A new upscale, 5-story condo complex in Flagstaff gave UniSource gas crews an opportunity to provide service to the highest tower they’ve worked on to date.
The new community, The Views at Butler, features natural gas service for each of the 32 luxury units in the high rise in the heart of downtown near Northern Arizona University. UniSource employees are accustomed to providing service to shorter buildings or larger commercial facilities with centralized, ground-level utilities.
“It really was an undertaking,” said Chad Harlan, Gas Field Service Supervisor, adding that the tallest previous similar development was three stories. “We made sure we did it right to ensure safe, secure service.”
Move-ins are planned to begin in October.
Because Flagstaff is mostly landlocked by forest and federal land, the developer decided to build higher on a long-vacant lot in the coveted central part of town. For this development, the contractor requested natural gas appliances on all floors, along with a fireplace and barbecue on the roof. In addition, a retail space with gas service is on the bottom floor, fitting with the urban character of the downtown region.
Ernie Feavel, Vice President of Construction for Miramonte Homes’ Northern Arizona Division, said the developer requested natural gas service because of its reliability and efficiency. Buyers were pleased that natural gas heating and cooking was an option, he said.
“The entire team at UniSource that put this project together was awesome to work with,” Feavel said. “Anytime we had questions during the building process, they were always a phone call away or made a visit to help us through the process. They made it seamless.”
UniSource’s main priority was safety, including for those who may need to access the gas facilities serving every unit. A crew of UniSource service technicians worked on the 36-meter bank to serve the stone-faced complex, while Construction & Maintenance welded the gas lines. Planners worked behind the scenes to “make it happen from paper to meters on the wall.”
Most of Flagstaff’s larger apartment complexes are limited to electric service, as they are geared toward college students. The Views, however, was built for local professionals or out-of-towners who want a second home.
Duncan Jakes, Manager of Gas Operations, praised the work on the project.
“That build is beautiful and a flagship of coordination and cooperation,” Jakes said.