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05 Jul

High Rise Creates Multi-Million Dollar Vertical Neighborhood Featured

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When Construction began on the $90 million dollar University Club Tower on the Lakefront in Downtown Milwaukee, nobody could have imagined the complexity and intricacy of the project.


The building which began as a 38 story high rise tower with 54 residences broken up into six typical floor plans turned into a 39 story building with 56 uniquely designed and constructed multi-million dollar residences.

Construction of the project was further complicated by the sequencing of the building. Work had to be performed around items such as the project's tower crane and the man/material hoists. The ability of J.H. Findorff to separate areas of the building for temporary enclosure to maintain construction flow was exceptional. Temporary occupancy milestones later had to be met, as residence Owner's began to take occupancy while areas of the building were still under construction.

The customizing of each unit was done by private design firms. This caused each unit to have it's own schedule. Keith McNamee, the Project Manager for Olympic said, "Our schedule was often dictated by which residences were designed and approved for construction at any given time. It was not uncommon for us to be working on eight or more residences on eight separate floors at one time." The spread out nature of this unique project often required Olympic to have more than 80 workers on site. This presented a series of logistical and supervisory problems for Olympic's Foreman Gerry Everett.

John Feller, Senior Project Manager, for J.H. Findorff and Son was impressed by Olympic's leadership and organization on the project, saying, "Gerry was always one step ahead of the game. More than anything Gerry understood that conflicts or issues needed to be raised timely so that all contractors could benefit from staying on schedule. Gerry played a huge role in keeping us all on track on this project."

Timeliness and accuracy of budgets and final estimates was critical in maintaining the schedules laid out for each unit. Feller later went on to say, "Olympic understood the need for a full time project manager for this complex project, and Keith was exceptional. The project required constant estimating; whether it be unit upgrades or core/shell changes. Olympic stayed on top of this at all times."

"Overall Olympic did an outstanding job at the University Club Tower. Their work is exceptional. They were available any time you needed them and took the time to solve any issues there may have been. Their expertise was a great advantage to us on the project" stated Mike Timmers, Project Manager for J.H. Findorff, "I can't wait to work on another project with Olympic Companies."

The ability of J.H. Findorff to coordinate and lead all of the Contractors on this project made it a very successful project for all the trades involved. All firms and workers on this project should be able to take pride in a very unique and attractive building that now towers high above Lake Michigan.