The Hagerman Group (THG) – The Harrison
The Hagerman Group (THG) is a commercial, industrial and institutional general contractor developing a brand new multiuse building in downtown Fort Wayne, Ind., where the company is based. The Harrison, named for its location in Harrison Square, is four stories tall and includes retail, parking and residential space. “We broke ground on this project in November 2011,” says Tom Werling, project manager for THG. The team will complete the project in early 2013.
THG is a family-owned and -operated company. William Hagerman founded the business in 1908 with his brother-in-law. Today, William’s grandson, Mark Hagerman, is the company CEO and runs the family business with his son Jeff Hagerman, president of THG. The team maintains the same principles lay down by William over 100 years ago. THG is focused on delivering quality, innovative solutions through technology and a culture of occupational safety.
The company has completed a wide variety of projects in the commercial, institutional and industrial sectors. THG continues to diversify, adding new, challenging endeavors to its corporate portfolio every year. The business offers design-build, planning and construction management services. With a strong set of capabilities, THG can perform a large portion of work in house and relies on local, reliable subcontractors for trades and services outside its scope.
A Tight Space
The project presented some logistical challenges for THG. “This is a really unique build,” says Werling. “It’s the first of its kind downtown. This is a multiuse building. The first floor is part cement parking garage and part retail and commercial space. The second is office space, constructed with structural steel. The third and fourth floors are high-end, luxury apartments that are wood-constructed.” None of the structural specifications provided major obstacles for the contractor, but the site’s location was tricky.
The Harrison is positioned between four-lane West Jefferson Boulevard and Parkview Stadium, home of minor league baseball team, the TinCaps. “The site limitations are pretty tight,” explains Werling. “We were operating on Lean principles. Materials distribution and deliveries were driving the schedule as much as possible.” With proper planning and inventive storage, THG was able to get around the challenges. In July 2012 the team enclosed and capped off the building. Interior finishes are all that remains, and retailers and residents could be moved in by February.
The Building Process
THG was able to perform a majority of the work on The Harrison. “We poured all of the concrete, we built the wood-frame structure and we’re finishing the interior,” notes Werling. “As far as subcontractors, we initially handpicked a select amount of subs that are reputable, and we let those people bid on this project. Our choices were based on past performance. This is a unique project, and we needed diverse, reliable subs.”
Management is playing a major role in this project. “We needed to really keep everyone on the same page,” explains Werling. “There is a lot to keep on top of. We need to make sure everyone understands the progress of the schedule. There are applications to pay and finances to track. Our work force and our subs need to be able to see the big picture. They’re accountable. The super on site has weekly meetings.” THG utilizes communication for every aspect of the project and so far, the project is on schedule and the team has reported no major incidents or setbacks.
Local real estate firm, BND Commercial Real Estate Solutions, holds the listings for the building, and is working to secure residential and commercial tenants before completion. Altogether, there are 43 apartments at the Harrison, several retail spaces ranging from 1,500 square feet to 11,800 square feet in size, and several office suites (all of which have been leased as of October 2012).
The Harrison marks a trend in city design, bringing, living spaces, workspaces and leisure together in a single, self-contained block. “This project is part of the revitalization of Harrison Square,” relates Werling. The revitalization project is an ongoing city initiative. The Parkview Field and a nearby Courtyard by Marriott Hotel are other projects included in the effort. Fort Wayne is working with existing businesses and attractions to breathe life into the downtown area.
Multiuse buildings have become popular in recent years and have been found to stimulate local economies by drawing in new businesses and consumers. As a successful portfolio piece, the Harrison project will also serve as a standing referral for THG. This unique project is showcasing the company’s capabilities. The Hagerman Group has put together a unique structure with community benefits, and continues to diversify its capabilities and attract new business.
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