Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Front Doors

The glass for the front doors has finally arrived! Check out the 15 foot high panes along the side of the doors. Fortunately, they're tempered safety glass so we shouldn't have people walking through it, but just in case, we'll probably put stickers or something on the glass at eye level.

The glass for all the interior spaces is also on site. They'll be going into all the private offices and in the conference room which has 3 walls with floor to ceiling glass. Talk about a fish bowl!

Also, the HVAC was turned on yesterday. They're testing and balancing the air flow, but it was great feeling the air conditioning come on for the first time ever. Woo hoo!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Teal, huh?

As we get closer to our (new) move in date, they're putting finishing touches on the space including the accent colors on the structural elements of the building. The designer decided that teal would be a good contrast to the main wall color. It certainly catches your attention!

All the exposed beams that hold the building up, and new steel bracing that keeps it from falling down will have this treatment. It's kind of an interesting blending of the old and the new.

The furniture installers are working hard to get all the cubicles put together and are having a fun time trying to match all the pieces to each other! We expect them to be done by tomorrow.

Finally, we've chosen our lighting fixtures for the raised roof area and entrance lobby. They look like this, but will not actually be installed for another couple of months because they're backlogged.
In the meantime, it's actually surprisingly bright under the monitor and all of the workstations have their own task lighting.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

New Reception Area

Have you been to our waiting room lately? Did it make you want to run screaming from the building? Did you think the chairs and carpet look like somebody died on them? OK, well it's not so bad, but it's certainly not pretty. (see Aug 18 post)

In our new building, our reception area is about FOUR TIMES bigger. It has natural light from a window looking out onto the skyscrapers of downtown Seattle, a reception desk that will have safety glass for security and a lower counter for ADA accessibility.

We've also got a place for a flat screen TV that we will be running videos on for people to watch (and learn) while waiting. Videos on Chinese American history, culture, and travelogues are what we're starting out with. No, sorry, no Sponge Bob!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Furniture Installation

Elevator still not working, but we're going ahead with plans to move and install all the furniture we purchased months ago and have been storing downstairs.

So how do we move it? With a forklift, and VERY gently, of course! They've already finished all the framing for the relites on the 2nd floor, but left this one section open for the forklift. Fortunately, the glass is not in yet, but as far as we know, they didn't even bump the frame once!

The carpet is all done, and here you can see one of the managers' desks in their office. They are so long (96 inches!) that in order to get them onto the forklift, they had to first attach 2 ten foot long pieces of wood so the desks wouldn't fall off the front!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Movable Stairs - Just Like in Harry Potter!

You know those temporary stairs that used to be against the wall? They moved them to the center of the lobby in preparation for installation of the real stairs.

Then one day last week, they ended up sideways in the lobby for some reason.

And now they're back against the wall today as they bring in the steel for the final set of stairs! These new stairs will have oak treads with clear plexiglass risers and teal steel railings.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Hurry Up and Stop!

Bad news. We've just learned that we will not be able to move in to the building until at least Nov 10. This kind of throws a wrench into our plans to move on Oct 27...

We are told that the final inspection of the building cannot happen sooner than 10 days after all the other inspections have been done and signed off on. The plan was to have all these inspections done by the 27th. Normally, we could have gotten a final inspection that same day, or the next, but the city's building department is really backed up and needs 2 weeks time.

Anyway, the new plan is for us to close from Thursday, Nov 16 through Monday, Nov 20, and reopen for business on the 21st, just before Thanksgiving. It can't be helped, but we're trying to keep a positive attitude and stay flexible.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Getting There

The building is looking and feeling more and more like finished office space every day. We've got ceiling tiles (some), we've got lighted soffits (that's that hanging down part over the elevator), we've even got a motion sensing light switch (we think that's what it is)!

The elevator's still not working, but the jack is on its way. In case you missed it, we had to replace the hydraullic jack in the elevator. As they were removing the old one last week, they discovered that there was an additional 20 odd feet of cyllindar (probably in case the owner wanted a taller elevator in the future).

But things are progressing and we're on schedule to move in the last weekend of October. Oh, my gosh! That's next week!!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Wide Load

HVAC units are on site and being installed on the roof. Our air conditioning is finally here!

They weigh a ton, and we have to be really careful not to rip the new roof material. So cranes are being used to hoist the units up to the top of the building. Thankfully all the ductwork and other preparation inside is already complete.

So all they have to do is get the units in place, bolt them down and connect. We're ready to go!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Armin's Cubby

Just thought we'd share this with you. In moving the switches for the lobby lighting, a new partial wall was built.

This created a small cubby under the stairs that we decided to name after construction supervisor Armin Bunkleman. Here he is.

Can you say "change order"?

Hmm... 2-1/2 weeks before we move in, we decide to make a major change in the floor plan. Originally, the main entry stairs leading from the ground floor lobby to our 2nd floor reception area was to be a wide, welcoming and inviting structure that would leave the way to the elevator (towards the back of the building) with a clear and open path.

But as we proceeded with the work, we found that the space was 5 inches narrower than originally planned, a support column in the middle of the stairs could not be removed for structural reasons, and perhaps most importantly, a large cross beam at the bottom of the stairway also had to stay.

This made for a sense of having to duck under a large object before proceeding up the narrower stairs. After the temporary stairs were moved to the center of the lobby space, we realized that it really made more sense to keep the stairway in the new location.

It's directly under two skylights, feels more natural, and because the stairs were designed to give a sense of floating and airiness, doesn't visually block the path to the elevator as much as you would expect.

So expect to see our newly configured grand staircase in this space in just a few short weeks!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Moving Right Along

Work continues as we get closer and closer to our move in date. Carpet arrived last Friday and is being installed now. Taping and painting of the interior of the monitor is now complete.

Doors and relites (those are those interior windows in the individual offices) are being constructed on site and installed. Here you can see a sample of the wood being used for the frames . The project architect was very particular about the type of wood to be used to convey a "warm Northwest flavor." White oak? Red hemlock? Only our architect knows for sure.


Mid-Autumn Moon Festival was last Friday. Seniors at Sunshine Garden Senior Day Center had a party celebrating the holiday with many yummy treats - and a work party.

Here are some of the seniors helping with the CISC newsletter. In order to keep our costs down, we use Kinko's for copying, and rely on volunteer help to fold, stuff and seal the newsletters when they come out every quarter.

Staff work hard to bring you the lastest news and happenings at CISC. We also try to share some of the stories that help keep our staff and volunteers so dedicated to the work. Support from the community has such an incredible impact on the lives of those we serve. We really couldn't do it without you!

Thursday, October 05, 2006


That's what we are. Now that all the bracing is all done, we have nothing to fear in the event of an earthquake - or an eruption of Mount Rainier.

Check out all the bolts that anchor the top of the brace through the 8 8 inch thick beam.

And then my favorite is the giant wrench this guy's using to tighten the bolts.

Even the two entrances on the Maynard Avenue side of the building got extra support above their doorways. Good news for our new downstairs neighbors!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


What a roller coaster ride it's been! First we thought the elevator work would be done on time. Then we found out the parts had not yet been ordered. Then we got it so the parts would arrive on site in time, but the work on the hydraulic cylinder would delay the completion.

Without the elevator up and running, we can't move the furniture upstairs. And without furniture, we can't move in and be open for business Nov 1. Then the issue of a new controller emerged last week (just 4 weeks before our move in date!!).

After many e-mails and phone calls back an forth, we found out that we will be able to complete all the elevator work in time and that we won't have to change out the controller before we move in. Yeah!

Here is a picture of the elevator between floors. Hopefully, something we will not see often after it is all fixed!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


What a luxury! Staff restrooms in designer colors!

Yes, staff will have their very own restrooms near the break room (also an added feature of this space).

Public restrooms will be near the waiting area and, thanks to building owner Sophia Ho, have stone tile floors and cool northwest colors on the walls, partitions and ceiling.

Almost makes you want to go!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Steel Moment Frames

Part of the rennovation of the building required extra support for the building through the addition of steel bracing. There are 2 sets of these huge steel bars running up from the ground through the 1st and 2nd floors up to the ceiling.

They will be bolted onto these huge metal plates at the ceiling and floor. Although the building held up well in the 2001 Nisqually earthquake, we want to be sure our clients and staff are safe for the next 60 years!