New Bedford, MA According to Tom Bigelow, founding principal of Bigelow & Fleming, the firm’s involvement of the restoration of the 5-story Standard-Times Building is nearing completion. “We’re really proud and excited to be part of the team on this unique project,” he said.
Bigelow & Fleming was chosen by property owner The Columbus Group for the initial $2.5 million preparation phase of the historic renovation. The 34,000 s/f building was constructed in 1894.
The property, at 555 Pleasant St., opposite the public library, has been vacant since the Standard-Times Newspaper moved to modern offices in 1995. The structure, designed by Peabody and Stearns, is in the Central New Bedford Historic District.
Other members of the project team are historic preservation consultants MacRostie Historic Advisors LLC of Washington, DC, who have been working with the National Park Service to ensure fulfillment of federal tax credit requirements, and Steffian Bradley Architects who designed the renovation.
“Our team’s assignment in the $6 million adaptive reuse project was to gut the five-story, 34,000 s/f building to prepare it for build-outs that will ultimately house offices on floors 2 -5 and a restaurant on the street level,” said Bigelow. Among his key team members are project manager and licensed structural engineer Mike Farrer, and project supervisor John Arruda. Local trades people have been employed for the work.
The work included several complex components:
- Installation of a new elevator in the old airshaft
- Allow access and emergency egress for residents of the adjacent condos throughout this entire initial construction phase
- Installation of new energy-efficient windows had to meet requirements of the Historical Commission
- Installation of new mechanical systems (HVAC, electrical, plumbing and bathrooms) on every floor.
“Removing everything down to the bricks and beams in a 19th century structure – without affecting the shell — takes a highly skilled team,” said Bigelow. “We’re right on schedule, preparing to turn over the shell to the owner in early 2013.”
“We’re excited about the critical part we’re playing to bring back the old Standard-Times Building and restore new life to this part of downtown New Bedford,” said Bigelow. “Our watchword is close collaboration, teamwork and communication. That combination brings our projects together seamlessly and without surprises.”
Bigelow & Fleming, celebrating its 10th anniversary, plans to hand over the shell to the owner/developer around the end of the month – on time and on budget.
Bigelow & Fleming has managed construction projects for such clients as Gillette, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Babson College and Brandeis University. “In addition to new construction, we’ve built a reputation for breathing new life into old buildings,” Bigelow says.
Bigelow & Fleming’s renovation and ground-up construction work is primarily in southern New England and includes biotechnology, education, corporate, healthcare and specialty construction. The firm is celebrating its 10-year anniversary.