In Indianapolis, construction of the 8-story Embassy Suites North Hotel is creating construction news. Unlike most of its local contemporaries, the building frame of Embassy Suites North was designed and built with cast-in-place concrete. Why? Primarily because the concrete contractor bidding the job hired a structural engineer to design the building frame. By forming a design-build team on the project, the structural engineer and concrete contractor were able to make a bid for the entire completed concrete frame that obviously proved competitive with bids for other designs.

DESIGN FEATURES THAT HELPED MAKE THE JOB A SUCCESS

  • Post-tensioned slabs meant fewer walls--The 8-story hotel houses 220 guest rooms. Each guest room is 14 1/2 feet wide. However, rather than having bearing walls every 14 1/2 feet, floor slabs were post-tensioned so they could span 29 feet. This eliminated casting half of the walls that were originally anticipated. Because slabs were post-tensioned, floors could also be stripped sooner.
  • Bearing walls also act as transfer girders.
  • Concrete shear lugs tie floor slab sections together.