Keeping the Terminal Dry – F.W. Sims Completes Central Terminal Building Replacement at The Laguardia Airport in NY

F.W. Sims, a subsidiary of Electra USA, completed a project working on a central terminal building replacement at the Laguardia Airport in Queens, New York. The goal of this project was to complete renovating the airport, including a unified terminal system, more spacious gate areas, state-of-the-art architecture and modern amenities to deliver a 21st century experience for passengers. In addition, they designed, fabricated and installed an HDPE underground piping system connecting a newly-built central heating and refrigeration plant (CHRP) to a new cooling tower. The scope of the project is two 500-foot runs of 24-inch-high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe to condense water supply and return and is 6-15 feet deep.

There were several challenging aspects to the project. These included connecting the pipe by fusion welding and by flange connections and handling and installation of large sections of heavy piping, which posed challenges for field labor and other trades in collaborating on the project. F.W. had to undergo extensive planning for determining the location of each type of connection in the system; all fusion welding was carried out above grade and lowered into the trench to connect it with the previous section by a flange-to-flange connection.

The project deployed McElroy MEGAMC 1236/900 fusion machine for fusing two sections of HDPE pipe by heat fusion, preparing and heating to a designated temperature of the two surfaces and fusing them together by applying for to each side and heating of the polyethylene pipe, which changes the molecular structure from a crystalline to an amorphous state. Additionally, fusion pressure was applied to mix the molecules from each side; once the joint cools, the molecules return to their crystalline state and the two sections of pipe become one homogeneous section.

Given that all renovation work was carried out while the terminals remained open, the project was designed to enable rapid installation and recovery to ensure that passengers and the general public were not impacted by the construction. Historically, between tide and storm surges in the adjacent Flushing Bay, sections of the airport were flooded, Many sections of the current renovation have been designed to withstand flood conditions, including implementation of a new “dry floodproofing” program featuring new stormwater pumps, flood proof walls, flood doors and deployable flood shields.

About The Electra Group

The Electra Group was founded in 1945. It is traded on the TASE and included in the TA-35 Index, and specializes in four core fields: construction, infrastructure, and electromechanical contracting; operation & maintenance of industrial, infrastructural, commercial, and real estate projects and facilities; initiation & development of real estate projects; concessions relating to infrastructure & national projects. Turnover: Approx. US$3 billion. Backlog: Approx. US$8 billion. Employees: Approx. 14,000.

Electra’s constant growth and diversification are driven by its dedicated lifecycle approach – a unique business model that encompasses every stage of the construction and development process. The Group currently operates in 4 continents and 17 countries, and has recently taken several major strategic steps into new fields and territories. Electra’s new subsidiary Electra USA has acquired three well-established New York companies, positioning the Electra Group at the forefront of a major electromechanical contracting market with projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars. In addition, Electra has entered the world of transportation by acquiring control of three prominent companies – Afikim, Amnon Mesilot, and Egged-Taavura – and uniting them under the new Electra Afikim brand, which will operate public, private, and institutional transport services throughout Israel.

Electra manages thousands of large-scale turnkey construction and infrastructure projects from concept to completion, including electromechanical system installation, as well as long-term management and operational services. By harnessing the strategic synergy between its comprehensive, complementary areas of activity, the Group is able to deliver an optimal service portfolio customized to each customer’s precise needs, with complete quality control, budgetary, and scheduling oversight.

As traditional construction enters a groundbreaking new era, Electra reliably rises to the challenge and thrives in competitive markets thanks to its unique activity matrix, alongside the Group’s firm commitment to continual reinvention. Building on extensive M&A experience, coupled with a creative, outside-the-box perspective, Electra pushes the boundaries of innovation by investing in promising new sectors, such as smart technology. This bold approach has defined Electra’s industry-leading position for over 75 years.