Central Ceilings, Inc. v. Suffolk Constr. Co., Inc., 2017 Mass App. Lexis 36 (March 29, 2017)

 The Massachusetts State College Building Authority contracted with Suffolk Construction Company (“Suffolk”) to serve as the general contractor for the construction of dormitories at Westfield State University (“the Project”). Suffolk subcontracted with Central Ceilings, Inc. (“Central”) to install interior and exterior framing, drywall, and door frames for the Project.

Central’s work was impeded by Suffolk’s failure to: coordinate the work of other trades; establish proper elevation, column, and control lines; timely and properly coordinate delivery of the door frames; and ensure that the buildings were weather-tight and properly heated. Its workers were forced to repeatedly demobilize from one area and remobilize in another, and to work in the same space and at the same time as other subcontractors, i.e. stacking of trades.  Central’s project manager and other supervisors were forced to coordinate and administrate the remobilizations.  Both the remobilizations and the stacking of trades significantly increased Central’s labor costs.

Continue Reading Massachusetts Appellate Court Holds That No-Damages-for-Delay Clause Does Not Bar Claim for Schedule Compression and Affirms Award of Total Cost Damages

Central Ceilings, Inc. v. Nat’l Amusements, Inc.,
70 Mass. App. Ct. 172, 873 N.E.3d 754 (Sept. 18, 2007)
National Amusements, Inc., entered into a contract with Old Colony Construction Corporation for the construction of National’s cinema theater complex. Old Colony subsequently entered into a subcontract with the plaintiff, Central Ceilings, Inc., for a portion of the construction of the Project. Although delays made meeting the original completion date next to impossible, National stressed to Central its strong desire to have the theatre complex open for the Labor Day weekend. In response, Central made it clear to National that meeting such an aggressive completion date would require it to accelerate the work schedule. In addition, since Old Colony was experiencing cash flow problems and owed Central a substantial sum of money for work already completed, Central demanded assurances from National that it would be paid for its work before it would continue with the accelerated work on the Project. As a result, one of National’s agents orally agreed to pay Old Colony’s obligations to Central. Thereafter, Central completed its work and achieved substantial completion by August 25.
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