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The Factory on Willow Featured in NHBR’s July “From the Ground Up”

The July issue of New Hampshire Business Review features The Factory on Willow in a special section “From the Ground Up”. TFMoran is proud to be a part of the project team with Eckman Construction and Market Square Architects. We invite you to check out the article by clicking this link or by reading the text below.

Congratulations to the Factory on Willow and the whole project team!


FROM THE GROUND UP: The Factory on Willow: ‘If you restore it, they will come’


Remember the movie, “Field of Dreams” with Kevin Costner and James Earl Jones? An Iowa farmer is summoned by voices from the Great Beyond to build a baseball stadium in his corn field. One of the most iconic lines that is now part of our popular culture is “If you build it, they will come.”

In the case of The Factory on Willow, the saying would be, “If you restore it, they will come” and inspire other investors to do the same with other properties in Manchester’s South End.

When Elizabeth “Liz” Hitchcock decided to purchase the former Cohas Shoe Factory on 252 Willow St. in 2019, she formulated a concept they knew would yield great dividends. Her plan was to restore the 90,000-square-foot factory into a mixed-use development where artists and gig professionals could live, work and enjoy everything that downtown Manchester has to offer while preserving the rich history of the mill that was constructed in 1904.

Preston Hunter, vice president of Eckman Construction Co. in Bedford and the project’s general contractor, explained the end result is a four-story complex that includes 61 studio apartments, commercial space, a food truck court and 16 Airbnb units to accommodate nurses and visiting high-tech workers. The Artist in Residence program also enables artists of all types to live and complete special projects at The Factory on Willow.

Hunter said the space also includes commercial uses that may eventually include a craft distillery, beer garden and office space. Loon Chocolate and 603 Charcuterie have already established thriving retail businesses there, and a large event space is available for rental.

“There are a lot of opportunities for different uses,” Hunter said.

In addition to the food truck patio, Hunter said an amphitheater is planned where live performances will be staged.

“We are in the process of creating a distillery on-site,” said Hunter, adding that it would consist of a free-standing building that would include a tasting room.

“We did create, in addition to the food truck patio, an area for residents who would like to have raised beds and grow some vegetable gardens and other plantings.”

Besides the amphitheater and additional landscaping that will take place throughout The Factory on Willow’s property, Hitchcock recently said she is banking on two transportation projects to spur growth in the South End and fuel greater success for The Factory on Willow. The first includes a $25 million federal RAISE grant that will be used to create a new roadway with a bridge and pedestrian bike access near the intersection of South Willow St. and Queen City Ave. along with a pedestrian bridge over Granite Street. The second is the completion of the South Manchester Rail Trail that runs directly behind The Factory on Willow. The rail trail is part of a much larger network that will eventually run from Goffstown to the Seacoast. When completed, both projects will offer improved access to the South End.

Hunter said that Hitchcock’s vision was to create a living space where art would be promoted and celebrated as well as integrated into the surrounding community.

Hitchcock also selected items to be featured in the building to display its rich history, including the original wood and glass doors, cast iron boiler arch doors and a wooden beam that has been repurposed into a bench in the lobby.

Adam Wagner, owner of Market Square Architects in Portsmouth, played an instrumental role to help Hitchcock transform her vision into a dynamic design that incorporates the mill’s rustic red brick walls and timber frames in the building’s open-air studio apartments. Orbit Group with visiting designers created the furnished Airbnb units so they will appeal to the targeted demographic of artists and gig economy workers.

“What’s unique about this project is residents are looking for more than just cookie-cutter apartments. They want to be part of a community,” Hunter said. “It is set up to be a real live-work studio experience.”

By combining a millennial-style, live-work experience and the history of the former McElwain Shoe Factory, Hunter believes that Hitchcock succeeded with all of her goals.

Hunter’s family also has a direct link to the mill’s storied past.

“My mother-in-law worked in the shoe factory when she was a teenager,” he said.

The two-year project that began in 2019 was completed in March 2021 when the first residents moved into the building, Hunter said.

All of this was happening during the Covid-19 pandemic. “We were able to keep the job site running throughout the pandemic,” Hunter explained.

Hunter pointed out the process to transform the once abandoned factory into its current use was a challenging one. “It is important to remember that this building was a collection of additions that had been tacked on to the original mill building over the decades as the use had changed and it presented a lot of complications and challenges from a design standpoint,” he said.

They partnered with Market Square Architects to deal with those challenges. TFMoran, the structural engineer out of Bedford, played a key role in helping them evaluate the structure of the building and the additions, Hunter said.

“We determined as a team that some of the newer additions were functionally obsolete. We ended up demolishing some portions of the building that were not part of the original mill building that was bult in 1904,” Hunter said.

“We brought the building back to its original form. That allowed us to keep what was best about the building and remove the portions that didn’t add any value. We also exposed portions of the building that hadn’t seen the light of day for a very long time,” Hunter explained.
He noted the project included a lot of masonry restoration. He said there is a tower that was part of the original mill complex that was restored. There was also a great deal of masonry undertaken on the outside and inside of the building.

He said the building also had a timber frame that was showing its age. “The structural engineer evaluated every beam and every column after we had opened and exposed everything to identify the ones that needed to be re-supported.”
Like many mill restoration projects, this one also required its share of environmental remediation.

“The building also did contain some asbestos and lead paint, which had been sort of buried under multiple layers of flooring. We had to remove all of the hazardous materials and everything was disposed of to create a clean environment, so we could start essentially with a clean slate,” Hunter said.

Hunter said the site was also home to a former underground oil storage tank that had failed 50 years ago. The tank had leaked its heating oil, and it was a managed site by the state Department of Environmental Protection. In most cases, developers might leave it alone and pave over it. But Hitchcock decided it was best to remove the contaminated soil and clean up the site with fresh soil. The building and site were then completely cleaned out and restored to their original state.

“The team really put the time and the effort in to understand the unique quirks of the building as much as possible before we started construction. The building really has great bones, and the design goal was to really showcase the existing qualities as much as possible,” Hunter said.

Some of the other improvements included two new stairwells to meet new egress requirements for the apartments on both ends of the building floor to floor. The building was also designed to provide fresh air to every apartment and common space in the building. New windows were installed throughout the building with beautiful black frames that are historically accurate and provide great natural light throughout.

“It is also an investment in the southern part of the city. There has been a lot of redevelopment in the Millyard, the North End and downtown. This project is the first to recognize there is great opportunity in the South End of Manchester. It has created a bit of a destination onto itself by having all those amenities. It will also create an opportunity for development in this part of the city as the need for housing continues to grow,” Hunter said.

The team’s collective efforts to create a new crown jewel in Manchester has also gained recognition from Plan NH, which awarded the project a merit award in June.

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TFMoran Celebrates at the BOB Awards

Members of the TFM staff turned out at the NHBR Best of Business (BOB) Awards Celebration on Thursday, March 10th at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord. This year’s theme was “Masquerade”, encouraging guests to dress in their semi-formal attire and a masquerade style mask. TFM sponsored the Photobooth at the event – attendees enjoyed stopping by to strike a pose!

TFMoran was honored to receive our TENTH straight BOB Award as “Best Engineering Firm” in New Hampshire Business Review’s BOB Awards reader’s survey. “It is a great honor that we have now won for the past ten years in a row!” said Robert Duval, president of TFMoran. “I believe this remarkable degree of community recognition is a reflection of our core values: focusing on client service and delivering the right engineering solution for every project.”

Congratulations to all the BOB Award winners!

A portion of the proceeds went to benefit Waypoint, a non-profit organization (formerly Child and Family Services).

See more photos of the event here.

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TFMoran’s Dylan Cruess is Celebrated Among NH 200 Business Leaders at NH Business Review Reception Event

Congratulations to TFMoran’s Chief Operating Officer, Dylan Cruess, who was once again selected as one of New Hampshire’s 200 Most Influential Business Leaders “New Hampshire 200” by New Hampshire Business Review. TFMoran principals Robert Duval, Nick Golon, and Chris Rice. along with staff and associates attended the New Hampshire 200 Reception, proudly supporting him for this great honor. The celebration was held on December 9, 2021, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Manchester for the 200 prominent individuals featured in the NHBR publication, “New Hampshire 200”. Honorees and guests enjoyed networking, refreshments, and hors d’oeuvres.

This year’s theme was fire and ice, as guests enjoyed a smores bar, ice cream from Sub Zero Nitrogen Ice Cream, music from the Nick Goumas Quartet, a champagne toast, courtesy of sponsor United Healthcare, and a photo booth sponsored by TFMoran.

We thank New Hampshire Business Review and their staff for putting on this special event which TFMoran was proud to be a sponsor of.

Congratulations to Dylan and to all of the selected New Hampshire 200 for impacting our beautiful State of New Hampshire in so many positive ways!

Check out the 2022 issue of NH 200 here.

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TFMoran project featured in NHBR’s “From the Ground Up”

The recently opened Bowman Place at Olde Bedford has been chosen as NH Business Review‘s “From the Ground Up” in the April 2021 issue. The project began in October of 2019 and was completed ahead of schedule despite numerous hurdles throughout the construction process.

TFMoran provided civil/site engineering, permitting, traffic engineering, and landscape architecture services for the new 3-story senior living residence. The 95,000sf, 150-bed facility developed by Senior Living of Bedford, provides 69 assisted living apartments and 36 memory care apartments with 24-hour care services. Amenities include a fitness room, library, game room, activities room, dining rooms, and other common areas for residents to enjoy.

The project team also included Development Manager Munson & Associates, EGA Architects, and Eckman Construction Company.

See the full story here.

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Party On! 2021 BOB Awards Virtual Celebration a Success!

The BOB awards party was held virtually on April 1, with winners and guests celebrating together over Zoom. The party included time to network with other NH business leaders, a trivia contest with Prizes sponsored by TFMoran and a keynote speech by Tom Boucher, CEO-Owner of Great NH Restaurants. Attendees were invited to submit their celebratory photos during the event for the chance to win gift cards to local restaurants.

The winner of each round of trivia received a prize of AirPods, an Amazon Echo Show or an iPad!

TFMoran was honored as the 2021 “Best of Business” in the engineering category for the ninth consecutive year! Awards are based on a poll of 4,700 NH Business Review readers. The BOB Awards honor the best of business across New Hampshire in over 90 business-to-business categories.

A big THANK YOU to those who voted for us and CONGRATULATIONS to all the winners!

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TFMoran Sponsors NHBR’s Real Estate and Construction Section

TFMoran is a sponsor of NH Business Review‘s ‘Real Estate and Construction’ section in its most recent issue, which features the article “Environmental Due Diligence of Commercial Property“. The article suggests commercial purchasers determine a property’s environmental condition by working with an experienced Environmental Professional.

TFMoran offers Environmental Professional services, with environmental scientists on staff who work to identify and solve existing environmental issues efficiently and in full conformance. Our professional staff includes Wetland Scientists, Certified Professionals in Sediment and Erosion Control (CPESC) and Certified Erosion Sediment and Storm Water Inspectors (CESSWI). These specialized certifications are required for many environmentally sensitive projects.

View the full issue here.

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TFMoran Sponsors NH Business Review’s ‘Down to Business’ Podcast Series

TFMoran and McLane Middleton are sponsors of NH Business Review’s 2021 podcast series “Down to Business”.  Down to Business is a weekly NH Business Review podcast, which started in February 2020. Each Wednesday, Editor Jeff Feingold sits down with Associate Editor Liisa Rajala, Reporter Bob Sanders, and their guests to talk about the latest business headlines and the news readers need to know about.

Listen to “Down to Business” on Google Podcasts, Apple PodcastsSpotify or wherever you like to listen. All prior episodes of the podcast are available, with an option to subscribe to be notified of future episodes.

Recent episodes sponsored by TFMoran include:

Alex Horton and Ashley Oberg On Supporting Local Business, Podcasting

Episode 52 March 3, 2021

This week, Downtown Manchester business owners, Alex Horten of Cafe La Reine, and Ashley Oberg of Barre Life discuss how their businesses are weathering the pandemic, the importance of supporting local, and about their podcast Coffee at the Barre.

 

Episode 49 February 10, 2021

The Cure (the team from DHMC’s new Covid-19 podcast)

This week, NH Business Review editor Jeff Feingold talks with the hosts of Dartmouth-Hitchcock’s new COVID-19 podcast, The Cure, including Jose R. Mercado, MD, Rima Mercado, MD, Amogh Karnik, MD, and Marshall Ward, MD. The team discusses how the podcast aims to combat misinformation about COVID-19 and the vaccine, they break down the logistics of vaccine distribution in New Hampshire, and talk about the long term.

 

Episode 48 February 5, 2021

Liz Gray and the NH SBDC

This week, NH Business Review editor Jeff Feingold talks to Elizabeth Gray, State Director of the NH Small Business Development Center. Liz provides a look into what kinds of challenges the SBDC was able to help small businesses meet during the past year, and her outlook for the business now and as the year unfolds.

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NH Business Review “From the Ground Up” features Bar Harbor Bank & Trust

The Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, a recent TFMoran project located in Bedford, NH is now complete amid these challenging times. This is Bar Harbor Bank & Trust’s first New Hampshire location, with others throughout New England. TFMoran provided Civil Engineering, Permitting, Land Surveying and Landscape Architecture services for the project. TFMoran is proud to be a part of the project team which included developer Paramount Partners, architect JD Design Associates, and Sullivan Construction.

See the full article here NHBR_From The Ground Up – Bar Harbor Bank & Trust

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TFMoran voted Best NH Engineering Firm!

TFMoran was honored as the 2021 “Best of Business” in the engineering category for the ninth consecutive year! Awards are based on a poll of 4,700 NH Business Review readers.

TFMoran President Robert Duval PE LEED APAccording to Bob Duval, President of TFMoran, “This recognition from NH Business Review Readers year after year, is a tribute to the ‘putting clients first’ ethic that our employees practice every day, and the positive impact they have on our community.”

The BOB Awards honor the best of business across New Hampshire in over 90 business-to-business categories. The award ceremony will be held virtually on Thursday, April 1 and is free to attend. Online guests will be able to network with business leaders from across the state, while also enjoying complementary party boxes, watch parties, trivia contests, and prizes. Click here to register and join in the celebration!

A Big “THANK YOU” to all who voted for us, and Congratulations to all who won!

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TFMoran’s Stormwater Project, I-93 Widening, Featured in NH Business Review

NH Business Review‘s February issue features the long awaited interstate widening project that is expected to fully open this spring. The strip of interstate being widened runs from Manchester to Salem, the goal being to decongest traffic and enhance the safety of motorists. TFMoran provided Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans (SWPPP), performed stormwater turbidity monitoring and inspection services for the project. TFMoran’s team of Certified Professionals in Erosion Sediment Control (CPESC), Certified Erosion and Sediment Stormwater Inspectors (CESSWI) and Environmental Scientists are  working with NHDOT and NHDES project officials.

The team of highway builders have included R.S. Audley, Weaver Brothers Construction, George R. Cairns & Sons, Severino Trucking Co., Alvin J. Coleman & Sons, and E.D. Swett.

For more info on this project visit: www.rebuildingi93.com

Read the full NHBR article here.