Normal left montage imageNormal middle montage imageNormal right montage image




Facing Wood-Frame Construction Fires

The recent spike in the number of wood-frame construction fires has caught much attention around the country—including outside of our industry. This year alone there have been more than seven major multifamily, wood-frame construction fires. While the cause of many of these fires is still under investigation, at least three are believed to be attributed to arson, one to improper installation of materials, and one to unsafe operation of equipment.

According to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA), the number of total apartment fires, under construction or completed, has decreased by roughly 34% since 1980. In addition, civilian deaths attributed to these fires have gone down by more than 60% *. With that being said, the multifamily construction fires of this year have put a spotlight on the vulnerabilities of these structures prior to the full installation of drywall and operational fire alarm systems. Once these systems are in place, wood-frame buildings perform quite well when compared to non-combustible apartment communities built from concrete and steel. For me, and many of my colleagues, the potential for “knee-jerk” reactions from code officials surrounding these incidents—resulting in greater restrictions on wood-frame construction—is cause for much concern. With an approximate cost of $20,000 more per unit to build using light gauge steel, further restricting the use of wood in multifamily buildings would ultimately reduce the affordability of apartments and decrease land values.

Recognizing the increased risk of fire with wood-frame construction, our company is striving to address the source of these incidents. By educating our employees and subcontractors, and continuing to evolve our safety practices, we will minimize the chances of a catastrophe occurring on one of our projects. In addition to training on proper material handling, processes and incident protocols, we employ the following safety measures when it comes to preventing fires:

1) 24-hour fire watch on projects from the beginning of wood-framing through the completion of the building’s automatic fire protection systems. This includes night fire watch during all times when we do not have Bozzuto Construction staff on site. These security guards assist with fire protection by walking and monitoring the site while also providing protection against vandalism and theft. They also help prevent potential arsonist from gaining access to the site after hours.

2) “Hot work” permit process implementation. Bozzuto Construction has implemented a process in which all subcontractors must obtain a daily hot work permit from the site superintendent in order to perform any activity/work that may produce a flame or spark. The permit indicates that specific precautions must be taken in order to perform these tasks.

3) Properly equipping sites with fire extinguishers—per OSHA regulations.

4) Restricting site access. Prior to working on site, all subcontractor employees go through a site orientation to receive a hard hat sticker unique to the project. Additionally, all site visitors are required to sign in at the project office and are escorted on site for the duration of their tour or meeting.

5) Electronic surveillance is a continuously evolving technology. Currently, we are exploring various options for live monitoring of our project sites using electronic surveillance equipment.

Mike Schlegel I President | Bozzuto Construction Company|

Return to top


Cross Properties’ 10 Union Breaks Ground

We are excited to announce that construction on our newest project in Pennsylvania, 10 Union, is underway with owner, Cross Properties. A new four-story, Class-A multifamily development, 10 Union is located in the historic Philadelphia suburb of Bala Cynwyd. This community is the first part of Cross Properties larger revitalization plan for North Bala Avenue (“NoBa”). It is going to feature 109 new apartment units, 164 below-grade parking spaces, two outdoor terraces and nearly 8,500 square feet of interior amenities, including a fitness studio, conference spaces and a resident lounge. Future development is slated to include two additional mixed-use apartment communities—1 Cynwyd and 202 Bala.

10 Union is Bozzuto Construction’s first project with Cross Properties. The development broke ground in June and is scheduled for completion in early 2019. For more information about Cross Properties and how the 10 Union project is helping to redefine the Bala Cynwyd core, check out this video.

Return to top


The Trove Breaks Ground

Last month, Bozzuto Construction broke ground on Washington REIT’s new 401-unit, multifamily development in Arlington, Virginia. Appropriately named The Trove, Washington REIT’s Senior Director of Development, Nicole Morrill said, “… [the development] will be a treasure trove of desirable features that will set it apart from other new apartments in the Columbia Pike neighborhood.” With more than 22,000 square feet of luxury amenities including a fitness center, a rooftop terrace complete with an outdoor kitchen, a pool and a billiards room, this community will be a model of modern urban living.

The development includes three separate buildings—each standing seven stories tall with two levels of concrete podium below five stories of wood-frame construction. In addition, the community features a 10-story, cast-in-place parking structure.


Return to top


HOC Back To School Fest

This year Bozzuto Construction joined forces with the Housing Opportunities Commission (HOC) of Montgomery County to assist with their annual Back to School Fest supporting HOC youth. In association with several organizations, this month-long effort provided more than 900 backpacks filled with school supplies to children in need.

“HOC strives to help Montgomery County families reach their fullest potential,” said HOC Executive Director Stacy L. Spann. “With our youth, that means making sure they are ready to start the school year off right—whether that’s programming to help stem ‘Summer Slide’ or a backpack filled with school supplies. We’re proud to partner with many great organizations to equip these young folks for another year of success.”

In addition to donating more than 100 backpacks to the cause, several Bozzuto employees volunteered at the event on August 25 assisting with check-in, backpack distribution and face painting!

Return to top


BCC’s Director of Safety, Nathan Slavin, Named a Rising Star of Safety by the National Safety Council

Nathan Slavin, Director of Safety for Bozzuto Construction Company, has been named a 2017 Rising Star of Safety by the National Safety Council (NSC). Since joining the company in 2014, Slavin has played an integral role in the development of Bozzuto Construction’s safety procedures and protocols, including leading the charge in developing the company’s first safety campaign—S.A.F.E.—Stop and Focus Every time. Click here to read the full press release.

Return to top


Dan Blatzheim, Senior Project Manager

Tell us about your role at Bozzuto Construction.

As a Senior Project Manager, I manage subcontractor schedules, organize our workforce and consistently communicate with my project teams and clients. In addition, I oversee the financial portion of projects including the buyout process and budget. It is my responsibility to work with the construction team on a daily basis to ensure all team members are completing their work safely and to the company’s quality standards.

What milestone or achievement are you most proud of accomplishing while working at Bozzuto? When I first started at Bozzuto Construction Company in 2001, I was hired as an Assistant Superintendent, since then, I am proud of how I have worked my way up to Senior Project Manager. Bozzuto has been a great example of a company that gives its employees the opportunities and tools needed to grow.

What do you enjoy most about working at Bozzuto?

The team atmosphere within this company is what sets it apart. I never feel alone. There is always someone available to help and support—no matter what the need may be.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out in the industry?

I would tell them to keep their head up and work smart. Everyone will make mistakes. What separates the “goods” from the “greats” are those who know how to fix those mistakes efficiently and effectively.

What is one thing your colleagues would be surprised to learn about you?

I think almost everyone would be surprised to learn that I am the youngest of 15 siblings. I have 24 nieces and nephews and became a great-uncle twice by the age of 39!

What do you like to do in your free time? Any hobbies?

I really enjoy being outside. You can usually find me biking, golfing, fishing or working on projects around the house.

Return to top