Steeplechase 95 International Business Park
- Written by: Steeplechase 95 International Business Park
- Produced by: Steeplechase 95 International Business Park
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Steeplechase 95 International Business Park houses both a Foreign Trade Zone and a Maryland Enterprise Zone, making the 110-acre mixed-use development in located in Capitol Heights, Md., a prime location for both industrial and commercial enterprises. The property conveniently resides strategically off Exit 13 of the Capitol Beltway, within 45 minutes of Washington Dulles International Airport, Baltimore-Washington International Airport, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and the Port of Baltimore, the third largest port in the U.S. The property also happens to border the Ritchie Marlboro Road Interchange, one of the only interchanges developed along the capitol Beltway in the past decade.
Atapco Properties (Atapco), the project’s developer, elected to position the site to accommodate a diverse mix of retail, commercial and light-industrial tenants looking to capitalize on the property’s advantageous location and ample economic incentives. Atapco divided the property into a total of 12 Class A properties capable of hosting buildings between 50,000 square feet and 500,000 square feet, with ample parking space and cargo loading areas buffering each individual development. Atapco supplemented the commercial and industrial spaces with a hospitality development, an eight-site retail pad, and a 26,000-square foot multitenant building, allocated for prime retail and restaurant tenants.
Of course, converting a totally undeveloped site into a cornerstone of local and regional commerce requires a heavy amount of expertise, which is why Atapco enlisted the help of NARDI Construction Inc. (NARDI) to oversee the project. NARDI maintains headquarters in nearby Beltsville, Md., just 30 minutes away from the Steeplechase development, and provides construction management to Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. But it’s not just proximity that makes NARDI a perfect strategic partner for the development; the company approaches every project as an opportunity to build value and a lasting relationship with the client by acting as more than just general contractor and serving as the client’s representative throughout the construction process.
“We take just as much interest in the success of the project as our clients because we believe that turning out a quality product, on time is the only way to do business,” asserts Earl Seboda Jr., senior project manager at NARDI. Atapco opted to employ tilt-up concrete construction in an effort to expedite construction and NARDI naturally stood out amongst the competition as the company has extensive industrial/commercial experience and has constructed over 6 million square feet of concrete tilt-up buildings, ranging from 13,000 square feet to over 500,000 square feet.
NARDI, which employs 25 project managers and site supervisors, maintains a key team of Tilt-up Supervisors certified through the American Concrete Institute for extra peace of mind. The certification process requires professionals to pass a rigorous written exam in addition to providing documentation that the applicant possesses over 4,500 hours of experience in concrete tilt-up construction and over 7,500 hours of overall on-site construction experience.
Time and again the NARDI team proves that its greatest asset is a diverse and highly skilled team of professionals. NARDI permits its talented team enough autonomy to fill multiple roles in the construction process, allowing team members to address client concerns directly and efficiently, which helps forge stronger client relationships in the end.
“When you’re young and you don’t advance, you just go somewhere else,” admits Seboda. “I came across the company while employed elsewhere, and when that company got sold I knew this was the place for me.” Seboda has now been with NARDI for over 15 years ago and many more NARDI employees have been with the company for as long, if not longer.
Building for Tomorrow
In the case of the Steeplechase development, NARDI has combined its team’s prowess in tilt-up construction with an extensive history of tenant build-out projects. The first phase of development included the construction of a 139,000-square foot building, including the site utility work and associate infrastructure, completed in 2006.
This project was swiftly followed by a second contract in 2007 to build a 60,000-square foot concrete tilt-up building and complete the interior finish for Restaurant Depot, a food distributor with clients across Asia and South America. The project required extensive oversight, as the structure required the installation of a state-of-the-art sub-slab refrigeration system and an advanced energy management system (EMS) to help regulate the building’s energy consumption.
NARDI returned to Steeplechase in 2011 to begin work on two more concrete tilt-up structures. The buildings measure 94,000 square feet and 48,000 square feet, respectively, and come complete with high ceilings, 40-foot bays between columns, and state-of-the-art fire suppression systems. “It’s a pretty straightforward project and the weather has been pretty cooperative in 2012 so far,” adds Seboda.
At least part of the project’s smooth progress can be attributed to NARDI’s subcontractor selection. The company maintains high standards for quality and previous experience when considering subcontractors. “Change orders don’t help the project move faster,” chuckles Seboda. “We have a reputation for not running our jobs like that, because we believe you should simply designate responsibilities to the right people in the first place.”
NARDI’s third project at the Steeplechase development is scheduled to open for occupancy in 2013, and already the development has seen healthy leasing activity. Tenants include companies such as Johnson Controls and retail establishments including Chipotle, Subway, Chick-fil-A and a Wawa convenience store and gas station. Though Seboda sees commercial development leveling off in the next few years, the Steeplechase site is far from complete and Atapco continues to pursue the development of a hospitality component. Backed by over four decades in commercial contracting, NARDI Construction Inc. will leverage its experience and client-oriented corporate culture to further the success of the Steeplechase 95 International Business Park and many more expansive, expressive developments to come.
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