For those that don’t know, I’m a full-time Project Engineer for a construction company based out of Chicago. The first year out of college I spent bidding work for this company, and then was offered the opportunity to get out in the field to build a senior living facility.
I had been praying to get out of the office and actually be out on a site building something…anything! I love the field. Different activities on a daily basis. You never see or do anything twice. Yet, for some reason when I was asked if I wanted to join the team I hesitated a bit. Maybe it was the fact that this project site was 35 miles ONE WAY from my house. But I told myself, this is what you’ve been asking for…if you don’t take this opportunity, who knows when the next opportunity will be. “Yes, I’ll join the team!” was my response 2 days after the offer.
So I relocated offices and started learning about the project… The Sheridan at Green Oaks, a $45M Senior Living Facility with Independent Living, Assisted Living, and Memory Care Buildings on a 39 acre site. There was an existing building that was used for Scientology on half the site and the other half had town-homes – all of this was to get torn down.
When I first got onsite, there were so many things running through my mind. All the things from is this really what I want to I can’t wait to see this structure go up. As I walked through the massive site, I continuously saw a butterfly. Now I definitely don’t mean to be cheesy, but seeing that butterfly constantly made me believe that this was meant to be and something great was going to come out of this opportunity. As I type this today, 2 years after that summer, I confirm this was the case….but I’ll save that for another post 😉
As demolition started, I was absolutely amazed at the power of the machines as they easily destroyed the building and homes. As we started concrete foundations, I tried to spend most of my time outside watching everything. I asked questions. The men answered. Week after week, month after month this facility was getting its figure.
I believe it’s rare for any project to get built without making changes throughout the life of the construction….both from the design team and the building team. This project went through two complete redesign related to interior design, causing a schedule extension. As for the building team, several personnel changes occurred as well.
The Sheridan at GO means a lot to me. It’s been my first project since I started full-time with this company. I met sooo many great people and learned so much more on the field. We worked with such a great architect whom are now my friends. I look at the aerial photos of the finished product, and I get all the feels because it’s not just building a structure out of brick and mortar, it’s part of you that’s left there and a lot more that you take with you.
Now, on to the next one 😉