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3000 Point Township Drive Northumberland Pa 17857

University Park Airport Air Traffic Control Tower

State College, Centre County, Pa

Zartman Construction built a seven story air traffic control tower at the University Park Airport.

The Zartman team works on the air traffic control tower.

The 1,870 square foot building footprint was on an extremely tight quarter acre site. At times it was necessary to use some of the parking lot to get the laydown space required.

The local karst geology, along with the heavy building loads, mandated deep foundations for the tower and building. The 18 caissons were four feet in diameter and averaged over 100 feet deep.

The tower itself was constructed from precast panels. The average size for the panels was 28 feet x 12 feet and weighed in at 25 tons. The pieces were stacked six high to a height of 62 feet and are the main structural load path for the building.

It made a 28 foot square box with structural steel lacing the inside together and supporting its five floor levels. The structural steel “cab” topped out the building at 82 feet high.

The Zartman team works on the air traffic control tower.
The Zartman team works on the air traffic control tower.

The complexity and outward slope of the steel and the associated height posed erection and safety issues for the cab. It was deemed most practical to build it on the ground and fly it in to place.

Each 41 square foot piece of laminated safety glass had to be lifted and placed with a crane. The glass is a double pane with an 18 percent tint and special optics.

“As design professionals working all over the country with very special technical and administrative requirements… we tend to have some natural concerns when selecting a contractor from those we have not worked with before.

Zartman proved they are the right contractor for this project”

– Kevin S. Kunde P.E., Project Manager, Mead & Hunt, Inc.

The project won the ABC Excellence in Construction Award for the Best Public Construction Project in 2011.