(Via Ho’okele News)
As part of the Hickam Gymnasium’s foyer bathrooms complete makeover, an Air Force apprentice installs cement backer board to the walls of the men’s restroom at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
Story and photo by Sila Manahane
Naval Facilities Engineering Command Hawaii
A maintenance project currently underway that will benefit military personnel, their families and government civilians at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH) is the Hickam Gymnasium renovation of the men and women’s restrooms located in the building’s foyer.
The Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Hawaii Air Force military members from the 647th Civil Engineer Squadron are in the process of rebuilding the lavatories at a cost of $47,000.
The project, originally intended to replace only a few plumbing fixtures, missing tiles and bathroom stall partitions, developed into a multi-month project to revitalize the restrooms into fully functioning and safe spaces. The transformation involves an all-around effort from various trade workers-carpenters, electricians and plumbers.
“During inspection of the lavatories, we realized there was a great deal of damage to the drywall under the tiles,” said Christopher Coover, project work leader.
“The metal studs in the walls were rusted approximately two feet up from the bottom, making the wall structurally unsound. Realizing the amount and variety of modifications to be done in the restrooms, we seized this opportunity to involve our younger Air Force apprentices in the project with the intention to build on and exercise their abilities in their trades,” Coover said.
The new project plan, effective Jan. 6, consists of a complete makeover to the major structural elements of the restrooms. The construction plan requires a number of remedial actions.
These include the removal and replacement of all tile and drywall six feet from the floor and the replacement of all studs in the walls to be covered with
Durarock cement backer board. New ceramic tiles will also be placed throughout the bathrooms. Other upgrades will go toward new bathroom fixtures (toilets, urinals, and sinks) and floor repair throughout both men’s and women’s restrooms.
Additionally, the project involves the installation of new partitions as well as light and electrical fixtures to transform the old space into a serviceable one. For finishing touches, fresh paint will be used throughout, and the entrances and closets will also be changed to coordinate with the rest of the new look.
The lavatory renovations are expected to continue through March.