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Project Focus: Drywall

Project: UNC Rex Heart and Vascular

As part of its annual awards program, the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry recognizes the team efforts of its member contractors, manufacturers and suppliers who work on quality construction projects. For the 2017 program, AWCI’s Excellence in Construction Quality Award was upgraded to focus on the excellent work done by AWCI members in specific categories: ceilings, drywall, EIFS, plaster, small projects, steel framing and stucco.


The award winners will be announced March 29 during AWCI’s Convention in Las Vegas, but we will feature some of the nominations throughout the year on the pages of this magazine. This month we highlight the drywall work done by Precision Walls, Inc. of Cary, N.C., on Rex Heart and Vascular in Raleigh, N.C.

AWCI’s nomination form asks how materials were used creatively on the job and other difficulties faced during construction. For this healthcare project, the nomination form points out that although this hospital is a new building, it was connected to an existing hospital, which had to be kept operational throughout the duration of the project. The hospital is a 10-story bed tower with an adjacent 4-story diagnostic and treatment building connected to the northwest quadrant of the existing hospital. PWI crews had to “continually put up multiple temporary walls to block off construction throughout the job.”


Sequencing was another challenge. Underground rock caused the tower to be built before the podium, and this “caused many sequence variations working around different access points.” Still, PWI maintained the schedule and flow.


Throughout the new building there are copious amounts of radius walls, soffits and intricate details. Ellipse recessed drywall ceilings were placed in every nursing station and meditation room. Every patient room is beautifully detailed with a radius drywall ceiling feature, angled walls and reveals underneath every window.


The two-story lobby offers an inviting atmosphere, radius elements and an elegant two-story stone accent wall. Radius walls are featured throughout the hospital, which allowed Precision Walls to provide a strong anchor for various intricate stone work that was later placed by another trade.


Precision Walls is known for being the partner that helps drive the job, and this project was no exception. There were multiple trades in various sequences on the job at one time—all 10 floors were worked on simultaneously, meaning that quite a bit of manpower and multiple types of equipment and tools were on all levels at all times. PWI played an essential role in closely coordinating schedules and sequences. With a full time PWI quality control engineer and safety inspector on site, it allowed our team to ensure the safety of workers and pedestrians, the quality of the finished project and helped drive other subs to stay on schedule.  


Another bonus to working on this project? It was completely paperless. PlanGrid, BIM360 and CAD were used throughout the project to maintain layout accuracy, production tracking and much more.

AWCI Member Manufacturers

  • MarinoWARE
  • National Gypsum

AWCI Member Suppliers

  • Circle Supply of Charlotte
  • Colonial Materials, Inc. (A GMS Company)
  • Delta Gypsum, Inc. (AD Building Materials)
  • Hilti, Inc.


WHR Architects

General Contractor


Facility Details

  • The design of this hospital was based around the idea of the four chambers of the heart. It represents four central themes (1) High-Tech, (2) Natural, (3) Inviting and (4) Clean.
  • The architect, WHR Architects, was able to create a natural, yet modern design that fit perfectly with this theme for the Rex Hospital group.
  • The hospital consists of 114 licensed beds, a 20-bed cardiovascular intensive care unit and 22 acuity-adaptable beds. Diagnosis and treatment procedure spaces include six cath labs, two electrophysiology labs, two interventional radiology labs, two hybrid ORs, a 10-bed PACU, a 47-bed prep recovery unit and all the supporting office and staff rooms.

Drywall Contractor Man-Hours

182,000 (565 weekdays)

Project Floor Area

306,402 sq. ft.

Contractor’s Scope of Work

  • Drywall
  • Exterior and interior framing
  • Knightwall exterior continuous insulation system
  • Lead board
  • Insulation
  • EIFS
  • Modernfold folding partitions
  • Laundry chute
  • Aluminum canopies
  • Air barrier
  • Firestopping

Drywall Materials Used

  • 1,600,000 sq. ft. wallboard
  • 110,000 sq. ft. sheathing
  • 60,000 sq. ft. shaftwall
  • 55,000 sq. ft. tile back
  • 8,000 buckets of joint compound
  • 60,000 sq. ft. trim
  • 4,800 sq. ft. milled drywall
  • 2,170 lft. reveals
  • 1,933,262 fasteners/screws
  • 3,772 firestop

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