Published Jul 13, 2023
In Commercial Construction


Crawler crane on Panama City jobsite

With the population booming in northwest Florida, a new medical campus is coming to Panama City Beach. First to be constructed is a four-story, 80,000-square-foot office building that will include medical practices, outpatient care, and operating rooms.

The mostly concrete structure was built with the help of a single Manitowoc 14000 lattice boom crawler that proved to be a bit of a Swiss Army knife-like player on a complex jobsite. The crane was provided by ALL Crane Rental of Alabama, a member of the ALL Family of Companies.

While a larger, 440-ton capacity crane set tilt wall panels for the main building, the 220-ton capacity Manitowoc did just about everything else. ALL’s Manitowoc 14000 was configured with 100 feet of main boom and 150 feet of luffing jib, allowing it to remain a nimble workhorse at the site.

“We assisted while they performed the tilt wall panel tie-ins and later ran a concrete bucket over the entire building once the concrete box was constructed,” said Scott Swearengin, sales representative with ALL Crane Rental of Alabama. “The 14000 also handled soffits and joists, rebar, as well as dropping loads of timber inside for the framers. The rest was support work to make sure the tilt walls were all tied together.”

The last part of the office building, a shipping and receiving area, presented the greatest challenge – a challenge with a novel solution that allowed the Manitowoc 14000 to shine once again.

“Looking at panel weights up to 90,000 pounds, Robins & Morton [the general contractor] looked at their delivery schedule versus our load charts for picking off the main boom,” said Swearengin. “What they were trying to determine was if they could use the 14000 crawler crane in its current configuration, without taking the luffer off or without having to bring in a second crane to perform the work.”

“What we had to look at was the main boom, with capacity deductions for the luffer hanging off the end of it at a certain degree and angle, to see if it could pick those weights,” said Swearengin.

Indeed, it could be done with just a simple adjustment to the tilt wall delivery schedule. “There were two panels that got close to capacity,” said Swearengin. “But it became an easy solution of just moving those two panels to a part of the construction closer to the crane.” The change didn’t significantly affect the design of the building and, by working within a shorter radius, the two problematic panels were now well within capacity.

According to Swearengin, it proved to be the ultimate win-win solution. “It extended the rental of the 14000 by another month, and also saved the customer time and money because they didn’t need to bring in another crane.”

The Manitowoc 14000 was on the site from late January to early June. Next up for the new medical campus is construction of the main hospital building, slated for completion in 2027.