Southeast Best Project Award Winners Rise Above Challenges – Engineering News-Record

Norwegian Cruise Line’s new Miami terminal was built on an accelerated schedule thanks to intense reliance on the project’s building information model.
Photo courtesy NV2A-Haskell
This year’s Best Projects contest covered work completed between May 1, 2020, to May 31, 2021. In other words, the period of time that saw the COVID-19 pandemic at its most virulent and impactful to broad sections of the U.S. economy, including the construction industry.
But in spite of that nerve-racking challenge, plus many others, this year’s Southeast Best Projects  honorees demonstrate that the region’s contractors, design firms and project owners nevertheless delivered an impressive array of outstanding construction achievements.
For instance, in Miami, contractors building Norwegian Cruise Line’s stylish new terminal at PortMiami relied strictly on the project’s BIM to quickly procure every piece of material needed so they could meet the owner’s hyper-fast deadline. In the U.S. Virgin Islands, contractors working for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers scrambled to convert an existing National Guards barracks into  a COVID-19 alternate care facility project—in just 22 days.

Gaining top honors as this year’s Southeast Project of the Year, though, was Atlanta’s $321.3-million Water Supply Program project. The heroic effort to timely secure the city of Atlanta’s drinking-water supply for the foreseeable future earned it recognition above all other entries in the minds of this year’s judges.
In our cover story about the project, ENR Southeast quotes Bob Huie, PC Construction’s project director, commenting on the reasons for the team’s success.
“When we encountered problems, we all got together around the table and analyzed issues,” he says. “Everyone shared the risk, understood the problems and participated in solving them. It goes to show that when people come together with a common goal and work in the best interests of the project, you can get some tremendous results.” 
In all, this year’s judges reviewed roughly 95 entries, ultimately choosing 36 for recognition. ENR Southeast’s primary judging panels included: Keith Douglas, The Whiting-Turner Contracting Co.; Tahir Edwards, The Weitz Co.; Jennifer Naizer, Pond; Cary Perkins, McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture; Ray Riddle, Holder Construction; Bobby Teachey, Brownstone Construction Group; Leigh Thomas, WGI Inc.; and Ron Whalen, Roger B. Kennedy Construction.
Additionally, Robbie Ferris of Sfl+A Architecture, judged this year’s Excellence in Sustainability entries, while Bill Walker, formerly of SPC Mechanical, assessed the Excellence in Safety nominees.
ENR Southeast invites its readers to review the following pages to review details of this year’s Southeast Best Projects winners.
AC Hotel Downtown Orlando
Photo by Cloyce Wall
Atlanta Water Supply Program
Photo by PC Construction
Durham County Main Library Renovation
Photo by Mark Herboth Photography
Duke University Wilkinson Building
Photo by SPC Mechanical
Egger Wood Products
Photo by Gray
Kannapolis, N.C., Downtown Revitalization
Photo by Denise Retallack Photography
North Carolina State University Thermal Energy Storage System
Photo by Greenland Enterprises Inc.
GRAIL Laboratory and Research Facility
Photo by Susan Holt

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Scott Judy is Deputy Editor for Regions, and editor of ENR Southeast, one of Engineering News-Record's 10 Regional publications. His roughly 27 years as a construction journalist began with an 11-year stint covering Midwest construction projects. In 2000, Judy helped launch the publication now known as ENR Southeast. He often delves into controversial aspects of the construction industry such as bankruptcies and fatal accidents, and wishes he would never have to cover another accident but suspects that he might.

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