Robert Tuttle, PE, had recently graduated from Drexel University and was working as a construction inspector when his co-worker asked him, “Wanna move to Pittsburgh?” There was an opportunity to manage the construction of a 44,000-SF Locomotive Maintenance Building (LMB) for Norfolk Southern. Robert’s girlfriend at the time, now wife, was from Pittsburgh, so it made a lot of sense to him. Several months later, he was managing the $12 million project. “It was shocking overnight, but it was the best decision I have ever made,” he said.
Three years later, his work on the LMB facility is coming to a close. “In the beginning, everything was a new experience, so it was all pretty amazing,” he recalled. “You can see dimensions on paper, but until you see all the concrete and steel it’s hard to grasp the size and scale of this project. The building’s foundations have to carry locomotives, so they are pretty enormous compared to a normal building. Imagine a car garage, but scaled up 10 to 15 times greater. The amount of rebar is mind-boggling.”
Concurrent with the completion of the LMB, Robert is now managing the construction of a 12,000-SF Welfare and Material Storage Facility. His ability to communicate and resolve project issues before they arise has positioned him as a trusted leader among the various contractors, designers, and Norfolk Southern personnel. His advice for others in a similar position, “Take chances, take every opportunity you get.”