New hire

"Turning Off Mute:" Conversations with New Hires During the Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic launched the world into an all-virtual format, and with that came a flurry of Teams meetings, Zoom happy hours, and reminding people they are on mute. While most people had a somewhat seamless transition – doing their best to carry out their work relationships and projects from home – a whole new generation of employees entered the workforce in less-than-ideal conditions. The Class of 2020 -began their careers in a year so tumultuous it’s still hard to fathom. They were… Read More
Data Center

The Rise of Commissioning Project Management for Mission Critical Facilities

The pace of design and construction for mission critical facilities has accelerated exponentially in recent years. The speed required to bring these facilities to market is critical for clients, and construction teams are under increasingly more pressure to deliver. Clients expect reliable, redundant and efficient facilities from the design and construction firms executing these complicated and rigorous projects. In order to deliver these large-scale projects with confidence, many construction… Read More
631 N. Broad

Re-Structure-ing History

The City of Philadelphia is rich with historical buildings.  From old banks to meeting houses to residential buildings that date back to the beginning of our country, it is hard to find a street in the City of Brotherly Love without a historic landmark or building.   This is one reason why Bala is no stranger to working on historic buildings.  Instead of starting from scratch, developers are inspired to work within the confines of these old buildings to breathe new life into structures rich… Read More
Los Mochis

Luckey Climbers

About 10 years ago, Bala took on a unique project with Spencer Luckey, an architect and artist who leads the custom design-build firm Luckey, LLC. In 1985, Spencer began creating children’s climbing structures that are part artistic sculpture, part jungle gym. He has constructed over 80 unique structures worldwide, including some in Mexico, China and Russia, among others.  These play structures are not traditional playground configurations. They are works of art and public space sculptures… Read More
Doors

A Tale of Three Doors - Technology as an Amenity for the Multi-Family Development

Design of a multi-family residential building is fundamentally about addressing the experience of traversing three doors: Front door, elevator door and residence door. Each of these doors heralds an incremental change between public and private; limited control to private sanctuary. As we move through each, the security profile, privacy expectations, sense of control and community change dramatically until we are finally in our residence…at home. Nowhere else is technology’s multifaceted… Read More
Wakefield

Massachusetts School Districts

Bala Consulting Engineers is currently assisting the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) by performing HVAC system evaluations for more than 10 school districts encompassing over 60 schools. Since studies have shown that COVID-19 spreads primarily through droplets in the air, schools (as well as businesses of all kinds) are eager to understand the systems within their buildings and strategies to improve indoor air quality for their occupants.… Read More
Mill 19

Adaptive Reuse | Mill 19

Bala has made it a priority to support the architectural team in achieving this mix of the past and present. So far with the first two buildings, Bala has worked through several design challenges while creating an interactive space for the tenants and pedestrians alike. At the East end of the mill lies Building A, a 96,000 sq. ft three story laboratory and office space developed in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University.  This building contains a two story open high bay space for… Read More
lab

Converting Office Space to Lab Space

Many developers are considering converting underutilized commercial office space into laboratories, especially since the Life Science industry has proven capable of withstanding the COVID-19 pandemic. The industry has been booming for some time now, and COVID-19 has prompted it to flourish in unprecedented ways. Large universities and healthcare institutions have a heightened demand for Life Science facilities to be located on or near their campuses, and developers are eager to deliver. Between… Read More
butterfly

The Butterfly Effect in a Data Center

The Butterfly Effect refers to the phenomenon where a small localized change in a complex system can have very large effects elsewhere. Nowhere is this more evident than in operating a data center; the steady hum of commerce can cascade into a cacophony of panic within moments. But first, let’s take a step back and see how it happens, and more importantly, how to help prevent it. The lights are extinguished in a remote, undisclosed, unmarked, fenced-in, security patrolled, grey building… Read More
classroom

COVID-19 Impacts to K-12 Schools

This report is a continuation of our research on COVID-19 and how it impacts facilities across all market sectors.  This paper focuses on strategies and recommendations for K-12 educational facilities, as well as some general information on the COVID-19 virus and building systems recommendations that are applicable for many types of facilities. Executive Summary Schools in the K-12 market face unique challenges in preparing their facilities for the return of students, teachers and staff. … Read More