Repairs needed to prevent moisture seepage in Westinghouse's Cranberry headquarters
Cranberry's top code enforcement officer said the township inspected Westinghouse Electric Co.'s headquarters before the company moved in five years ago but found nothing to indicate that a problem might develop with air and moisture seepage.
The exterior of the sprawling Westinghouse headquarters in the Cranberry Woods industrial park is targeted for “extensive” repairs, the building's owners said.
Problems with fabricated metal panels apparently are letting moisture into the building around windows, said Nelson Mills, president and CEO of Columbia Property Trust of Atlanta, which owns the building. He and a Westinghouse spokeswoman said there is no threat to employee safety.
Cranberry's manager of code administration Jeffrey Musher said he hasn't seen a problem of this potential scope in the 15 years he's worked for the township.
The township averages between $100 million and $200 million in annual construction, he said.
The township's inspection occurred before the building was occupied and followed state guidelines. It covered foundations, sewer and water service, steel construction and electrical service.
Problems after completion of a large construction project aren't unusual, said a real estate director at a local development company.
“Building performance issues are common, even with the best development team,” said Mark Minnerly of The Mosites Co., which has handled large commercial projects such as the Target in East Liberty but was not involved with the Westinghouse project. “Generally, it's a matter of time, energy and frustration in fixing these things, but it's always solvable.”
Westinghouse signed a 15-year lease to occupy the building. It relocated employees to the $200 million complex from Monroeville in 2009 and 2010. There are 3,300 employees in three interconnected buildings.
Mills has said his firm hired a company to examine the building last year, and its findings led Columbia to move ahead with a “more comprehensive fix.” He did not identify the company.
Minnerly said that the best hope when problems are uncovered is “that it's isolated to a few places where you can track it down and fix it.”
“There are so many players involved. The development of a building is a complex project,” Minnerly said.
“Sadly, this does happen,” said James Frantz, president of Tedco Construction in Carnegie. Columbia approached his company about doing an inspection, but another firm did the work. “There are too many structures depending on calking and sealants (to prevent) water penetration,” Frantz said.
He added, “A lot of times, you depend on calk joints, but with contraction and expansion, and cold and thermal expansion, it can tend to create a detriment to sealants.”
Bill Vidonic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5621 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- One vote now separates 2 Republican candidates for Butler County commissioner
- Butler Township commissioners to consider new zoning regulations on gas well pads
- Jackson housing plan goes under over flooding concerns
- 2 votes separate GOP commissioner hopefuls
- Zelienople prepares for 175th anniversary
- Butler veteran benefits from ‘Recycled Rides’
- Evans City pays tribute to its veterans
- Death of woman found near hospital not thought suspicious