NASHVILLE, Tenn.Associated Builders and Contractors Greater Tennessee Chapter awarded Crain Construction Inc. a 2018 Excellence in Construction Eagle Award for its conversion of a dormant auditorium into a state-of-the-art regional television production studio.

The 23rd Annual Excellence in Construction Awards ceremony, held November 1, honors the “best of the best” through an independently judged competition of submitted construction projects. The Eagle Award is the highest honor.

Working on a tight timeline of 86 days, Crain Construction completed the project for Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) and one of its nationally syndicated broadcast programs with a live band and in-person audience.

Crain Construction employed the following solutions to overcome the TBN renovation project challenges:

  • Intense planning and coordination to allow overhead work and leveling of the floor to occur simultaneously;
  • Creative scheduling to accommodate both construction and set design crews;
  • Consistent and ongoing communication with the client, TBN’s crew and the City of Hendersonville; and
  • Quick thinking and innovation on the jobsite.

Working only from schematic drawings provided by the TBN set designer, Crain Construction’s superintendent and project manager figured out the details as they went, providing hand sketches for the majority of the construction details. The project team was on the jobsite every day to direct crews and to resolve any issues during the design/build project. Final as-built drawings were provided at the completion of the project for permit purposes.

Converting the 12,000-square-foot auditorium, built in 1984, included leveling part of the sloped concrete floor and extending the stage 40 feet to double it in size. Before extending the stage, they raised the concrete floor under the existing stage, then framed and built the stage extension while raising the remaining floor around it. Stairs with metal handrails were built on the stage sides.

A unistrut system was installed overhead to support new lighting and sound equipment and set pieces. All overhead work was done from two 65-foot “spider lifts,” due to the height of the auditorium, which were placed in coordination with the work below on the floor.

Once the overhead unistrut supports system was installed and the stage extension was complete, TBN’s crew began night work on the stage set and lighting & sound systems.

Crews also renovated approx. 7,500 square feet in the back-of-house areas that contained offices, green rooms and bathrooms. They replaced carpet, removed about 3,000 square feet of mirrored walls, refinished and painted walls, and installed new countertops and sinks in the bathrooms.

Renovations to the 3,000-square-foot main lobby included painting walls and installing structural supports and electric winches for the chandeliers. EIFS was installed on the building’s exterior front and new stainless steel entry doors were installed in the existing archways.

Existing lighting throughout the building was removed and upgraded to LED lighting. The fire sprinkler system was modified and the mechanical, electrical and plumbing was upgraded.

When the studio audience arrived for TNB’s first weekly broadcast taping of the syndicated show, they may have smelled fresh paint, but the stage was set, the lighting was on, the client was happy and the cameras were ready to roll.

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