The combination of exploding technology and lean construction budgets is forcing architects and electrical engineers to address and hold down the cost of specification changes during construction. The new YMCA in Reading, PA wanted to keep up with member demand for recording exercise performance, specifying exercise machines that store workout data to help tailor individual routines.
This electronic technology requires electrical power. Not usually a big challenge, except:
• The concrete floor had already been poured, leaving no built-in way to connect power wiring to the machines. The cost to rip channels in the floor was prohibitive.
• The YMCA ceilings are more than 20 feet high, making poles for wiring impractical.
The architect, Justin Istenes of AEM Architects, Inc., contacted Legrand/Wiremold to see if there was a more attractive version of an industrial overfloor raceway he had seen.
The Wiremold OFR Series ™ Overfloor Raceway System enabled the contractors to add power connections even after concrete had been poured. Running from a Wiremold raceway on the wall, the overfloor extension reaches out four feet to the first station. The Overfloor Raceway feeds ten pairs of back-to-back machines at 8-foot intervals. While this raceway has been located between the machines where traffic is minimal, it is the lowest ADA-compliant product, essential if members decide to “cut through” between machines from one row to the other.
The system eliminates the need for power poles from the ceiling – in fact the electrical wiring from the wall runs shorter than the 20 feet from the ceiling. The system installed directly onto the rubber floor surface, providing unobtrusive design. The modular system allows flexibility and room for growth, should the YMCA want to modify the machine line-up or add AV or data cabling.
Brett Mayer, branch executive director noted, “The Wiremold products permitted us to install more ‘high tech’ equipment after construction was already complete, because of their ease and physical appearance.”