Sunday, January 24, 2016

The road not taken: original plan was to have modular company also build B2

The transcript below right, from a 7/30/15 hearing in the endless, unresolved litigation regarding the ill-fated partnership between Forest City Ratner and Skanska USA Building to operate a factory creating pre-fabricated components for the B2 modular tower, quotes Skanska lawyer Bruce Meller:

"The original transaction had the modular company doing the construction work for B2," Meller said. "The original concept was that the modular company would take an assignment of the design, accept the design responsibilities, and then construct the work. That price was too high for Forest City."

Instead, Forest City hired Skanska to construct the tower, assembling the superstructure, placing the modules, and connecting the building systems, among other things.

Skanska blames Forest City for faulty design of the modular plan; Forest City blames Skanska's execution.

Meller brought up the issue because he was talking about changes in the various contracts regarding the project.

The road not taken

It suggests a road not taken: the Forest City/Skanska partnership, known as FCS Modular (and now FC Modular, after Forest City bought out Skanska's share, after a work stoppage and legal volleys) was going to establish a major new business.

Instead, the company was subcontracted to build module. Now Skanska is gone, and Tishman Turner Construction is building B2, aka 461 Dean Street.

FC Modular is now in danger of closing, without any new contracts pending, though it may reboot to produce modules for different kinds of buildings.

Greenland Holdings, the joint venture partner/overseer on Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park, is less willing--and perhaps unwilling--to consider modular for the project.

Had a company been established to build the units and the tower--and the process worked smoothly (which it hasn't)--it could have been a formidable entity.

Then again, given the inherent tensions the even smaller Forest City/Skanska joint venture experienced, maybe that would not have been a wise idea.

4 comments:

  1. Anonymous10:35 AM

    I thought B2 was being built by Turner?

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    1. Anonymous1:33 PM

      At this time it's being built by Turner. But they recently detected mold build up on these modules. I've worked on these apartments. They're prefabricated with no tests as if a kindergarten student built them. I got laid off because we caught up to our trade. The building stopped erecting up to the floor they intended to reach. I hope this is the only modular building on NYC.

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    2. Please contact me--I'd like to learn more.
      Norman Oder
      AtlanticYardsReport[at]hotmail.com

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    3. Please note that I generally do not publish anonymous accusations like this, so I can't guarantee it's accurate and presume readers take it with a grain of salt. However, given the history of mold in the building, it's not implausible... so stay tuned.
      Here's my previous coverage of mold issues: http://citylimits.org/2015/08/31/documents-reveal-woes-at-pioneering-atlantic-yards-building/

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