Duluth, Minnesota, located at the westernmost tip of Lake Superior, has beautiful scenery, a rich shipping history and a thriving economy. It also has a relatively short construction season. This means that accurate construction plans are especially valuable on large projects so that all operations can be completed quickly.

Located on the shorefront, at the heart of downtown, is the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center, known as the D.E.C.C. It has undergone a series of expansions and includes 100,000 sq.ft. of exhibit space, a 26,000 sq.ft. ballroom, a 2,400 seat Auditorium that is home to the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra and the Minnesota Ballet. The D.E.C.C. also houses the D.E.C.C. Arena which hosts sporting events, concerts and trade shows. In addition, the area draws crowds to the Bayfront Park, an OmniMax Theater, and various museums. The growing need for parking resulted in a plan for a multistory, post-tensioned concrete parking structure.

When Rueben Johnson & Sons received the contract to build the garage, they asked Symons® by Dayton Superior to devise a plan to form it on a tight schedule, so the team of Garage Beam System designers quickly created a detailed scheme. Even a visit from a Field Service Specialist was included in the proposal!

To form the 12' tall columns quickly, Symons suggested that the contractor use Steel-Ply® forms with Quick Column Hardware. This configuration would allow the contractor to set, strip and move the forms quickly, and minimize the labor associated with concrete column construction.

To create the support beams and deck, the plan utilized the Garage Beam System. The system,which features long beam form assemblies supported by high capacity shoring frames, column and capital forms, wood I-beams and deck panels, is a complete system that speeds construction of parking structures. Even the forklifts to transport beam and deck forms are included in Garage Beam System plans.

Wes Rowe and Steve Moen of Rueben Johnson & Sons were impressed with the plans, so they gave their approval.

When equipment arrived, so did the Field Service Specialist to help the crew assemble the formwork. Setting and stripping procedures were demonstrated to help the contractor jump-start productivity.

The contractor appreciated the assistance, and credits the successful completion of the project to the combination of detailed plans and product support available from Symons.

Garage Beam System

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