In early 2013, Northrop Grumman announced the creation of five Centers of Excellence around the country to improve its strategic alignment with customers' need for increasingly innovative and affordable products, services and solutions. Northrop Grumman selected The Austin Company to provide architectural design, engineering and construction management services in support of this national program.
Northrop Grumman’s campus in Melbourne, Florida, was designated as one of the five Centers of Excellence – A Manned Aircraft Design Center of Excellence. In support of this designation, Northrop Grumman relocated one of its major manned aircraft programs from Bethpage, New York, to the Melbourne campus, requiring the construction of Building 228.
The building accommodates program management and engineering teams, as well as integration laboratories. The exterior is precast concrete, with low-e high-performance and hurricane projectile-resistant window glazing.
To meet the target schedule for this relocation, the new 210,000 SF building would have to be implemented in just over one year. The approach required flexibility to develop design and engineering drawings out of a traditional sequence. The design and engineering team was driven by the construction schedule and maintained close coordination with the Construction Management team. Following this fast-track schedule, the project reached completion 58 weeks from the start of design to occupancy, and 42 weeks from groundbreaking to occupancy.
Nearly 1,400 construction tradesmen worked on the project up to 18 hours a day in shifts, six days a week, over the course of the project. At any time, more than 300 construction tradesmen and supervisors were working on the project.
“The establishment of Northrop Grumman’s Manned Aircraft Design Center of Excellence and the supporting construction of the facility that we now call Building 228, is nothing short of a Herculean task … The fast track, design-build project, resulting from 42 weeks of construction activity from ground breaking to beneficial occupancy, is a testimony to the dedicated hard work of The Austin Company A&E and Construction Management staff and their many trade contractors. An extraordinary accomplishment, proving anything can be achieved when there is a shared goal and singular team approach.”
– Bill Trillo, Director, Site Facilities Management East for Northrop Grumman
In addition, an important consideration in the building’s design and construction was the integration of environmental and sustainability practices. The project incorporated LEED® features across numerous categories, including: alternative transportation – preferred parking for low emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles, water efficient landscaping, water use reduction, optimized energy performance, green power, regionally sourced materials, recycled materials and construction waste management. The building was subsequently awarded LEED® Silver certification.
"At Northrop Grumman we're committed to protect the environment and natural resources in the communities where we work and live. Our newest building, 228, not only provides a safe and healthy workplace for our employees, it was constructed in a manner to minimize adverse impacts on our environment."
– Bill Trillo
Read about Building 228 in Civil + Structural Engineer magazine and "sister" Building 229.