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Posted 1/8/2016

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By Amy Newcomb
U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Public Affairs

The U.S. Army Contracting Command’s (ACC) new headquarters building renovation included a $2.3 million furniture procurement project through the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville Furnishings Program.

Sara Cook, a Furnishings Program project manager and interior designer for the project, said this was a full-service project that included provisions for a space planning concept prior to purchasing the furniture.

Space planning involves creating interior spatial areas and developing plans and layouts for furniture and equipment placement.

“Redstone’s Directorate of Public Works gave us the plans in AutoCAD, which is a computer-based program that allowed us to design a layout for the workspaces from the empty shell of the building,” Cook said. “So, if they wanted 50 people in one room then we created the furniture to fit the number of people they needed, per room.”

During the space planning process, the Furnishings Program also considers things like the customer’s project goals and priorities, organizational structure and relationships, as well as building and safety codes and more.

“Health, safety and wellness are a big concern because we have to design our layouts to meet all of the Life Safety Codes per National Fire Protection Agency guidelines,” Cook said. “You also have to design around how many people they need in each area and who needs to work close to one another.”

Understanding the number of people and organizational structure is important information when constructing floor plans, said Krysta Zurowski, who managed the project.

Normally, the Furnishings team receives furniture packages that already include the space planning and design phase. This can add time constraints that do not allow as much interaction with the customer.

“With [Contracting Command] … we had all the information up front so we knew who was going where and we could plan it for them to meet their needs,” she said. “Based on their feedback, they are happy with the furniture. And, we know, based on our furniture specifications and the quality of furniture received, the customer will have a product that will last, so we consider this project a success.”

Additionally, the Furnishings Program was asked to develop a branding solution for ACC’s building. Branding features included an updatable digital and magnetic graphic world map display with the ACC unit crest in the main lobby, as well as display cases and digital graphic visual displays in the command suite areas.

Due to the amount of customized work needed, Huntsville Center’s Special Projects Program (SPP) took on the task.

The $500,000 branding project, the first of its kind for the Huntsville Center SPP, has successfully completed the first of three phases, said Jerad McIntyre, SPP project manager.

“ACC is very pleased with what we did,” McIntyre said. “Our contracting folks really thought out of the box to do this right for our neighbor and customer.”

As the project goes on, the SPP will continue to place 2D and 3D digital graphic displays on each floor, design a mapping system for the entire building and add directional signage, as well as photos and visuals.

ACC celebrated the completion of the new headquarters building on Redstone Arsenal, Alabama with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Jan. 7.

Personnel are scheduled to begin moving into the building later this month with the move to be completed in February.

Furnishings Program interior design redstone arsenal Special Projects Program U.S. Army Contracting Command U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center