Walls & Ceilings Architect/January 2008 - (Page 24)

ICFs Convert T wo decades after he built his first apartment building and only two months into his fi rst ICFs project, Richard Colasuonno has no intention of ever building another stick-frame building again. Colasuonno serves as general contractor for the building side of Connolly and Colasuonno LLC, of which he is also partner. The firm owns 3,200 apartments in and around its Plainfield, N.J., headquarters. And in a few months, that figure will grow by 200 when Colasuonno fi nishes Hillside Valley Apartments in Allentown, Pa. It is a sprawling 10-building complex that his 18-man crew began building in August. A long-time general contractor’s desire to pour his own foundations leads to dramatic switch from traditional construction techniques. By Jay McNally FITS LIKE A GLOVE “This system fits us like a glove,” Colasuonno told Walls & Ceilings. “We believe that the ICFs system allows for a profit that is superior to conventional wood-framed structures. There is also a savings from the energy standpoint for the tenant.” When asked why he started using ICFs only a few months ago, Colasuonno laughed as he recalled his former skepticism. “I remember 20 years ago when we went to builders shows and walked past booths where ICFs were being displayed. I’d look, walk right past and say, ‘yeah right.’” He acknowledged that like so many of his peers in the construction industry, change takes time: “We builders and developers don’t like to fall outside of convention and tradition.” Quite aside from the major money he expects to save in energy costs once the buildings are finished, Colasuonno said a main reason he began investigating the possibility of using ICFs was that he didn’t much like having to subcontract out the concrete work for the foundations and basements. “I like to use my own people for everything when I can. We have our own excavators, dozers, handling equipment, everything is ours,” Colasuonno explained. “On this project we are doing everything; site improvement, framing, roofing, siding, interior drywall, insulation, flooring. The only thing we are farming out is electric and plumbing. These licensed trades are always very independent, and I like to have everything under my roof.” As he was scouting around trying to see if he could get his own crew to pour the foundations and basements, Colasuonno remembered that a contractor friend of his had used ICFs and was quite satisfied with the experience. His friend’s referral led to a meeting earlier this year with Tom Reilly, 24 | Walls & Ceilings Architect | January 2008

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Walls & Ceilings Architect/January 2008

Walls & Ceilings Architecture/January 2008
Trade News
Special Spec Sheet Section
Making EIFS Look Easy
ICFs Convert
Greenbuild '08
The Finish Line
Cracking the Code

Walls & Ceilings Architect/January 2008