Red River High School Performance Hall – Grand Forks, ND

Grand Forks, ND
General Contractor:
Gast Construction Company
EAPC – Grand Forks, ND
Grand Forks School District
Precast Products:
Wall Panels


Grand Forks Red River High School’s new $9.4 million 33,000 sf performing arts facility includes a 700 seat auditorium with back-of-house support spaces, event lobby, orchestra rehearsal room, 12 practice studios, storage area, a digital music composition lab, and an independent stage lift for performances and set erection.

Precast wall panels from Wells Concrete comprise the shell structure of the theater and fly tower with respective elevations of 44′ and 67′ above the main slab on grade floor elevations. The NW and SW corners of the precast theater structure have a substantial portion of their sections ‘cut out’ to form an inverted L-shape giving the illusion of a suspended sofit. The “cut outs’ combined with tall walls create a high wind shear condition that pushed the limits of precast panel to panel connection design. The west, lower precast wall is out-of-plane with the upper wall panels by sixteen inches.  The 25′ tall by 47′ wide stage opening below the fly tower is created by an 8′ deep precast header panel.

This project received the AIA North Dakota 2014 Honor Award.

Key Features:

  • Custom designed precast wall panel face in the “house”
  • Basement Storage under stage floor
  • Extensive acoustical sound treatments in “house” and throughout

Wells Concrete produced and delivered the following precast members:

  • 10″ Solid FS Wall Panels       5,224 square feet of panels in steel toweled finish
  • 8″ Solid FS Wall Panels         7,553 square feet of non-insulated panels in sandblasted form liner finish
  • 8″ Solid FS Wall Panels         16,046 square feet of non-insulated grey structural panels


Red River Award 1 Red River Award 2 Red River Award-plaque RedRiverPerformHall.2011.#2303.Grand Forks.ND7

Bishop-Garrigan High School – Algona, IA


Algona, IA
General Contractor:
Dean Synder Construction
Bergland + Cram
Raker Rhodes
Bishop Garrigan Schools


The new, year-long project, $3 million addition for Bishop-Garrigan High School in Algona, is coming to its end with project completion scheduled for August 2015.

The 18,000 SF addition will add a gymnasium, additional class and office space, two new locker rooms, and a new entry onto the existing school. When finished, the new gymnasium will have seating for 1,000 people.

For this project, Wells Concrete placed 36 pieces for a total of 13,885 SF that included up to 13’ wide x 32’-8” tall panels, weighing approximately 47,500 pounds. The panels were a 6”-4”-3” wythe configuration with an R-value of 20.8 and the building size was 102’-6” x 110’. The panels were load bearing for 110’ roof joists and incorporated cast in electrical units.

The owner and architects were looking for a high contrast look so an orange acid etch finish with dark water wash accent bands was provided. The black granite aggregate contrasted highly from the orange matrix so when the matrix was washed away you get the desired high contrast look.

Bishop Garrigan High School is a private school that serves 172 coed students in grades 9-12 and is Roman Catholic in orientation. The school belongs to the National Catholic Educational Association.

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United South Central – Wells, MN

USC School

Wells, MN
General Contractor:
Kraus-Anderson Construction Co.
ULS Engineers
USC Public School District ISD 2134


A new United South Central School in Wells, Minn., just west of Albert Lea was completed in September 2014. The 155,000-square-foot pre K-12 school replaces the former school, portions of which were originally built in 1933.

Construction on the $28.8 million school began in May 2013 and is located on a 66-acre site featuring a bus garage and athletic facilities, including practice fields, a track, a football stadium, baseball and softball fields, a playground and tennis courts. The K-12 school will serve approximately 625 students.

The new school is a total precast project, architects had designed the school to only include precast for the walls, but Wells was able to come in at the same price as steel, which convinced the architects to change their drawings.

Wells Concrete placed 722 pieces including:

  • Insulated wall panels     86,421 SF
  • Solid wall panels           4,220 SF
  • Columns                       1,247 LF
  • Beams                          1,098 LF
  • 42”double tees              26,984 SF
  • 32”double tees              57,524 SF
  • 24”double tees              67,358 SF
  • 20”double tees              675 SF
  • Hollow core                  14,000 SF

All screed side finish was hard trowel finish exposed to view.

The school houses two gyms, a high school gym with two regulation basketball courts and an elementary gym with one regulation basketball court. There is also a precast concrete etching of the school’s team name, the Rebels, and Mascot in the high school gym placed by Wells.

The new school includes a large commons area bordered on the right by 45 classrooms and on the left by gyms, shops, music rooms and the auditorium. Students eat in the common area, and concessions are sold there during sporting events.  To display the rough cut and beautiful side of a total precast project, the School’s commons area shows exposed aggregate and exposed columns beams tees.

The classrooms are for students in kindergarten through grade 12. The early education hall has bright colors painted by each group of classroom doors to help students find their classes easier. The interiors of the classrooms were also colorful, both with decorations and wall paint.

There is also a large auditorium that seats a maximum capacity of 602, with floor and balcony seating. In addition to the other new things at the school, there is a weight room that will have public access, and a computer-aided design lab for students. Wells also placed a 63,000 lb. spandrel with the school name cast in for a beautiful display for those that enter the school.

Another great feature of the new school is part of the Metrodome will live in the new football stadium, which will use seats from the former home of the Vikings and Twins. The district built the new facility following the passage of a referendum by taxpayers to fund the construction. But with a tight budget, local businesses chipped in to give the stadium a bit of extra special flair with the purchase of 840 Metrodome seats for $40 each. Wells Concrete was one of the business that contributed to the football stadium by donating the precast structure.

The United South Central School District currently serves the cities of Wells, Kiester, Bricelyn, Easton, Freeborn and Walters, Minn.

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10-20 020 Rebel Wall20140820_164209_resized 20140820_164408_resized

Erik Ramstad Middle School – Minot, ND


Minot, ND
General Contractor:
Kraus-Anderson Construction Co.
Anderson, Wade & Whitty
Minot Public Schools


The Erik Ramstad Middle School was a high priority project to get student services back to normal levels after the devastating floods of 2011. The 128,000 sq. foot project received support funding from recovery partners including the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the State of North Dakota. Finding a fast track approach to open a replacement facility for the one destroyed by the flood was a key element. The school was fully enclosed in roughly 65 working days. The ultimate fast-track goals were met with a 16 month construction cycle from groundbreaking to opening for students.

Uses of the precast elements were instrumental in addressing the fast construction schedule. Of course, the precast wall and roof panels provide extreme performance capabilities in energy efficiency, durability and low maintenance, and strength.

The architectural team was looking for an aesthetic contrast on the exterior finish and was able to achieve this goal with one mix design and three different treatments including: water wash, sandblast, and acid etch finishes. Another architectural feature included a wave pattern that was achieved using custom built stations in Wells Concrete’s Grand Forks plant forms for a consistent pattern that aligned panel to panel. This wave pattern was then sandblasted and water washed to further accentuate the detail. This wave pattern design was utilized throughout the exterior of the structure and was paired with a thin brick finish around the pool area.

The pool area boasts a double tee roof with a 46′ span to accommodate the indoor pool. The combination of precast wall panels and double tee roof were utilized to mitigate moisture issues prevalent in a pool area.



Ramstad 1 2014E5T_1372_3_4_5_6_tonemapped
Ramstad - gymRamstad - pool

Hawkins Chemical – Rosemount, MN


Location: Rosemount, MN
General Contractor: Knutson Services, Inc.
Architect: Paul Meyer Architects, Inc.
Structural Engineer: Paul Meyer Architects, Inc.


Hawkins, Inc. is a local chemical distribution company which brings in raw, high–strength chemicals from national manufacturers and combines and/or dilutes them to be used for various industrial uses. The new Hawkins Rosemount Warehouse is a project consisting of an almost 65,000 square foot precast warehouse, small office area, exterior railroad siding and an exterior chemical storage tank farm. Concrete roof double tees and interior wall panels were used for protection from fire and explosion. Epoxy mesh was used in roof tees and interior wythe of wall panels to protect from the harsh environment.

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Skye at Arbor Lakes Phase II


Location: Maple Grove, MN
General Contractor: Stonebridge Construction Inc.
Architect: Humphrey’s Partners Architects Florida LLC
Structural Engineer: Humphrey’s Partners Architects LLC

Description:  Located in Maple Grove, Sky at Arbor Lakes consists of a rectangular, total precast concrete parking structure which is completely surrounded by a wood-framed, four-story apartment complex. This style of building is called the Texas donut, and works well to keep the parking structure temperature controlled, and adds convenience through the tenants’ ability to park on the same floor as their apartment. The parking ramp has a capacity of 460 cars, with one subterranean level and four levels of supported parking, plus a roof.

The precast concrete ramp was built first on a cast-in-place concrete foundation. Precast components included 20 beams, 6 columns, 220 double tees, 2 solid slabs, 2 spandrels, 16 stairs, 14 stitch walls, 165 wall panels, and 10 planks. The double tees span 60 feet, and strand and rebar reinforcement in the precast concrete utilize recycled steel. The perimeter walls of the garage are 10-inch solid precast concrete panels that, along with a one- to two-inch gap between the precast and the stick framing of apartments, meets the fire separation requirements.


Apartment developments in Minnesota are commonly built with a single level of underground parking below three-to-five levels of stick-framed apartments. When you return from shopping you have to take your groceries to an elevator and then up to the level of your apartment. At the Skye at Arbor Lakes, you can park on the same level as your apartment.

Gary Pooley of Wells Concrete


Cardiovascular Systems Inc. – New Brighton, MN


Location: New Brighton, MN
General Contractor: Ryan Companies
Architect: Mohagen Hansen Architectural Group
Structural Engineer: Advanced Structural Technologies, Inc.

The development of the Cardiovascular Headquarter project involved months of negotiations and hurdles as the property for this project required considerable land-use approvals and redevelopment agreements with associated costs in public improvements and environmental remediation. The city agreed to pay a share of the costs and contributing some TIF financing in the sale of the land to Cardiovascular. The selected property is called the New Brighton Exchange, which is a ten acre plot located in the northeast quadrant of Highway 694 and Old Highway 8 in New Brighton, MN.

CSI.4CSI.2CSI.1The 125,000 sq. ft. building will include office and research and development space. Ryan was originally set to build, own and lease the headquarters, but plans changed for Cardiovascular stepping in to buy the land and own their building retaining Ryan as the General Contractor. The plans were also originally developed with 8-foot wide precast panels; Wells Concrete provided an alternative to the design, which included a 12-foot wide panel. By increasing the panel width, the project gained efficiency in production; in the installation process with less number of panels to transport and handle for setting; and few joints to caulk. The panel layout modifications offered a more economical precast scope.

An architecturally finished precast panel was also embraced in lieu of gray panels (initially specified to be painted) with two different mix designs in three different textures. The modification offers distinction between the main entrances and main building. The main entrances will feature white-colored panels with a sandblast finish while the main building will boast charcoal-colored finish with a combination of sandblast and water-wash with reveals within the water-wash areas in acid-etch.

Original Mock-Up

Original Mock-Up

Penn and American – Bloomington, MN

Penn and American.2

Owner: United Properties
Contractor: RJM Construction
Architect: Elness Swenson Graham Architects Inc
Engineer: Ericksen Roed and Associates

Description: Located at the South East Corner of Penn Avenue and American Boulevard, this new mixed use development will enhance this already bustling area of Bloomington, MN. A total precast system using precast foundation wall, columns, beams, double tees, hollow-core plank and stair / elevator shaft walls was selected to create the first and second level podiums. The system allows for both subterranean parking below the precast deck and grade parking on top of the precast deck. The East end of the podium supports a 28,600 square foot grocery store operated by Fresh Thyme. The West end supports a retail space occupied in part by Red Robin Restaurant. Hilton Home2 will operate a 107 room, four-story 68,000 square foot hotel above the restaurant space. This serves as a great example of how precast can be utilized to create a structure that can transition from heated space to unheated parking while providing support for the upper levels. The businesses are expected to open in late 2015 and early 2016.

For more more information about this project, contact Gary Pooley, Sales Manager.

PennandAmerican326x410 DSC_0609In the news…

Minnesota Veterans Home – Minneapolis, MN

MN Veteran's Home

Location: Minneapolis, MN
General Contractor: Adolfson & Peterson Construction
Architect:  Mohagen Hanson Architectural Group
Structural Engineer: Ericksen Roed & Associates

 Description: In 2011, the Minnesota’s Veterans Homes began planning the design of a 100-bed skilled nursing care facility at their 53-acre campus on the banks of the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. The architect defaulted to a conventional masonry wall system because of the State’s guidelines to maintain the look of the historic civil war era campus.

Well into the design, the general contractor discovered the project was over budget and a more economical design was necessary. Something less field labor intense than a masonry wall system, while also being sensitive to the historic nature of the project.

The general contractor consulted our sales department on an alternative for architectural precast insulated wall panels with cast-in masonry thin brick and integrally cast-on architectural features, such as projecting windowsills, bands and lintels. The general contractor quickly determined that architectural precast was the solution to keep the project within budget and on schedule during the winter months of construction. However, since the architect was not familiar with architectural precast insulated wall panels, he needed convincing that precast could meet the stringent design requirements.

Our sales and drafting departments combined efforts in providing the architect with early panel layout drawings, 3D wall sections, brick and precast samples, and carefully worked through every detail. Eventually they gained confidence that architectural precast was indeed the right choice for this project.

With the opening scheduled for later in 2015, we are is proud to have played a part in providing an honorable healthcare environment for our nation’s heroes.

For more information about this project, contact Bob Geil.

“The new Minnesota’s Veterans Home Building demonstrates that architectural precast insulated wall panels provides a cost effective wall system, while sustaining the integrity of quality architecture.”

MN Veteran's Home MN Veteran's Home MN Veteran's Home MN Veteran's Home






In the News:

Minnesota Vikings Stadium – Minneapolis, MN


Location: Minneapolis, MN
General Contractor: Mortenson Construction
Architect: HKS Inc.
Structural Engineer: Thornton Tomasetti

Wells Concrete is proud to be part of the new U.S. Bank – Minnesota Vikings Stadium. This iconic stadium will be a highlight of the 2016 NFL season nationwide for its unique design as well as a treasured staple in Minnesota for generations to come. When completed the new stadium will seat 65,400 fans giving it the largest seating capacity of any Minnesota stadium.

It is worth noting that a handful of employees have worked at the Maple Grove site long enough to have been part of the MetroDome project erected in 1982 and are now part of the construction of its replacement. This is a great testament to the longevity and dedication of our employees.

Wells Maple Grove facility has a long history of providing precast components in stadium construction providing precast stadia to support over 300,000 spectator seats in other well know event centers.

We continue to make progress on this project, we set 2,600 pieces to date; 400 pieces still to be placed in the upper bowl and completed by the end of July.  After the upper bowl is finished, we will move to the lower bowl and finish the remaining 2,200 pieces by Christmas.


A total of
5,096 pieces
of precast
will be provided
and delivered on
1,534 truck loads over the duration
of this project.

cubic yards
of concrete
are required
We will be pouring and shipping
60,575,850 lbs
or 30,288 tons
of precast from our
Maple Grove plant to the site.
The stadium will seat
65,400 fans,
which is the largest
seating capacity of any Minnesota stadium!


Burleigh County Shop – Bismarck, ND


 Location: Bismarck, ND
General Contractor:  Capital City Construction Inc.
 Architect:  ülb design group
Structural Engineer: CWSTRUCTURAL Engineers

 Description: When Burleigh County decided to move forward with their new County Shop 52,000-sq. ft. building to replace their aging existing structure, precast quickly became the system of choice. As the design team worked through the overall aesthetics of this project, they called upon Wells Concrete to help assemble a cost-effective yet visually appealing finish.

The end result was a combination of sandblasted and water washed exterior wall panel finish utilizing one mix design to achieve the aesthetic contrast. The design team created an inviting entrance utilizing a combination of sandblasted precast columns along with water washed horizontal precast spandrel panels.


Wells Concrete produced and delivered the following precast members:

161 Panels 21 Panels 37 Panels 36 panels 9 Panels
41,000 square feet of insulated panels in sandblast and water wash finish 3,000 square feet of non-insulated panels in sandblast and water wash finish 8,600 square feet of non-insulated grey structural panels 300 lineal feet of precast sills 200 lineal feet of precast columns in sandblast finish

Installed by: Capital City Construction

Drake University – Des Moines, IA

Drake University Basketball Facility
Location: Des Moines, IA
General Contractor: Weitz Construction
Architect: InVision Architecture
Structural Engineer: Raker Rhodes Engineering
Description: Drake University wraps up a state-of-the-art, on-campus facility this fall for the Drake basketball program as part of a comprehensive campaign to the University’s infrastructure.
The 39,000 square foot facility will include two full-size courts  with auxiliary baskets to maximize time and space in the facility for practice. The facility will also feature state-of-the-art locker rooms, video suites, team rooms, and dedicated training facilities.
Wells Concrete provided precast concrete for the project with Invision Architects, Raker Rhodes Engineering, and Weitz Company all of Des Moines, IA. The architectural wall panels will boast a blend of Endicott brick. The brick was selected to compliment the existing structure and the campus architecture. The precast will also be utilized as a means of soil retention where roughly 60 percent of the wall panels will retain as much as 13 feet of the soil; the interior floor will be 13 feet lower than the exterior grade.