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Aga Khan Foundation: Islamic Community Center, First In U.S


torvald

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What does that mean? That they are taking samples or something else? 

 

 

Typically this means the client or design team have retained a geotechnical engineer to provide a report that the structural engineer is then able to use to develop their foundation design.  It is not very common for a general contractor to mobilize before that work has been done which is why I am confused on the schedule.

 

They could have been out there for other reasons (subsurface water testing, or supplementary testing) but it is weird and a bit out of sequence.

 

My worry is that they had McCarthy "mobilize" to help with fundraising or for PR purposes, not to actually start construction....

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18 hours ago, tangledwoods said:

 

Typically this means the client or design team have retained a geotechnical engineer to provide a report that the structural engineer is then able to use to develop their foundation design.  It is not very common for a general contractor to mobilize before that work has been done which is why I am confused on the schedule.

 

They could have been out there for other reasons (subsurface water testing, or supplementary testing) but it is weird and a bit out of sequence.

 

My worry is that they had McCarthy "mobilize" to help with fundraising or for PR purposes, not to actually start construction....

 

They did initial soil sampling last year. This may just be to get additional data points.

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  • 3 weeks later...
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  • The title was changed to Aga Khan Foundation: Islamic Community Center, First In U.S
3 hours ago, tangledwoods said:

imagine paying a general contractor 100-200k per month to sit in their office trailers while you scramble for funding.  The apartments across the street will likely finish before this one gets out of the ground.

I doubt any GC is being paid that much for the work being done right now. The cost to rent trailers is a few hundred per month, and they'll cover any labor cost plus an admin fees, which I would imagine are pretty minimal given the site activity.

In regards to fundraising, the group running this is incredibly well capitalized - Money isn't the issue.

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45 minutes ago, hindesky said:

3 trucks and the workers are hard at work applying tape to the tool boxes so they can paint the white portion.

 

39 minutes ago, BeerNut said:

ryan reynolds hd GIF

If I had to guess, the red tops add visibility for forklifts and crane ops. Also, I see two ice machines so at least one of those containers is a break room. I would guess this gets kicked off before the end of April.

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 I doubt any GC is being paid that much for the work being done right now. The cost to rent trailers is a few hundred per month, and they'll cover any labor cost plus an admin fees, which I would imagine are pretty minimal given the site activity.

In regards to fundraising, the group running this is incredibly well capitalized - Money isn't the issue.

No GC will mobilize on a jobsite without MONTHLY fee which includes staffing.  Minimum staffing would be a Superintendent and maybe a PE.  There are 2-3 McCarthy trucks on that site every day and have been for a couple months.  Trust me, they are burning cash.  Hell they even had a truck load of timber delivered that is sitting around waiting to be used.

Painting your connex box is a prime example that McCarthy is just burning hours.  they dont need to do it (no crane is going to run into a connex on the ground).

Hopefully they will break ground soon, but it is hella weird to have staff onsite with nothing but busy work.

 

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Have they in recent years painted their trailers to advertise their company? If not, maybe they're "advertising" their company because of how grand the cultural center is going to be and they want their name associated to the institution. Glass half full

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5 minutes ago, HoustonBoy said:

Have they in recent years painted their trailers to advertise their company? If not, maybe they're "advertising" their company because of how grand the cultural center is going to be and they want their name associated to the institution. Glass half full

Most companies rent trailers but they obviously own these. Almost all the bigger construction companies using fence signs with their names on them.

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I like the structure just fine, but that's clearly not the focus of this document, so hopefully we'll get more details soon.

What I like even better is that they're showing commercial buildings facing Dallas.

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Perhaps the building is a placeholder since this is the Landscape Architect's scope. Maybe they didn't want to steal the spotlight from the Architect.

 

It is odd that the Architect would not have a big reveal for a project as high profile as this.

Edited by shasta
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15 hours ago, tigereye said:

Per C Thomas Hogge, these are competition drawings and are not updated. 

Phew. 

We've waited so long... for this? A beautiful garden & plaza with the most underwhelming worship center. La Luz Del Mundo or even the Chong Hua Sheng Mu Holy Palace would look better here.

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The building reminds me of the entrance to the Shah's palace overlooking the great square in Isfahan. one of the treasures of the Safavid era. I was last there in 1977 , but I remember an elevated open air terrace under a roof supported by tall thin columns facing the irrigated gardens in the center of the square ( more of a rectangle ). The fractal geometry of the tile work and  niches and other decorative elements were at least  impressive those one might find on a Gothic cathedral in Western Europe. It's nice to see the continuation and modernization of an architecture that has historical resonance with this religious sect. 

Palacio_Aali_Qapu,_Isfahán,_Irán,_2016-09-20,_DD_58.jpg

Edited by Skyboxdweller
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15 hours ago, hindesky said:

These are obviously part of the build, I wonder if they are buiding or walkway stones?

abrGX41.jpg

I would think they're part of the building. Here's a look at part of the Ismaili Centre in London. 

garden_of_light.jpg

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So the 18 wheeler trailer must have had the stuff they needed to start the mock up. Boss man in the blue shirt came over to me asking what I wanted, I was outside their gates.  I was kind of hoping he would so I could ask him when this would start and he said he hoped soon, and he confirmed that was the mock up. Someone tagged one of the construction trailers. :angry2:

fcLZ7z4.jpg

qsrdFEg.jpg

v206XxX.jpg

 

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Still no formal renderings released?

Odd that they are being so secretive about what was promised as a high profile piece of architecture. It will also be a tourist magnet for the organization to get their message out so why are they not using this time to keep the public informed....and excited about the project!?!?

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This might be the most confusing project ever.

 

Announce that this will be the first of its kind in the United States of America. Hire a rising international architect to work on the project and have our Mayor proudly boast that this will be very HIGH profile project and a new symbol of Houston's diversity...and then...

 

NOTHING!

 

No updates, no teasers, no presentations, no news, no renderings, nothing...

Edited by shasta
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1 hour ago, shasta said:

This might be the most confusing project ever.

 

Announce that this will be the first of its kind in the United States of America. Hire a rising international architect to work on the project and have our Mayor proudly boast that this will be very HIGH profile project and a new symbol of Houston's diversity...and then...

 

NOTHING!

 

No updates, no teasers, no presentations, no news, no renderings, nothing...

Both @Urbannizer and @MidCenturyMoldy posted possible renderings but they were asked to take them down.

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Does anyone know how the other Aga Khan projects have proceeded around the globe, since this method could be the way they have always operated?  Secretive for little reason other than their founder wants it this way.

Edited by arche_757
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This place gives me all kinds of Palace of the Golden Orbs vibe:

https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/palace-of-the-golden-orbs

Although Aga Khan appears to be a much more real organization with much better funding, I cant quite shake off my doubts related to their past tax issues with the site, and their non-existent time frame for actually bringing the project forward.

The project has been in planning for 15+ years and they have chosen now to break ground, which blows me away.  There has never been a more expensive time to break ground on a new construction project in Houston, TX.... We are facing across the board price increases and delays for common building products.

If you would like to read some industry gossip, here is the latest inflation report from the AGC:

https://www.agc.org/learn/construction-data/agc-construction-inflation-alert

 

I'll retreat to my safe place and continue to pray to the optimism / positivity gods.

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19 hours ago, arche_757 said:

Does anyone know how the other Aga Khan projects have proceeded around the globe, since this method could be the way they have always operated?  Secretive for little reason other than their founder wants it this way.

"Leader," you mean. Their founder lived 13 centuries ago.

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19 hours ago, hindesky said:

Both @Urbannizer and @MidCenturyMoldy posted possible renderings but they were asked to take them down.

The fact that I was asked to take down the post because its publication violated a non-disclosure agreement  signed by the landscape architect leads me to believe the renderings were possibly the real deal.

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20 hours ago, arche_757 said:

Does anyone know how the other Aga Khan projects have proceeded around the globe, since this method could be the way they have always operated?  Secretive for little reason other than their founder wants it this way.

Apparently it took 12 years from purchasing the land to opening the building in Toronto. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ismaili_Centre,_Toronto

Edited by MidCenturyMoldy
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