The McCarty Companies Ensures Accuracy with GPS Technology
Due to the project's large size, Topcon equipment played a vital role in a commercial building expansion recently completed by McCarty Companies. The building, owned by D & S Realty and located in West Boylston, Massachusetts, is the new corporate headquarters for Curtis Industries, which designs and manufactures cab enclosures for tractors, utility vehicles, and golf carts.
McCarty was the designer, builder, and general contractor on this project, which comprised a 110,400-square-foot addition to an existing 52,000-square-foot building. Company President Patrick McCarty, PE, reports, "We did the design work, all the local and state permitting, the site preparation, utility, and storm water installations. We moved over 30,000 tons of dirt on this job.
"Curtis Industries was previously housed in three separate buildings. In this new headquarters building, executive and engineering offices are located in the existing structure, and manufacturing, assembly, shipping and receiving are located in the addition, along with production-related offices."
Design and permitting for the project began in September 2016, and earthwork got underway in December. McCarty turned the building over to Curtis Industries in September.
"Our Topcon equipment was critical on this job because of the 10-acre size of the project," says McCarty. "With 110,000 square feet of floor, it was a challenge to ensure that the slab was done correctly and accurately. If we had been just 1 inch off with our grading level, that would have amounted to 350 yards of concrete, and could have cost us around $40,000."
McCarty Associates used a Topcon HiPer SR GPS unit for the construction layout. Cable free and weighing under 2 pounds, it features a rugged and fully integrated design, and delivers a 1,000-foot working radius through Topcon's LongLink technology. The LongLink wireless data link was developed specifically for the HiPer SR, and provides reliable and interference-free RTK base-to-rover communications.
A Level Best Para-Level grading box with Topcon GPS controls was bought specifically for this project, says McCarty. "It was important to invest in this equipment, to be sure the floor was graded perfectly and to stay within the estimated amount of concrete," he comments. The Para-Level grading box features machine control technology, and a digital proportional valve to dramatically increase grade accuracy. Its accuracy allows for more precise material estimates, which reduces overages and saves time.
McCarty states, "This is our 35th year in business, and we've used Topcon lasers for as long as I can remember. We have several rotating and other lasers and an FC-500 data collector." The FC-500 utilizes the same touch-screen technology as smartphones; it features a crisp, sunlight-readable display, internal GPS, and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi wireless connectivity.
"We've added equipment as new technologies are offered, such as the Para-Level grading box, our most recent purchase," McCarty continues. "Our Topcon Solutions Store in Stow (Massachusetts) is a fantastic store. There's always a learning curve with new equipment, and they walk through everything with us. When doing that on the phone isn't adequate, they are always available to come out to the job site. Their service - such as calibrating the equipment - is great; they turn things around quickly and get the equipment back in the field. And the store is convenient for us, only 25 minutes away from our office."
A Second-Generation Business
Patrick McCarty is the second generation to run the company that was founded by his father, Daniel, in 1982. Started as a construction management and consulting firm, McCarty Associates has grown into The McCarty Companies, capable of taking a construction project from the concept stage, through site acquisition, permitting, and construction to a completed building, ready for occupation.
Located in Leominster in north-central Massachusetts, the company serves the entire state. It is actually two separate companies - McCarty Engineering, a full-service source for engineering design, permitting, and construction services; and McCarty Associates, which offers site development services, construction management, and project management. Virtually all the companies' business is by referral, McCarty reports, with clients that range from well-known large companies to local developers and manufacturing firms.
Among their other recent projects was the renovation of a 200,000-square-foot building in Devens owned by SMC Ltd, a globally recognized supplier to the medical device and pharmaceutical industries. This project was an interior and full site renovation, including parking areas and landscaping.
McCarty designed and permitted a 35,000-square-foot renovation in Tewksbury for MassAV, a live event and video production firm. The full site and the interior was basically gutted to the studs.
McCarty was also the demolition and site contractor for the Edge Merrimack River Apartments, a private student housing complex for the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, where nearly 70,000 tons of dirt were excavated, processed on-site, and placed and compacted at this former mill site.