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A perfect blend

Project team combines efficiency, security

Photos by John J. Korom Photography

Photos by John J. Korom Photography

The construction team behind American Transmission Co. LLC’s new corporate headquarters and operations center had to blend two existing structures with different functions into one building.

Site owner Ridgeview Office III LLC sought innovative solutions from the Brookfield office of M.A. Mortenson Co., Minneapolis, and Milwaukee-based Zimmerman Architectural Studios Inc., and the collaboration yielded a state-of-the-art, 152,000-square-foot building in the RidgeView Office Park in Pewaukee. The $55.5 million project, completed in June 2009, combines a 118,000-square-foot sustainable office building with a 34,000-square-foot secure operations center.

Nearly 300 ATC employees work in the new corporate headquarters, and the operations center maintains power systems across southeastern Wisconsin.

“The biggest challenge we encountered, not only in construction but all throughout the planning and design process as well, was how to get two buildings with very different purposes to seamlessly look good together and work well together as one building,” said project manager Mark Tomsyck of Mortenson. “That was the biggest hurdle that we overcame.”

To successfully meet that challenge, the design and build team focused on ATC’s core requirements — flexibility of the office building to meet ATC’s changing needs and rigid security for the operations center.

The result is a highly transparent, sustainable facility with high levels of comfort, adaptability and safety.

The project team installed raised-access floors throughout the office building, and heating and cooling systems are beneath the floors rather than overhead. That approach added to the building’s efficiency and flexibility.

“Those would not be the systems of choice for a normal office building,” Tomsyck said, “but they allow ATC to be very flexible in the future to adjust layouts and move walls, office spaces and conference rooms as they need to.”

The security aspect of the project was never far from the minds of project leaders, he said.

“Everyone on our team became acclimated to ATC’s security protocols,” Tomsyck said, “and we communicated with each other to best provide the infrastructure they needed.”

Other notable aspects of the project include a 20,000-foot LiveRoof green roof system, two separate concrete curved walls in the office building and a specific plan for parking.

“Putting the parking in a consolidated location provides for occupant comfort with patios and green spaces that most offices can’t provide near the building,” Tomsyck said. “It made the site better overall in the end.”

American Transmission Co.’s Corporate Headquarters

Location: Pewaukee

Submitting company: M.A. Mortenson Co., Brookfield

Construction Manager: M.A. Mortenson Co.

Architects: Robert E. Lamb Inc., Norristown, Pa.; Zimmerman Architectural Studios Inc., Milwaukee

Engineers: Pierce Engineers Inc., Milwaukee; Ring & DuChateau Inc., Milwaukee

Owner: Ridgeview Office III LLC

Project size: 152,000 square feet

Project cost: $55.5 million

State date: March 2008

Completion date: June 2009

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