Architect helps 'design' post's future
April 19, 2013
FORT CARSON, Colo. -- Attention to detail and calm demeanor have gotten Jim Schloss a long way in his 15 years at Fort Carson.
The Directorate of Public Works Engineering Division architect, and retired Coast Guard officer, is an integral part of the engineering team tasked with shaping the future of installation facilities old and new.
"Jim is a tremendous architect and a great patriot," said Joe Wyka, DPW Engineering Division chief. "He truly comes to work every day to serve Soldiers and Families and that is evident in his tenacity to get projects right. He is perpetually positive and just a great person to be around."
Co-worker Kelly Hanna, DPW Engineering Division architect, who works side-by-side with Schloss said she admires his ability to bring seemingly impossible projects to completion.
"Jim can just roll with the punches -- he is untiring when it comes to customers and large design scopes."
As an architect for DPW, Schloss prepares architectural designs and working drawings, cost estimates and project management for assigned projects.
One $5 million project completed on Schloss' computer "drafting table" is the conversion of the old commissary into a Soldier Readiness Processing center where all appointments can be managed at one location.
"Deploying and returning Soldiers will now be able to process through under one roof instead of having to go to several overcrowded and undersized detached buildings," Schloss said.
Major features of the SRP center, once completed, include a central issue facility (currently under construction), briefing rooms and suites for physical exams, dental exams, optometry, audiology, immunizations and neural and behavioral health assessments, in addition to personnel, legal, financial and spiritual support offices.
A unique, convenient aspect of the project is the inclusion of a new, full-service Division of Motor Vehicles office available to Soldiers and the Fort Carson community.
"Locating all of the functions under one roof will result in time savings and stress reduction for the Soldiers and staff," said Schloss. The new center will also feature large common waiting areas and individual waiting rooms with televisions and reading materials and an Army and Air Force Exchange Service snack area for customers.
"From its inception, DPW took on several challenges to create a flexible building to meet the needs of current requirements and … future needs," said Schloss. "This is being accomplished by implementing the 'core and shell' concept used in commercial buildings. The core features include the common areas found in all commercial buildings: the restrooms, mechanical spaces, corridors, etc.
"The remaining space is divided into stand alone, contained zones that can be individually modified for particular present and future needs. This is an example of reusing an existing structure to meet up-to-date needs instead of programming, funding and constructing a new facility at a greatly increased cost under a multi-year process."
Schloss paid attention to all aspects of the project including ensuring it adhered to sustainable principles Fort Carson promotes.
"Fort Carson is a sustainability leader in the Colorado Springs community and sustainable features include removing all asbestos from the building at one time, bringing in natural daylight for energy savings and providing a more pleasant work environment, new energy-efficient heating/cooling and lighting systems and using low volatile organic compound materials for a healthier environment."
The next projects on Schloss' agenda include heating, ventilation and air conditioning and energy improvement initiatives for Fort Carson.