Sherlock Elementary School

Cicero, IL Education

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In school construction, creating spaces that can serve multiple functions saves in longer term building expense even though upfront design and collaboration may take more time and resources. First and foremost, before functioning as a school gymnasium, Sherlock Elementary in Cicero, IL, needed it to function as a storm shelter. They also needed to secure a partner that could satisfy a rapid construction schedule. Enter Spancrete and precast as the building solution.

Recent code requirements in the state of Illinois have enhanced the overall design and construction safety standards. Code ICC 500 requires all education facilities to have at least one room in the building designated to protect occupants of the school and/or community in the instance of unprecedented weather conditions.

Double Tees along the roof allow for the wide-open space needed for a gymnasium and the secure roof structured needed in a storm shelter requirement, while wall panels and hollowcore bring additional structural integrity and added safety. Combined, these elements form a safe and secure boxed shape structure that resists high winds up to 250 mph, endures a fire rating of up to 4 hours, provides windowless panels for enhanced security, and most importantly - withstands unprecedented environmental conditions, meeting the code requirements.

From the beginning, this project was under tight schedule requirements, paired with tight site restrictions. Requiring a precast delivery and installation window of just two days, just shy of 20,000 square feet of precast building solution were needed to adhere to project deadlines. With the proper communication and coordination, our team executed seamlessly. Product was delivered as-needed, minimizing the need for onsite storage – which was in short supply in the dense Chicago suburb.

The final result is a new elementary school delivered on-time and on-budget, but most importantly, a structure that is built to stand the test of time and will protect the lives of our future generations.


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