Harper was selected to partner with Clemson University as the chosen Design-Build Contractor for the new Duke Energy-SCRA Innovation Center. Harper’s responsibilities involved both preconstruction and construction services including all design, materials and systems analysis, site review, and site preparation for the new 40,000 SF facility. 

Harper’s Design-Build team involvement with the Duke Energy-SCRA Innovation Center project began shortly after initial conceptual design and programming was completed by another design firm. Upon examination and a market-verified budget, it was determined that for Clemson to move forward with the project, the budget would need to be reduced by 39%. 

To produce a project satisfactory to the University, Harper then leveraged a systematic and collaborative preconstruction approach with the Clemson project management team and Harper’s design partners. The preconstruction effort involved a redesign of the structure while maintaining programming, maximizing the aesthetic appeal, and ensuring materials, systems, and site efficiencies to arrive at the desired budget. 

At completion, the innovative two-floor, 40,000 SF structure encompassed 21 research lab suites and 9,000 SF of Class-A office space.  Additionally, the project was completed on time and under budget.

Specific preconstruction actions:

  • Performed exercises to promote higher value means, methods, and materials with minimal impact to overall design intent.
  • Performed multiple iterative designs and budgets for the University. 
  • Created efficiencies in the final design through mechanical, electrical, and plumbing system and material sharing options for Clemson and SCRA.
  • Examined multiple site options to provide most cost-effective solution and minimize site expenses.
  • Explored multiple exterior cladding options to arrive at a cost effective but aesthetically appealing option.