Catapult Exterior (1)
Catapult Exterior (1)


Biller Reinhart Engineering Group, Inc. performed restoration design to stabilize the exterior east and west walls with an integrated bracing system through the existing steel truss girders.

Nearing completion of the project Hurricane Irma tracked just to the west of Downtown Lakeland, with reported wind speeds of 100 mph (Category 2 hurricane). The apparent damage left in the wake of the storm was the prominent lateral displacements and torsion of the 100-foot steel roof girder trusses. Even after planned structural modifications and improvements, the roof girder trusses were still necessary to support loading from the overlying timber roof system and clerestory assembly. The exhibited lateral displacement and twisting indicated structural capacity had been diminished.

The overstressing of the main steel roof girder trusses resulted in unpredictable structural performance. The altered conditions resulted in a dangerous condition and life safety concern and the building became economically prohibitive and, the decision to demolish was extremely difficult. “Plan B” for Catapult 3.0 was launched. A tilt-up panel construction concept incorporating the previously designed floor plans and the proposed new addition at the south elevation was selected as a viable cost-effective method. The 20’ x 20’ grid of the main building lent itself well to economy through repetition for floor and roof framing.

This building features a 9,000-square-foot maker space, 5,000-square-foot industrial kitchen, and 24,000-square-feet of coworking and private office space overlooking Lake Mirror. BillerReinhart is honored to have had the opportunity to be a part of this project’s challenging journey from inception to completion.