Push Push Push (Sounds like a Lamaze class…)

October 3, 2009

Hmm. The analogy might not be that far off (with apologies to the childbirth process). Regardless, in the middle of catering season we’re working hard to move into Front & Palmer. Herewith, a few pictures of what’s been going on.

Our freezer/refrigerator combo being installed.

Our freezer/refrigerator combo being installed.

After 20 years at the same building (!), a teensy-weensy bit of the stuff we've collected.

After 20 years at the same building (!), a teensy-weensy bit of the stuff we've collected.

Putting together the warehouse, bit by bit.

Putting together the warehouse, bit by bit.

Another new piece of refrigeration.

Another new piece of refrigeration.

As promised.

September 12, 2009

Here’s our solar array. The guy in the photo is Scottie, who beamed himself up.

Today’s other new post is just below.

A good view of the array, looking west.

A good view of the array, looking west.

Whoa, too much going on.

September 12, 2009

Final days. Big push. A slew of details are getting finished – plumbing fixtures, elevator, sprinklers, painting and more – to say nothing of our moving all our stuff. Off premise caterers are genus packratus, let me tell you.

Here are a bunch of pictures, with descriptions. Later today I’ll put up a photo or two of the solar array on the roof. For that we’ll also have a monitor in the lobby, showing how much energy we’re putting out (or, keeping in, as the case may be).

Hannah, helping The Dad stain new wood so it melds with old wood in the 2nd floor lobby.

Hannah, helping The Dad stain new wood so it melds with old wood in the 2nd floor lobby.

One of the 6 chandeliers in the loft, created by Warren Muller at bahdeebahdu.

One of the 6 chandeliers in the loft, created by Warren Muller at bahdeebahdu.

The 2nd floor lobby.

The 2nd floor lobby. Compare this with an earlier post's picture of Lynn walking the 2nd floor and you'll really see how much has been accomplished.

The view into the loft as you exit the elevator at the 2nd floor.

The view into the loft as you exit the elevator at the 2nd floor.

This is the 1st floor lobby; grout, paint and chandelier to come.

This is the 1st floor lobby; grout, paint and chandelier to come.

Floored

August 20, 2009

We are getting down to the wire, or at least the final stages. It’s not as if this is a race, but we do have to vacate 2nd Street and just get on with being in our new home.

The water department made the connection to their service. PECO and PGW are next. The exterior of the building is almost complete in how it’s being finished; all Javier has to do is paint some parts. Next up are various bits of finish work on the interior: the floors are being milled, filled and sealed in the kitchens (regular [?] and kosher), the loading area and the conference/tasting room. Upstairs, Sun has started sanding the wood floors in the offices. The floor in the loft comes up after that.

A big question for us (just came up today) is whether we should lightly stain the new flooring so it a) doesn’t stand out too much from the older wood and, more importantly b) has a richer color than its natural (very) blond tint. Of course it works perfectly well, we just want it to have a more rich appearance. I suspect some stain will find its way into the program.

Now that the water’s connected the plumbing fixtures will soon be installed. The ceiling grid’s are all in place for the areas that are getting drop ceilings (kitchen and offices).

The slate tile will be going down in the entry lobby and bathrooms within the next week or so. Lastly, we’ve started moving some of the mountain of junk, errrr, important stuff we’ve collected over the years.

Here are a couple of pictures to help you see what’s up. The first is of the kitchen, where the concrete floor is being milled, lightly polished and then sealed.

The concrete floor gets sanded, polished and then sealed.

Sanding the wood floors in the offices. Polyurethane to follow.
Sanding the wood floors in the offices. Polyurethane to follow.

Update

July 30, 2009
Look what we found when the stucco came off the Front Street side of the building!

Look what we found when the stucco came off the Front Street side of the building!

Progress continues apace, with nothing huge to report other than the fact that the place sure looks different than it did only two weeks ago. The hoods are in place in both the main and kosher meat kitchens, 99% of the drywall is finished, doors are being hung and some final surface treatments are actually being applied. We have a good ways to go, but Front & Palmer is really taking shape.

The ceiling grid in our offices goes in.

The ceiling grid in our offices goes in.

We would have liked to keep the ceilings in the office open to the iron beams and flooring above us, but it would have meant not only heating and cooling more cubic footage (= more $), but also more expensive light fixtures and more expensive hvac ductwork. It’s a little sad, but way short of terrible.

A view of some of the kitchen, with the exhaust hood in the background.

A view of some of the kitchen, with the exhaust hood in the background.

Hmmmm, probably need a wide angle lens to show the whole kitchen, but you can see where the stoves will go. The open space will be filled with chefs’ work tables.

This and That

July 9, 2009

One of the pleasures of moving to a new part of town is learning new streets, developing new routes to your new home or place of work. After growing up in South Jersey and having Philadelphia as “the city”, and after living here for over 30 years, it’s kind of neat that there are so many streets I’ve never been down, parts of town I’ve yet to discover.

And so it is with the move to Front & Palmer. Who knew Cecil B. Moore Avenue was such an East/West conduit? (Clearly, I did not attend Temple.) Our friend Clio G, who’s living near that street, simply refers to it as Cecil. “Yeah, my apartment’s just off Cecil…”

There are a bunch more streets and neighborhoods we’re getting to know as a result of the upcoming change in our address, and it’s all interesting.

Here’s what’s happening lately, as sheetrock is being put up and the walls are becoming solid and real, morphing from suggestions of rooms and spaces into clearly divided areas of future activity:

The front door's in place. There will be glass block filling the space to the left of the door.

The front door's in place. There will be glass block filling the space to the left of the door.

These boards are from the floor we had to pull up on the 2nd floor. They've been ripped to a 7" width, and we're using them to frame the glass block at the entry door. You can see them in the previous photo.

These boards are from the floor we had to pull up on the 2nd floor. They've been ripped to a 7" width, and we're using them to frame the glass block at the entry door. You can see them in the previous photo.

It looks like enough joint compound for any 5 buildings, but it's not. It's all for us.

It looks like enough joint compound for any 5 buildings, but it's not. It's all for us.

Drywall cannot hide everything. Here, this bolt couldn't be covered so we had to work around it.

Drywall cannot hide everything. This bolt couldn't be covered so we had to work around it.

This is the bottom of the smokestack. We have to do something to control the water that comes inside it when it rains, so we're pouring a concrete base and direct the water via a pipe to the drains.

This is the bottom of the smokestack. We have to do something to control the water that comes inside it when it rains, so we're pouring a concrete base and direct the water via a pipe to the drains.

This way lies kosher (kitchens)....

This way lies kosher (kitchens)....

You don’t miss the water ’till the well runs dry.

June 18, 2009

There’s no overarching theme to the photos that are below. They document progress, and I’ve noted what they’re showing you; the general idea is that big stuff is now happening and the building is really taking shape.

It still needs some imagination, and Lynn keeps telling me I can see what it will look like better than many. In a lot of ways off-premise catering is similar to renovating a building – you have to be able to see the possibilities inherent in open spaces – so that probably works to our advantage.

The title of this post does have a meaning, however. We’re installing virtually all the plumbing, gas and electric services. Before we were there the buildings were warehouse-type structures that housed a pickle maker in one building, and a barrel-maker in the other. From what I’ve heard they hated each other. Regardless, don’t ever take the utilities in your house or place of business for granted. When you have to build them all in from scratch you really appreciate how much you depend on them.

A lotta lotta drywall. Not all that we'll need. Not even all we need for just the loft.

A lotta lotta drywall. Not all that we'll need. Not even all we need for just the loft.

The elevator shaft at the first floor. We're using a LULA elevator (Limited Use Limited Access), which is designed for our type of installation: no need for the elevator to travel 20 stories. Three will do just fine, thank you very much

The elevator shaft at the first floor. We're using a LULA elevator (Limited Use Limited Access), which is designed for our type of installation: no need for the elevator to travel 20 stories. Three will do just fine, thank you very much

The 2nd floor lobby. You come up via the shorter set of stairs. The other set leads to the third floor, which we won't be using right away.

The 2nd floor lobby. You come up via the shorter set of stairs. The other set leads to the third floor, which we won't be using right away.

This is the front wall in the loft, with drywall being hung. We're using doubled 5/8th sheets, with Green Glue between them for sound attentuation.

This is the front wall in the loft, with drywall being hung. We're using doubled 5/8th sheets, with Green Glue between them for sound attentuation.

Drop in a comment or two and let us know what you think.

One Window Closes And Another One Opens

May 11, 2009
Closed-in windows, with framing waiting for drywall.

Closed-in windows, with framing waiting for drywall.

As you can see, we’ve closed up the windows on Front Street. Below are scenes of the entryway, where you’ll step down before walking into the building from the parking lot, and a photo of the 2nd floor offices and bathroom areas as they’re being framed out.

DSC_8043

Wood v metal framing? It's been a toss-up.

Wood v metal framing? It's been a toss-up.

The decision wasn’t mine. We left it up to Joe, our general contractor. Wood’s been cheaper until lately, when the price differential in the materials has become less of an issue. On the other hand, metal’s faster to install (and better for sound insulation, too). It’s always something…..

Break on through to the other side.

April 3, 2009

The opening that will let you walk from our entry lobby to the steps leading upstairs has been cut in the brick wall. and the 2nd entry door into the Atrium has been opened up, too, now that there is some flooring on both sides. Take a look:

 

When this kind of work gets done, things start to look like it's really going to be a welcoming place.

When this kind of work gets done, it starts to become real.

Here’s the doorway on the 2nd floor:

 

Hey, nice lintel.

Hey, nice lintel.

P.S. Apologies for the title today. I’m no big Doors fan, and definitely not a Classic Rock guy, but it seemed so appropriate.

Yes!

April 2, 2009

img_0089

A bad photo from a phone’s camera, but exciting news: the floor’s being installed in the atrium.