Spotlight Projects

  • KoFusion Restaurant

    Apr 11, 2016

    KoFusion Renovating and constructing labs, classrooms, and offices is common place for F&S’ Construction Services, but it’s not every day the group gets to build a satellite location for one of the most popular restaurants in town. Yet, that’s exactly what Construction Project Coordinator John Grice and his team did when they constructed a KoFusion restaurant in the Illini Union food court.

    Completed almost entirely by F&S Crafts & Trades (Petry Kuhne did the structural framing), the approximately 10,000-square-foot space was a vacated Chinese restaurant when work began in November. When the eatery opened in March, the facility had a whole new façade, new walls, ceilings, floors, counters, work space, wiring, lighting, fixtures, and sprinklers.

    “It’s very clean and high-tech looking and really turned out beautifully,” Grice said. “For a small space, it has lot of really nice features. “

    The F&S team had a very tight construction schedule. It began work Nov. 2 and was required to be done by January 4. F&S met its deadline, but last-minute Champaign-Urbana Pubic Health District requests and slow delivery of owner-supplied equipment delayed the opening of KoFusion until March.

    “We were ready, willing, and able to accommodate any changes to get this thing open,” Grice said. “There were a lot of off-the-cuff fixes that we were able to take care of.”

    Now that F&S’ work is done, Grice said he is looking forward to trying out the new restaurant, but has a piece of advice for would-be-patrons.

    “Get there early or come late, because it’s going to be busy,” he said. “You would not believe the number of students who came by and were looking at the work. There were so many people so anxious for this space to open.”

  • Green GPS Research

    Feb 11, 2016

    A university professor’s GPS research study has come to an end with valuable results, thanks to help from F&S’ Transportation Services.

    In July 2012, Green GPS, a software interface designed by Illinois Associate Professor of Computer Science Tarek Abdelzaher, was installed in several F&S vehicles to collect data on energy consumption in transportation systems. The equipment used the vehicle’s on-board diagnostics system to upload information about engine performance and fuel efficiency to a cellular phone, which then used the data to calculate the most fuel efficient or “green” route.

    “While we never rolled out the originally contemplated full-scale deployment, the small deployment we did have with F&S help was very valuable to our research,” Abdelzaher said. “The project ultimately resulted in an improved ‘GPS navigator’ that finds fuel-efficient routes for vehicles between user-specified end-points. The most fuel-efficient route was often shown to be different from the shortest or fastest route.  Furthermore, the savings when using our navigation software were shown to be better than some of the alternative fuel-saving navigation technologies, like Garmin Eco.”

  • F&S Dumpster Pilot Program

    Oct 26, 2015

     dumpsterF&S knows how much waste is generated on campus in total, but doesn’t know specifically from where it is coming. That could soon change. At the suggestion of the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center, F&S is piloting a program to measure the quantity of trash in individual dumpsters.

    Small, yellow wireless sensors, which can monitor the amount of waste inside, will be attached to the lids of eight dumpsters. With the push of a few computer buttons, Morgan Johnston, F&S director of Sustainability, and Tracy Osby, coordinator of Waste Management, will be able to access real time fill-up measurements right at their desks.

    Armed with the data, F&S hopes to better understand where campus waste is coming from and use the information to improve campus recycling. Illinois currently has an 85%
    diversion rate (how much waste is diverted from the landfill) for solid waste overall, but its municipal rate, which measures waste from campus buildings, is just 31%.

    “We can definitely do better and these numbers will be the core of improving our diversion rate,” Johnston said.  “Our goal is to get municipal waste up to a 45% diversion by FY20.”

    Garbage MonitorThe pilot program also will help F&S determine how else the sensors could be utilized if they were installed in all campus dumpsters. For now, though, the information will only be
    analyzed in terms of recycling.

    “We could target specific buildings that have less recycling and institute programs to change behavior,” Johnston said of the collected data. “An awareness of waste habits in comparison to peers can also make a huge change.”

    Ultimately if the pilot goes well, F&S will seek to identify sources of funding to expand the program to the entire
    campus, she said.