Sharp Chula Vista Ocean View Tower Topping Out

The Sharp Chula Vista Ocean View Tower celebrated its topping out on November 16 after placing almost 1800 tons of structural steel and 4,000 cubic yards of concrete. The topping out of a building is a celebrated construction milestone for the entire team. It is a tradition that goes back to 18th Century Europe and includes the hoisting of the final beam topped with a tree and an American flag to the top of the structural framing. The entire project team signs the beam. The ceremony signifies a celebration of a safe construction site, looking forward to the completion of the project and good wishes for the building and its future inhabitants.

Michael Braund, Chad Closs, and Matt Barnard at the Topping Out

Degenkolb Engineers’ Principal, Matt Barnard, reflects on this project and the process so far: “This project is special. A best-in-class design and the construction team is delivering big time on this design-build project. It is truly a team effort and we cannot express enough our respect and gratitude to our teammates in reaching this important milestone. Huge credit goes to Sharp Healthcare, Hensel Phelps, SmithGroupJJR, AVRP Studios, OSHPD, The Herrick Corporation, SidePlate, Twining, Inc., exp, and everyone else on the project. Ultimately, it is not about what we are doing as a design-build team. What makes this project truly special is the magic that the caregivers of Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center will soon be able to provide to San Diego and the South Bay community in this beautiful state-of-the-art building. It is inspiring to know all of the lives that will be improved through this addition to the medical center.”

Sharp Chula Vista Ocean View Tower steel framing

Under the strong leadership of Principals Matt Barnard and Michael Braund, the Degenkolb Engineers team including Chad Closs (Associate), Peter Maloney (Design Engineer), Alex Motzy (Designer), Octavio Cortes Macouzet (Designer) and Jose Brambia (BIM Specialist), has successfully delivered an efficient structure that is successfully blended into the architecture. As with every project, there have been surprises and opportunities. This project was designed with numerous moving parts all the while consistently meeting or beating an aggressive incremental review schedule. The ability to adapt to these surprises and embrace the resulting opportunities by this structural engineering team, and really be the entirety of the project as a whole, stands out.

Signatures on the topping out beam

When asked about the particular significance of the topping out ceremony for a structural engineer, Matt Barnard responded: “It is that moment when the owner, all of the builders, the inspection team, and us really can sit back for a moment and be amazed by what we have done together. The work we have shared creating the structure is on full display. It is a great accomplishment and it means a lot that everyone wants to celebrate it. It is a bittersweet moment as well. We do what we do because of the people we work with every day. But after the topping out, we know that this team of builders, inspectors, and us designing and building the structure will soon be shifting our focus elsewhere to different parts of the project or even to other sites.”

Click here to see video of the tapping out beam being raised on the Sharp Healthcare Facebook page.

For more information please contact:
Matt Barnard