Title: Shop talk
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00090043/00003
 Material Information
Title: Shop talk
Series Title: Shop talk
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Physical Plant Division, University of Florida
Publisher: Physical Plant Division, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: Summer 2005
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00090043
Volume ID: VID00003
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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( From the Physical Plant Division of the University of Florida
www.ppd. ufl. edu

Mission Statement:
We create and maintain facilities for the university community.

Working' On The Night Crew
It's 10 PM on a Tuesday night, and the streets of the University of Florida campus
are mostly deserted. The usual hum of activity is reduced to a few straggling students
making their way down the empty sidewalks, under pools of light from fluorescent
streetlamps. Classrooms and administrative buildings stand silent, lit windows with no
one behind them. For most UF employees and students, the quiet campus is a little
surreal. But for Lennon Fisher, it's just the start of another day at work.
Lennon, a solidly-built former Army vet, is a nighttime Custodial Supervisor at
Physical Plant's Building Services Division. He has worked the night shift off and on
during his 20 years with PPD. "I've been working with the floor crew for fifteen years,"
he said. "This particular shift, which is 10 PM to 6:30 AM, I've been working that now for
six years. I like it there's so much less traffic out here, and we can get twice the work
done that we could during daytime."
The floor crew is Lennon's main responsibility, but he is currently overseeing a
second crew while their supervisor, Albert Smith, is on disability leave. "Right now I'm
in charge of four employees on the floor crew, and another five employees on what we
call the garage crew," he said. "The floor crew is responsible for maintaining the floors
and halls in all E&G buildings on campus. The garage crew is responsible for cleaning all
Aaron Hutchinson kicks up a parking garages, making sure they stay in good shape."
cloud of dust as he cleans the Tonight the floor crew is working inside Building 723, Chemical Engineering. Lennon
stairs in the Shands parking meets up with the four-man group Pierre Barton, Reggie Bradley, Dana Hayes and
garages, east of Newell Drive. Richard Preston outside the building. They load equipment into the elevator and ride
up to the third floor, to begin stripping and waxing the halls.
"The wax we use is supposed to last five years,"
Lennon says. B it Ihal depends on the traffic in the build-
ing some of our buildings, we have to re-wax them after
a year goes by."
On the third floor, the crew sets up their equipment -
mops, buckets of wax and stripping agent, electric floor
buffers, and a giant wet/dry vacuum, nicknamed "the Big
Boy". They move all the furniture out of the halls in prepa-
ration for waxing.
"Sometimes people (in the buildings) will help us out
by moving things out of the halls and rooms ahead of
time," says Richard. "That helps us out a lot and saves a
lot of time. Everything that we move, we try to put it back
in exactly the same place that we found it."
The members of the floor crew say they enjoy work-
ing the night shift, and most of them hold down second
jobs or go to school during the day. "Being able to work
nights allows me to keep my day job," says Pierre. "And I
like the atmosphere out here at night a lot less traffic,
less people to deal with this late in the evening."
The waxing process begins with a through sweeping The PPD overnight floor crew, left to right: Lennon
Fisher, Reggie Bradley, Richard Preston, Pierre Barton,
See NIGHT CREW Continued On Page 2 and Dana Hayes.


Summer 2005

NIGHT CREW Cont. From Pg. 1
of the halls. Next, Lennon mops a chemical stripping agent onto the floor to bring up the old wax. All the members of the crew are
wearing rubber boots, as the stripped wax causes the floors to become extremely slippery. After the stripping agent is laid down,
Reggie takes control of a propane buffer, scrubbing the old wax away. Pierre uses a squeegee to pull the now-liquified mixture into
the middle of the hall, while Richard comes behind him with the Big Boy to vacuum up the residue. Once the halls are cleared of

old wax, Dana brings in a bucket of new wax and begins laying it down with a
special mop. The crew will apply between 5-8 coats of new wax to each floor.
They work quickly and with precision, each member performing specific
duties. "On a good night we can get a lot of floors done," says Reggie. "It
depends on the number of floors per building, and how much foot traffic is
going on that night, but I think we usually average 2-3 buildings per night."
It's now almost 2 AM, and Lennon is ready to check up on the garage crew.
This crew spends the night making the rounds of each of the 13 parking ga-
rages on campus. Theirjob is to remove all debris from the parking areas and
stairs, sweep the lots, and clean the elevator areas and windows where neces-
Senior Custodian Aaron Hutchinson is the first member of the crew we
find, just east of Shands Hospital. He uses a backpack-mounted leaf blower to
clean dust and debris off the stairs at each corer of the garage.
"This thing weighs about 35 pounds," he says with a smile. "During the
course of the night I go up and down about 60 flights of stairs, and it's quite a
workout. I've been on this shift for seven months, so that I can go to school
during the day here at the university. You couldn't do this job during the
daytime, just too many people and cars to deal with out here."
Lennon adds, "You should see the chaos this crew has to deal with follow-
ing the football games we go through there and you have all these folks
who've been partying all day, we're trying to clean around them, around their
cars... thousands of people are trying to leave campus and we have to deal
with that traffic. After the Tennessee game we had piles of trash everywhere in
these garages, overflowing the trash cans. This crew puts in some serious
work on those
nights, just unreal

Old wax gets liquefied and removed by
Reggie Bradley and his electric scrub-
ber. "Guiding this thing is easier than it
looks, "said Reggie. "It's all in the

The other members of the crew James Carsey, Linda Davis,
Leonard Garrison, and Thanh Nguyen are scattered throughout the
garage on individual tasks. Leonard
carries a blower like Aaron, walking
amongst the parked cars and shoot-
ing trash and dirt from beneath
them into the middle of the aisles.
James then comes behind on a
sweeper, a four-wheeled contrap-
tion that looks like a mutant riding
lawnmower, and picks up the trash
James Carsey uses a sweeper to pick up trash with vacuuming attachments
from the aisles of a parking garage. mounted on the machine. Mean-
while, Linda and Thanh empty garbage cans and clean the remaining areas of the garage.
Aaron says, "We do this loop each night, covering every garage. If we get finished early,
we come back and do extra things like cleaning the handrails on stairs, little detail work like that.
We've got a couple people out sick right now, but that just means the rest of us have to pick up
the slack it's our responsibility to keep these areas clean, and I think we do a nice job ofthat." Pierre Barton scrapes old
As the sun starts to rise over Gainesville, and students and professors begin to straggle wax and debris out of a
into campus, the night crews are just finishing their shift. Their faces are largely anonymous, doorway. "Little details
but the work they accomplish is very visible to the rest of campus. Gleaming floors and well- like this make a big
swept parking garages are often taken for granted however, many hard hours are spent difference in the finished
overnight on these areas. product," he said.
"I feel like the night crew is a very important part of PPD and UF," says Lennon, smiling.
"We might not get noticed the way the daytime crews do, but I think that we do a great job, and I would hope that people can
appreciate the work that we put into making the University look good."

7 Director: Dave O'Brien

UF Bridges Moves East To Waldo Road
As part of the University of Florida's expansion eastward, Physical Plant's Architecture and Engineering Department has
recently completed a renovation project on a former DOT building at 2008 NE Waldo Road. The structure, UF Building #1603, was
originally used as a laboratory for DOT's Materials Science department, and underwent major improvements in order to be
converted to office space for UF's Bridges staff.
Project Manager Jay Beckenbach was in charge of the conversion. "The building dates from the 1950s," he said. "We
basically had to gut the entire structure in order to bring it up to modem office building standards, as it was not suitable for office
use in its previous state."
Originally, the building was intended to house the Bridges staff,
as well as staff from several other departments. Plans were drawn up
to create "loft space" within the building, which could then be used
in a variety of ways. "Think of it in terms of a shopping center,"
Beckenbach said. "They're built around a major tenant, and then the
surrounding spaces are built to be used by a variety of other ten-
ants. In this case our major tenant was the Bridges staff, and the rest
of the space (approx. 6000 square feet) was to be converted for other
The building was cleaned of old chemicals and debris, and then
stripped, leav-
The interior of the building was gutted anda ing only the
new air conditioning system was installed, exterior walls
and roof,
floor slab, and interior load-bearing walls. The old windows and fixtures
were replaced, the restrooms received a makeover, and all exits were checked
and brought up to code. The water and sewer systems were city water and
wastewater, but Beckenbach's team installed a brand-new A/C system, as
originally the building had no air conditioning.
"This is the first building on the eastside campus area to be connected
to a cen-
tral chiller
Temperature Going Up lat." ,

Ssa d 3000 square feet of raised flooring was
e have installed in order to house high speed
fiber optic cable, linking the Bridges staff
--, two 80-
ton units to the main campus.
-in there to
support Building 1603, and we have space to add more chillers
as more buildings come online over there."
Finally, paint, carpet and a drop ceiling were installed, along
with 3000 square feet of raised floor specially designed for the
Bridges staff. "The raised floor area houses high speed fiber
optic cable, in order to meet Bridges' electronic data transfer
needs," Beckenbach explained. "These cables were installed to
i meet the Office of Information Technology standards and will
link the Bridges staff to the main UF campus."
As the design drew to a close, it became apparent that the
original space estimates would have to change, and so the entire
building was redesigned for Bridges' exclusive use. The project
reached substantial completion in September 2005, and on Sept.
30, the Bridges staff was able to occupy the building for the first
-~5 -time.
Si d ~ L I Bridges Director Mike Corwin said, "PPD completed the
project right on time, and we're very pleased with our new build-
PPD's Paul Huntley uses a boom to lift a giant ing. It's a very open, efficient space, and it gives us the flexibility
UFCC thermometer sign into place at the our staff needs and allows us to organize our teams in a way that
corner of SW 13th Street and Union Road. facilitates communication and collaboration."

Editor: Jeremiah Aclnnis

U FLORIDA PPD, Fraternities Team Up To Plant Trees

Physical Plant Division
Personnel Services
PO Box 117700

Groundskeeping Supt. Marty Werts. "Over 30 trees were used,
Gainesville,including cypress trees, swamp dog32611-7700woods and pondpines."

Operations Engineering Provides Support To PPD, UF
by Joe Dyke, PPD Operations Engineering Coordinator
Give me your tired your poor/Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free/The wretched refuse of
your teeming shore/Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me/I lift my lamp beside the golden door!
These are the words inscribed on the tablet held by Lady Liberty at the Statue of Liberty. Though the Operations Engineering
Department at PPD does not have much in the way of huddled masses, we are made up of a group of individuals with diverse
backgrounds and skills. If someone were to ask, "What exactly does Operations Engineering do?" a fair response would be,
"Good question." However, more accurately, the response should probably be along the lines of, "Operations Engineering
provides the Physical Plant Division engineering and other support, required to help the University of Florida succeed in its role
of educating students."
The daily functions of Operations Engineering have recently shifted, to strengthen our ability to provide better support for
Physical Plant Division's operations. This shift allows the subject matter experts that make up Operations Engineering to apply
their knowledge to help maintain the University's infrastructure.The department currently consists of an electrical engineer
(energy conservation), a mechanical engineer, a civil engineer, an urban forester, an electrical technician, meter readers, under-
ground utility locators, and other support personnel. We have also recently added a roofing/building envelope inspector, and we
plan to add a meter coordinator in the near future. These two new positions will help bolster Operations Engineering's ability to
perform its support role. An explanation of some of this support follows:
Operations Engineering General Support Functions
1. Update UF Utility Policy.

2. Manage the System Department's contracts.
3. Schedule and track Operations Department plan reviews and construction project inspections.
4. Coordinate and conduct plan reviews on all projects to ensure compliance w ith UF construction standards and PPD
5. Perform in-progress inspections, SCIs, and FCIs.
6. Submit consolidated project review and inspection comments to Architecture & Engineering.
7. Generate periodic revisions to UF Construction Standards.
Provide updates to A&E to keep water/electrical/meters/potable water/sewer maps updated.
Attend design review, pre-bid, and pre-construction meetings.
The central function of the Operations Engineering Department is difficult to define; actually, it's probably better not to limit
between 34th Su andcthe Ha w Museum. "We wanted to plant

the department's role by ascribing a defined task set. However, though it might be difficult to assign a core function, the overall

purpose of the Operations Engineering Department is to support Physical Plant Division in its efforts o help the University of
Florida carry out it s mission of educating students. ert t th e of it oug e O tions eer
provides the Physical Plant Division engineering and other support, required to help the University of Florida succeed in its role
of educating students."

Florida carry out its mission of educating students.

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