Helicopter Aided HVAC & Full Flat Roof Replacement 
Dual project with roofing and heating and air conditioning removal and replacement

Duration: June 2018 though Feb 2019

Property:  The Parker Imperial Condominium Association is a 31-story residential high-rise building located on Boulevard EA, one of the busiest roads in North Bergen, New Jersey on the Palisades overlooking the Hudson River, opposite the Manhattan skyline between 78th & 79th Street.

Issue: Water infiltration through the roof decking penetrating the penthouse unit. In order to access the roof, it was necessary to first remove the heating and air conditioning systems, so the association chose to simultaneously replace the HVAC units and bundle it into one big project.

Project Details: Jesan was the general contractor who planned every aspect. We hired, coordinated and managed subcontractors, and oversaw the whole project. Subcontractors included a mechanical contactor to remove and replace the rooftop HVAC units and fans, a sidewalk bridge contactor, a hoist company, an Aerial Helicopter company, and a roofing contractor to remove and replace the roof.  Jesan Construction self-performed the extensive masonry work that accompanied the project.

The first phase culminated with one very important and meticulously planned day to remove and replace all the rooftop heating and air conditioning units and fans using a helicopter for 45 minutes to perform 8 lifts: 4 up and 4 down.

Preparation for this day and the critical helicopter 45 minutes started 90 days in advance to successfully plan the execution of an elaborate sequence of events within two municipalities: the city of North Bergen and Hudson County.  Jesan obtained permits, and also clearances and signoffs from the FAA, the Board of Freeholders, the Hudson County Police and Sheriff Departments, the North Bergen Police Department to close off pedestrian and vehicle traffic, the NJ Transit Authority to redirect buses, and the Parks and Recreation Department to use the adjacent park as the staging area of all the equipment and flatbed trucks and to close it during the helicopter lifts. Jesan also needed to evacuate and verify the evacuation of the top 2 floors of the building and every resident and parked car within 100 ft of the building, requiring prior sign offs from everyone involved.

Prior to “Helicopter Day,” Jesan installed the sidewalk bridge and all scaffolding on the sidewalk and roof, erected and mounted a hoist to the side of the building to get materials up and down, disconnected all the existing units, freed them up from their bases, and harnessed them in preparation for removal by the helicopter.

After three months of planning, on July 27th the execution ran like clockwork. At 9:00 am roads were closed and all needed equipment showed up. Once Jesan got clearance that everyone was evacuated, all the roads were closed, cars were towed, and the park was secure, the FAA signed off and gave air clearance. Our rooftop “NASCAR” team, a combination of our men and our heating and air conditioning subcontractor staff were prepared to stabilize, properly set & flash the base of the heating and air condition systems at two locations. 

The second phase was a full roof replacement, beginning with physically removing the existing roof, then installing new insulation and TPO roofing; starting on the south side and traversing north. Jesan did all the necessary masonry restoration which included repairs to parapet wall, through wall flashing at the rooftop bulkheads and some brick replacement. We also set and flashed the bulkhead and replaced the door to the roof because it had to be raised to meet the manufacturer’s requirements. Due to navigating an unusual amount of rain days, it took until Feb 2019 to successfully complete the project.

The Jesan Difference:  Our experience with large superstructure projects in Manhattan, where there is limited space to work, enabled us to create processes and employ ways to efficiently remove and supply material to the roof. We also demonstrated our superior capabilities in logistical planning, mobilization of people and project execution.