July 16, 2020

DPR Construction recently celebrated the topping out of the new HRI Properties dual-branded Hyatt Place and Hyatt House project. Located adjacent to the historic Tampa Old City Hall building, the 364,000 sq.-ft. design-build space will feature 345 hotel rooms, 4,800 sq.-ft. of meeting space, an outdoor rooftop pool, 3,000 sq.-ft. of ground-floor retail space and 220 parking spots, 127 that will be reserved for public use.

To mark the topping out of the HRI Hyatt House and Hyatt Place project, the team signed their names to the building’s final steel beam and watched as a crane elevated it 17 stories into place.

A member of the project team signing the final steel beam. Photo courtesy of DPR Construction

“There is nothing more rewarding than watching the months and months of hard work and planning culminate into a single event signifying the hard work and dedication of all the craft workers who enabled this milestone. We’re all glad to witness the last piece of signed steel soar overhead and into place,” said DPR’s Project Executive, Barry Cole.

The project’s downtown location and dense workspace added a layer of complexity. “Working in a downtown site is always fun! New challenges to tackle can emerge on an almost hourly basis,” said DPR Project Superintendent, John Donovan. Working within a tight footprint, the project team was able to coordinate traffic flow efforts to reduce any potential effects on neighboring businesses while continuing to maintain on-site safety.

“Anytime you’re working in a tight downtown site, there is nothing more rewarding than playing what feels like a real-life game of Tetris. We jockey full-size trucks and equipment around the project like a finely orchestrated dance,” said DPR Project Manager, Jason Page.

The final steel beam is raised into place. Photo courtesy of DPR Construction

DPR self-performed the first-floor drywall and hard lid ceilings, three elevator lobbies, doors, and specialties. Self-perform crews also handled the installation of prefabricated exterior panels. The building’s exterior panels were prefabricated offsite utilizing Digital Building Components’ (DBC) robotic technology. The DBC panels are created in a controlled environment, rather than in the field, to ensure their quality. In a four-month span, the team installed 516 exterior panels, averaging about 12 panels per installation shift, a significant schedule savings compared to traditional exterior framing and Exterior Insulation and Finish System (EIFS) installation.

By using DBC, in addition to the schedule, a labor efficiency was also created. The project had a six-worker crew for the entire panel installation, compared to an average EIFS application which has roughly 50+ workers on the exterior of a building. DBC also promotes cleaner and safer installations by eliminating debris from an EIFS process and also by bypassing the need for mast climbers.

In addition to attracting new business and leisure visitors to the Tampa Bay area, upon its completion, the hotel will provide approximately 70 new employment opportunities. “As we work to recover from the COVID-19 crisis and get our economy back on its feet, we are so excited to celebrate new developments like the HRI Downtown Hyatt House and Hyatt Place Project. DPR Construction has been steadfast in their commitment to keeping our city moving forward safely in the midst of this pandemic. This project will help elevate our tourism industry as we reopen slowly and look forward to welcoming visitors back to our beautiful city in the future,” said Tampa Mayor Jane Castor.