. OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) reports that nearly 6.5 million people work at approximately 252,000 construction sites across the nation. The fatal injury rate for the construction industry is higher than the national average for all industries.

OSHA lists falls (from heights), trench and scaffold collapse, electric shock and arc flash/blast, failure to use proper protective equipment, and repetitive motion injuries as potential hazards for construction workers.

Here are the top hazards most frequently cited by OSHA and solutions for how to avoid them.

Scaffolding

Hazard: Fall hazards can occur when scaffolds are not erected or used properly. There are an estimated 4,500 injuries and 50 fatalities each year from scaffold-related accidents.

Solutions:

-Scaffold must be sound, rigid, and sufficient to carry its own weight plus four times the maximum intended load without settling or displacement. Scaffold must be on solid footing.

-Scaffold can be accessed by using ladders and stairwells.

-Scaffolds must be inspected and re-inspected by a competent person. The scaffold must be equipped with guardrails, midrails, and toeboards.

Fall Protection

Hazard: Falls account for the greatest number of fatalities in the construction industry. A number of factors are involved in falls so companies should protect workers from all of them.

Solutions:

-Use aerial lifts or elevated platforms to provide safer elevated working surfaces.

-Cover floor holes and use safety net systems or personal fall arrest systems.

-Use guardrail systems with toeboards and warning lines, or install control line systems to protect workers near the edges.

Ladders

Hazard: OSHA estimates that there are 24,882 injuries and 36 fatalities from falls on stairways and ladders in construction, with half of the injuries requiring time off.

Solutions:

-Use the correct ladder for the task and have a competent person inspect a ladder for any defects.

-Mark or tag damaged or defective ladders for repair or replacement or destroy them immediately.

-Make sure that ladders are long enough to safely reach the work area and never load the ladder beyond the maximum intended load.

Brandt stays on top of all safety hazards on our jobsites in order to keep our employees safe on the job.