Sustainable Construction is Key

submitted by Arthur Funk & Sons, Inc.

Recycling has become second nature to every household, in the construction industry the recycling is called adaptive reuse or repositioning. Adaptive reuse means giving an old building new purpose. For the team at Arthur Funk and Sons, Inc., Construction Services, giving old buildings at retirement communities, medical facilities and communities of faith has become second nature.

“By reusing buildings, the project is much more environmentally sustainable than new construction,” said Bob Funk, PE, LEED AP, president of Arthur Funk and Sons. “The adaption of a building also presents some unique challenges, especially if the building is currently in use.”

For Funk Construction, when renovating an existing building, working around building occupants is a challenging part of the construction process. Their experience, however, gives them the ability to be flexible to the owner’s schedule, while still being mindful of the project schedule. The adaptive reuse of the Lebanon HACC campus was a case in point.

“The Lobby was renovated to create offices for the administration and bookstore. The multipurpose room was renovated for a new Bookstore and updated for audio and visual purposes,” said Funk. “We added a second floor area within the confines of the building to create a new student life center and café. We accomplished this with classes in session.”

The key to overcoming the challenge was flexibility, a characteristic not lost on appreciative clients.

“The team at Arthur Funk was very accommodating,” said Denis Deslongchamp, HACC-Lebanon Facility Manager. “If the noise interrupted a class, they would stop working and come back later, sometimes at night, to get the job done.”

The thought is echoed at Philhaven in Lebanon, where a floor was adapted into 12 pods for patients.

“Everyone at Philhaven Hospital is ecstatic about the remodeled area. The good management of the project made my job easier,” said James Ipsen, Director of Facilities at Phil Haven.

Arthur Funk has undertaken many adaptive reuse projects including the Lebanon Veteran’s Administration Hospital CPAC renovation, a 75,000 sq. ft., adaptation of patient rooms to office space, the LutherCare adaptation of patient rooms to efficiency apartments and a project at the Lebanon Valley Brethren Home.

“A the Lebanon Valley Brethren Home, a 100 bed skilled care facility was adapted it into 22 independent living garden apartments,” said Funk. “In the City of Lebanon, we took the old Boyer Printing Building including the warehouse space and adapted it into Albright LIFE (Living Independently for Elders) to help seniors live safely in the place they call home.”

In adapting old buildings into new uses for medical and life care facilities, the team at Arthur Funk understands the hurdles of the government regulation process.

“We have the knowledge, the experience and the network of experts to make sure a project passes all requirements,” added Funk. “We work with the client to make sure long range planning is incorporated into the design up front and that site considerations are in effect. Another big consideration is Infection Control Risk Management requirements when working in medical facilities.”

The trend in the construction industry is to help the environment and to to “Go Green.” Adaptive reuse and repositioning achieve this goal. At the Woodside Apartments at Cornwall Manor, Arthur Funk and Sons collaborated with the architects and engineering firms to create an eco-friendly construction process. The company reviewed and evaluated the various green technologies and construction methods during the design phase. This process is essential to maintain “a green construction project.” Completion is expected in 2013.

Funk practices green technology in their own business. Arthur Funk and Sons went online with solar panels and generates 50 KW, more than enough electricity to be used by the company. In addition, the company participated in an Earth Day Clean Up of the City of Lebanon sponsored by ZINN Insurance, and in the Green Expo sponsored by the Lebanon Valley Chamber of Commerce.

“In keeping with no waste for the environment, at the Green Expo we were paperless, utilizing QR codes on our display that sent visitors and their smart phones to our landing page,” said Funk. “There was no need to carry brochures or sheets from our booth, it went into your phone.”

Arthur Funk and Sons continues to collaborate with industry professionals from banking and fundraising to architects and contractors to present seminars targeted towards pastors, laypersons, and building committees offering a primer on where to start a building project.

“Our team is noted for our church construction. As we met with churches, we discovered a common element: Church teams share the same thoughts prior to beginning any construction project: “We have outgrown our building, now what?”; “Do we have enough land to build?”; or, “Is this the right time to proceed?” said Funk. “Not only have these seminars joined together the professionals to outline the nuts and bolts a church needs to get started, but they have become an excellent marketing tool. Many additional seminars are planned in the new year.”

The Arthur Funk heritage has passed through three generations of family. Founded by Arthur Funk, continued by his son Henry Funk, the firm is today spearheaded by grandson Bob Funk and his brothers, Ken and Dave Funk, and brother-in-law Dale Reppert. Other team members are: Scott Yiengst, Project Manager; Jessica Kosoff, Project Engineer; and Steve Reed, Harry Cain, and Nathan Fry, project estimators. The team includes many craftsmen, comprised of some long-term members as well as what Funk refers to as “the next generation” all of whom are knowledgeable of their craft.

“We Build,” is a key component to Arthur Funk and Sons, Inc., and is the business philosophy based on building partnerships with clients that build and strengthen communities. For more information, call 717-273-4122, stop by the offices at 1405 Birch Road, Lebanon, or visit the website at