Happy Holidays from Gontram Architecture!

A sincere “Happy Holidays” from Gontram Architecture to you!  As part of our annual holiday tradition, we’ve produced another episode in a long series of “odd” animated videos:How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_6-01

How to Construct a Snowman – Part 6 – Fun in the Snow…With Zoning!

This definitely falls under the “Other nonsense” category…

In Part 6 of our “How to Construct a Snowman” video series, Ned Ledbetter embarks on a new strategy to reach the masses: a Video Blog. Join Ned as he updates the public on recent weather events, changes to field inspections, and other items of interest. He also dives in to the world of Twitter.How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_6-03

A special “thanks” goes to Dave Schulz of Schulz Ironworks for providing the voice of Ned.

View the video HERE.

You can also view Part 1 thru 5:How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_6-02

Part I – How to Construct a Snowman: A Zoning Enforcement Officer’s Perspective

Part II – How to Construct a Snowman: The Design-Bid-Build Process

Part III – How to Construct a Snowman: Financing a Snowman with Hot Chocolate.

Part IV:  How to Construct a Snowman:  Navigating the Politics

Part V: How to Construct a Snowman: Lighting your Snowman

If having trouble viewing the YouTube version, try the Flash version in a new window. Flash Player is required. Free download available at http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/.

Sigma Nu – NCSU – Grand Opening

Front of Sigma Nu house

Front of Sigma Nu house

On Friday, January 3rd, 2014, the brothers of the Beta Tau chapter of Sigma Nu Fraternity at North Carolina State University were presented with a huge gift (and an awesome responsibility) in the form of a new $4.2 million fraternity house.  A video of house features can be viewed HERE.

Dignitaries, alumni and project partners gathered for a ribbon cutting ceremony.  See some of the Dedication Ceremony Highlights video HERE.

The guys moved in the following day, just before the start of the Spring semester.

Schematic rendering

Schematic rendering

Gontram Architecture was there from conception to delivery.  What started as a quick sketch in 2007 (to see if fundraising was viable) turned into a Ground Breaking Ceremony in 2009.  Some very real financing issues delayed the project for some time, but hard work continued in the background until building permits were obtained in 2012.  The fraternity finally realized their dream 6-1/2 years after the journey began.

Front of Sigma Nu house

Front of Sigma Nu house

The original design sketched out in 2007 was refined, pushed, prodded, and poked, but the concept is essentially unchanged.

  • Oversized porch columns reflect a strong and stable structure and foundation – the brothers currently in the house as well as the thousands of alumni that have come before them.
  • A roof lantern provides a beacon for alumni.  It’s with strong alumni support and participation that fraternities can thrive.
  • As residents enter the house, the roof lantern and grand lobby force eyes skyward, reminding them to have lofty goals and never settle for complacency.
Alumni Library

Alumni Library

To the credit of its House Corporation president, Howard Pickett and many generous Sigma Nu alumni (such as Randall Ward), those architectural elements were never sacrificed for budget reasons, though they very easily could have been as money got tight.

On January 3rd, a fraternity’s dream was realized.  The alumni of the Beta Tau chapter of Sigma Nu fraternity stepped up big time, and handed the keys of the house (a house as nice as any on the East coast) to the active brothers of the chapter.

Dining Room

Dining Room

Now, it is up to all that come after to maintain this level of excellence, and for other fraternities to try to match it – no small feat.

For more information on the project, please check out our Website.

Entry Vestibule

Entry Vestibule

Happy Holidays from Gontram Architecture!

A sincere “Happy Holidays” from Gontram Architecture to you!  As part of our annual holiday tradition, we’ve produced another episode in a long series of “odd” animated videos:

How to Construct a Snowman – Part V – Lighting your SnowmanHow_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 lights

This definitely falls under the “Other nonsense” category…

In Part V of our “How to Construct a Snowman” video series, Ned Ledbetter, recently impeached councilman and returning Zoning Enforcement Officer educates us on the ins and outs of lighting your snowman at night, complying with the National Electric Code, the International Energy Code, and the Patient Protection and Affordability Act. How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 miley

A special “thanks” goes to Dave Schulz of Schulz Ironworks for providing the voice of Ned.

View the video HERE.

How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 textYou can also view Part I, II, III and IV:

Part I – How to Construct a Snowman: A Zoning Enforcement Officer’s Perspective

Part II – How to Construct a Snowman: The Design-Bid-Build Process

Part III – How to Construct a Snowman: Financing a Snowman with Hot Chocolate.

Part IV:  How to Construct a Snowman:  Navigating the Politics

If having trouble viewing the YouTube version, try the Flash version in a new window. Flash Player is required. Free download available at http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/.

How to Construct a Snowman – Part V

How to Construct a Snowman – Part V – Lighting your SnowmanHow_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 lights

This definitely falls under the “Other nonsense” category…

In Part V of our “How to Construct a Snowman” video series, Ned Ledbetter, recently impeached councilman and returning Zoning Enforcement Officer educates us on the ins and outs of lighting your snowman at night, complying with the National Electric Code, the International Energy Code, and the Patient Protection and Affordability Act. How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 miley

A special “thanks” goes to Dave Schulz of Schulz Ironworks for providing the voice of Ned.

View the video HERE.

Gontram Architecture and G5 Design-Build produced this animated feature to help celebrate the Holiday Season and the impending winter weather.How_to_Construct_A_Snowman_5 text

You can also view Part I, II, III and IV:

Part I – How to Construct a Snowman: A Zoning Enforcement Officer’s Perspective

Part II – How to Construct a Snowman: The Design-Bid-Build Process

Part III – How to Construct a Snowman: Financing a Snowman with Hot Chocolate.

Part IV:  How to Construct a Snowman:  Navigating the Politics

If having trouble viewing the YouTube version, try the Flash version in a new window. Flash Player is required. Free download available at http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/.

Sigma Nu – NCSU – 042

Boilers in mechanical room

Boilers in mechanical room

In just a couple of weeks, the Sigma Nu Fraternity House at North Carolina State University will be complete.  Furniture arrives mid-December and will be waiting for the guys to move in during the first week in January, just before the start of the Spring semester.

Air Handler #1

Air Handler #1

One of the features of the house is the mechanical system.  Each resident will have control of his own thermostat.  A variable air volume (VAV) box is dedicated to each bedroom.  A roof-mounted chiller sends cold water to three large air handlers (one in the mechanical room on the ground floor and two on the roof).  The air handlers send cold air via ductwork to the VAV boxes throughout the house.  Two boilers send hot water to each VAV box.  The thermostat tells the VAV box how to mix the temperature for that room.

Exhaust ducts from the kitchen hood and dishwasher hood installed and turned up towards roof.

Exhaust ducts from the kitchen hood and dishwasher hood installed and turned up towards roof.

An overall Building Management System keeps track of these systems and can shut them down or ramp them up as demand requires.  This entire system is much more efficient than a conventional split system type of arrangement common for these houses.

Completion date is scheduled for mid-December of 2013.  For more information on the project, please check out our Website.

Exterior stair at rear of house

Exterior stair at rear of house

Concrete pavers on rear Balcony.

Concrete pavers on rear Balcony.

Sigma Nu – NCSU – 041

The Sigma Nu Fraternity House at North Carolina State University will be complete within a few weeks.  Final touches are underway.  The video link above provides a view of the exterior and a few key interior spots such as the Lobby entrance, dining room and ground floor common areas.

The telecommunications wiring is underway and will be complete next week, giving the residents complete phone, internet and cable television access.

Concrete floors on the ground floor were stained last weekend.

Cabinetry and wood trim installation continues.

The mechanical system was getting ready to be started.  This complex system will give each resident control over their own thermostat.

Completion date is tentatively scheduled for mid-December of 2013.  For more information on the project, please check out our Website.

Sigma Nu – NCSU – 040

Landscaping installed around house

Landscaping installed around house

The Sigma Nu Fraternity House at North Carolina State University is rapidly nearing completion.

Landscaping was essentially completed this week.  Sod, bushes and mulch adorn the building perimeter.

Carpet installation is underway on the 2nd floor.  Plumbing fixtures have been installed on all floors.  Final paint is underway.

Cabinetry and wood trim installation nears completion throughout the house.

Carpet and cabinetry installed in Alumni Library

Carpet and cabinetry installed in Alumni Library

Completion date is tentatively scheduled for mid-December of 2013.  For more information on the project, please check out our Website.

Elevator equipment installed

Elevator equipment installed

Raised panel doors, bathroom vanities installed

Raised panel doors, bathroom vanities installed