This last month was a very interesting one. There were several meetings regarding the upcoming Congress. As you know, it is coming August 30 of this year. We are working with APWA national to get a good agenda for you and it seems to be shaping up nicely. I am hearing about some exciting events that will be held along with and during Congress. There are not only interesting sessions but some nice things for people to do while they are here in Phoenix. I am sure that the attendees will have ample opportunities to visit and absorb some ot the ambiance that is the Southwest. There are attractions for almost any personality that might come to Congress. In other words, I urge you to seriously consider attending part or all of the upcoming Congress event. It is a rare opportunity to experience an international group of Public Works personnel!
Also, this month, we will be focusing on membership. We need to have a new Membership committee chair. I will be contacting several persons to find a new Chair. This year, will be a good time to build our membership and re-energize our activities.
The winning projects, in the APWA competition for this year, have been selected by the Awards committee and we are preparing for a celebration of their efforts this summer. We are going to hold that event in a little different way this year, due to the Congress. More to come on this in upcoming articles.
Since, our chapter has submitted John Trujillo for a Top Ten award, and completing our audit, and with our awards program underway, we have set the table for a PACE award submittal this year. We will be discussing this in the March 18th Board meeting. We will be participating in this effort this year. There are many who deserve credit for their efforts to get this accomplished. Bill Mattingly, Rebecca Timmer, Jeanne Sapon among others have provided contributions to this effort. If we win the PACE award, the credit goes to the ones that have put so much time and effort into getting this accomplished. My thanks goes out to them on behalf of the Board!
That is about it for this month. There will be more, much more, to come soon.
Sincerely, John Hauskins ARIZONA CHAPTER PRESIDENT
Broadway Road Improvements (Sossaman to Hawes)
Owner: City of Mesa Contractor: Blucor Contracting Engineer: Entellus, Inc.
Background Residents and commuters celebrated the completion of the Broadway Road) paving and drainage improvements (between Sossaman and Hawes Road) one month before a 100-year storm hit (September 8, 2014) leaving many parts of the Valley under water. Normally the area residents and commuters would be inconvenienced during a storm event, but the drainage improvements performed as planned and for the first time in over thirty years, Broadway Road between Sossaman Road and Hawes Road was not flooded. Residents were very pleased with the improvements and several residents expressed their contentment with the City.
For twenty plus years, residents of the Fountain of the Sun and Carriage Manor retirement communities, south and north of Broadway Road, respectively have been adversely impacted during rain events. Broadway Road was originally constructed to Maricopa County rural design standards and included an inverted crown. Conveying stormwater down the center of the street became a liability to the City as this did not meet current standards and required placing signs and barricades to warn travelers of the danger prior to or during storm events. During large storm events, access to Broadway Road was restricted requiring alternate access for residents and emergency vehicles.
As east Mesa has continued to grow, the congestion on Broadway Road also grew particularly at the intersections of Sossaman Road and Hawes Road. The existing asphalt had deteriorated especially along the inverted crown. Access for bicyclists and pedestrians did not meet current City standards. Adjacent properties which were developed to County standards had since been annexed by the City. Many of these properties were served by old, undersized utilities and were on septic systems.
The area was desperate for an upgrade to provide capacity and increased safety for its users. The community deserved reliable infrastructure and after years of flooding it was their turn. The corridor also needed to be upgraded to support multimodal uses and other specific needs of the communities. Mesa handled this with an intense Public and local neighborhood dialog that resulted in the excellent service and infrastructure that Mesa is known for. View Photos >
Project Improvements The project included an initial study phase to evaluate the regional drainage and necessary roadway improvements. Upon completion of the study phase, the project moved forward with final design. Design improvements included:
Roadway widening to include bicycle lanes throughout the corridor
Increased capacity at major intersections with additional turn lanes and through lanes
Drainage improvements, including storm drain and open channel infrastructure
Addition of a bike lanes
Upgraded ADA compliance
New traffic signals
Upgraded water and sewer infrastructure
Upgraded dry utilities
Enhanced landscaping and irrigation
New masonry screen walls along adjacent properties
Key Features Geometric Alignment The roadway alignment detailed in the Design Concept Report given to Entellus, required significant right-of-way (ROW) acquisition; the Entellus design team developed an alternate alignment and lane configuration which eliminated the need for new ROW acquisition on 15 parcels. This saved both budget and time, while achieving the desired level of service.
Improved Access The Fountain of the Sun community on the south side of Broadway Road was working with their own consultant to improve the traffic flow through their guarded access off Broadway Road. The City and Entellus coordinated with the HOA and their engineer to seamlessly incorporate their proposed improvements with the proposed roadway improvements.
Drainage System Entellus’ brought to the project an in-depth understanding of the overall drainage infrastructure in this area by virtue of previously completing Mesa’s Storm Drain Master Plan. This allowed Entellus to develop a very economical solution that not only conveyed the flow but took advantage of the existing drainage infrastructure by incorporating it into the drainage solution. Entellus modeled the proposed improvements and was able to adjust the timing and peak flows of the stormwater requiring minimal new infrastructure while achieving the desired protection. This resulted in significant project savings.
Utility Improvements The project included utility upgrades to the water and sewer system. Finding the proper alignment for the new 16-inch waterline and 12-inch sewer line was challenged by the many existing utilities and the need to keep the existing system in service during construction. The conversion of the inverted crown to a closed drainage system created vertical conflicts that needed to be resolved. Entellus designed alignments for the new water and sewer lines that allowed all the utilities to be constructed on the north side of the street, allowed crossings underneath shallow storm drains placed in the center of Broadway Road and provided sewer stubs to all potential and future wastewater customers that currently were being served by septic systems. Perhaps the greatest benefit of this design is that all the utility improvements could be completed on the north side of the monument line of Broadway Road while maintaining traffic on the south side allowing full access to the neighborhoods during construction.
Shallow Drainage Structures Typically, storm drains can be placed below utilities such as water, sewer, gas, cable TV and telephone. In this case, the existing stormwater outfall on Sossaman Road was very shallow but had excess capacity. In order to take advantage of the existing drainage infrastructure, Entellus developed a solution that was compatible with other shallow utilities. The design solution included a shallow box culvert that allowed critical utility crossings of water, sewer and electrical lines where needed. In addition, the roadway widening on Sossaman Road encroached into the existing drainage channel requiring a new box culvert. As an additional design innovation, Entellus incorporated a single curb and gutter into the top of the new box culvert on Sossaman Road where the right turn lane was over the box culvert. The design also included full-lift asphalt pavement above the box culvert to the new curb and gutter. This design proved to be very constructable and allowed for the new turn lane on Sossaman Road to be built on top of the box culvert.
Landscaping Perhaps the greatest challenge on this project, but certainly an item of utmost importance, was the hardscape and landscape that would define the Broadway Road theme. The landscaping theme and density was a constant dialogue between the City of Mesa and its citizens along the corridor. There were many important and sometimes conflicting goals for the landscape improvements. It needed to be unique and reflect the character of the community, but it also needed to be easy to maintain (low water use and low maintenance) and follow City and State standards for plant material use in the ROW. The City and the Fountain of the Sun and Carriage Manor HOAs came to an agreement that the HOAs would maintain the landscaping in exchange for a more lush landscape package to be installed by the City.
The final roadway theme included a medium, lush landscape palate, salvaging existing mature trees and upgraded neighborhood entryways disturbed during construction. The hardscape theme included eight foot masonry screen walls, detached sidewalks, intermittent retaining walls to accommodate grades for utilities and drainage and burying overhead electric utilizing SRP aesthetic funds.
Continuous communication was maintained between the City of Mesa and local HOAs and community, throughout construction. An example of this happened during construction of the eight-foot masonry screen walls on the south side. The neighborhoods to the north noticed how wonderful they looked that they asked City to change/match the proposed walls they were going to receive. Up until that time, there was going to be one type of screen wall for Fountain of the Sun and a different type of screen wall for Carriage Manor (to match the existing stucco walls in place). The City obliged the request, and not only did they provide a nice new eight foot masonry screen walls, they provided a cohesive appearance through the corridor.
In the end, the landscape and hardscape design for Broadway Road met the City’s goals developing a roadway theme to enhance the corridor. As an added benefit, the City enhanced its relationship with the community. Broadway Road now has alternative screen walls, landscaping and an enhanced multimodal serving users and the community during all times.
Conclusion All parties (City of Mesa, Entellus, Blucor and the public) view this improvement project as a success and one to be emulated by others. This project sets the bar for future projects with innovative budgeting and programming, creative engineering, inventive construction sequencing and early and frequent public outreach.
“The effort that went in to this project is truly something that deserves recognition. This area was one that had caused both the residents and the City of Mesa numerous headaches over the years, due to the heavy flooding that would occur when it would rain, causing several road closures every year. Thanks to careful engineering and the dedicated, professional work put in by this group, the flooding problem has been solved, the road has been widened and several other improvements were made. This is not only a tremendous benefit for our residents, but for the City of Mesa as well, as it will save time, money and man hours. This was truly a fantastic effort by everyone involved, making the culmination of more than a decade of work a resounding success.”
Volunteer Sign-up for the APWA International Public Works Congress & Expo to be held at the Phoenix Convention Center from August 30 to September 2 will open up on National’s website in the spring!
The 2015 Congress Volunteers sub-committee is preparing for the big push to fill over 500 volunteer slots needed to make Congress a big success. We have attended the past two Congresses in Chicago and Toronto specifically to observe and learn from those two volunteer committees, and we got some great information and ideas from them. We are currently keeping a list of those who express an interest in volunteering.
Based on past Congress experience, we anticipate these slots will be filled by over 350 individual volunteers, most of whom will come from your organizations. These volunteers will be needed for such assignments as “Congress Concierge” at the event hotels, checking attendees in and out of educational sessions, way finding around the Convention Center, and assisting vendors and visitors on the exposition floor, among other similar assignments. At times there will be as many as 100 volunteers working. So, why would you volunteer, and how do you sign up?
The main benefits of volunteering are easy:
1. You get a chance to give back to the profession and your peers by serving them at the premier public works event!
2. When you sign up for a half-day volunteer slot you will get free admission to Congress for the other half-day. If your agency can’t afford to register multiple employees, look at this as a way to get them all into the event free by volunteering to work for a half-day.
3. And best of all, think about the stylish volunteer shirt you get to wear on your day of service – and it’s yours to keep. WOW!
How do you volunteer:
1. APWA National will post a website in the spring where all volunteers need to complete the volunteer registration form. In the meantime, you can send your name and contact information to either of the Volunteers Sub-committee Co-chairs and we will keep a list of people to notify when the volunteer sign-up site goes live.
2. If you plan to have multiple staff volunteer to get them a chance to experience the event, now would be a good time to start scheduling the timing so everyone isn’t trying to volunteer for the same day. The main days for Congress are Sunday August 30th through Wednesday September 2nd, but we will need some volunteers on Saturday August 29th and Thursday September 3rd as well
If you are interested, contact either of the Volunteer Co-Chairs,
The 2015 Congress Publicity/Exhibit Committee has developed a strategy for promoting Congress at various regional conferences. Members of the committee and/or members of the local/regional associations will attend conferences and meetings to promote Congress by manning a booth, handing out fliers, and answering general questions. If you are planning to attend an upcoming conference or meeting and would like to help us promote Congress, please contact Amanda McGennis firstname.lastname@example.org or Scott Kirchhofer email@example.com
The Committee has acquired some promotional materials for distribution. With the help of David Dancy, APWA Director of Marketing, we have a Save The Date postcard and an Exhibitor Brochure. These promos can be found at the links below and they are free for anyone to print and distribute. Actually printing and distributing these materials is highly encouraged since we are all on the same team and want to promote Congress as much as possible to maximize the number of exhibitors and attendees.
The Committee has also gathered some great brochures that promote Phoenix, The Valley, and Arizona. These brochures have been supplied to us by Janis Thomas, Senior Director – Convention Services/Housing, with the Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau. The brochures will give Congress attendees a lot of options for places to see during their visit. We are also reaching out to the Arizona Office of Tourism and Arizona Highways to have them assist in writing articles that promote Arizona. These articles will be featured in APWA email blasts and the APWA Reporter magazine in an effort to build interest in the 2015 Congress and promote registration.
The 2015 Congress promotional articles featured in the February and March issues of the APWA Reporter can be viewed by clicking on the images.
CALL FOR 2015 SPONSORS
Your Arizona Chapter’s annual operations depend upon donations from our member organizations. Sponsorships pay for the resources required to provide Educational Workshops, the Public Works Leadership Institute, website support, weekly news briefs, monthly newsletters, and much more.
Newsletters are published monthly, posted on the Chapter website and sent electronically to over 1000 recipients in the Public Works field.
Annual Corporate Sponsors’ company logos are prominently displayed at the Chapter Monthly Membership Meeting, Chapter email notices, and on the website.
HDR-Phoenix Announced as “Economic Driver” IMPACT Award Recipient
The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce announced on Monday that HDR is one of eight companies to be honored in its 28th annual IMPACT Awards. The IMPACT Awards honor the accomplishments of businesses and the impact they have on the Valley's business community and economy. This year—as in each of the last three years of the program—the GPCC recognizes two recipients in each of four categories: Community Champion, Economic Driver, Entrepreneurial Excellence, and Response to Adversity. HDR was named the recipient for “Economic Driver” business of the year in the small- to medium-sized category (defined as fewer than 250 employees in Arizona). The 2015 IMPACT Businesses of the Year will be selected from these honorees and announced at a luncheon on Wednesday, May 13.
Selection for the IMPACT Award was not easy. We first had to be nominated and then submit a written application. Once named a finalist, we competed with other companies in a one-hour-long interview with the selection panel about what makes HDR special. Our IMPACT application to the Chamber focused on the incredible economic impact of our projects and highlighted our work partnering with Valley Metro on the light rail, delivering the South Mountain EIS for ADOT that will make the project’s construction possible, and our leadership on other infrastructure and architecture projects, including the ASU ISTB4 building and water/wastewater facilities.
“Being selected as a 2015 IMPACT Award recipient gives HDR’s employee-owners well-deserved recognition for their role developing infrastructure, which is critical to our community’s economic growth and quality of life,” David Skinner said. “We’re delighted to be included in this great list of recognized businesses as well as extremely proud of our hard-working and caring employees. It is both an honor and a privilege to receive this award from the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce.”
Executive Director - Arizona Municipal Water Users Association
The Arizona Municipal Water Users Association (AMWUA) seeks an experienced water professional and manager to serve as its Executive Director. AMWUA is a non--profit corporation established in 1969 with offices located in Phoenix Arizona. AMWUA works on behalf of its members, which are the cities of Avondale, Chandler, Glendale, Goodyear, Mesa, Peoria, Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe and the town of Gilbert. AMWUA’s mission is to protect its members’ ability to provide assured, safe and sustainable water supplies to their communities, and to advocate responsible water stewardship that supports economic prosperity and safeguards Arizona’s water supplies for future generations. Click here for additional information >
New Member Spotlight
Susan Craig, Water Infrastructure Finance Authority (WIFA) of Arizona
Name and Title:Susan Craig, Communications Director
With APWA Since:October 2014
Describe your job responsibilities: My main goal as the Communications Director is making communities aware of the many benefits of funding water infrastructure projects through WIFA and ultimately getting projects funded and on the ground to improve water quality in Arizona. I’m focused on getting WIFA’s low-interest funding out to as many communities as possible so that they can make necessary improvements to their water infrastructure, while saving ratepayers money (2.74% was the average interest rate for governmental entities last year). To advance our agency’s mission, I manage communication activities and work to build relationships with our customers, cities, towns and private water companies. I’m responsible for marketing the agency’s programs and advocating the importance of safe, reliable water through presentations, networking and outreach. I also develop WIFA’s messaging and content for our agency’s publications, website and social media outlets. In addition to my communications role, I work to leverage resources and help Arizona’s rural communities by leading the Rural Water Infrastructure Committee, a volunteer partnership of various organizations who provide loans, grants and technical assistance.
What was your favorite project to work on in the last 10 years? In January 2014, I had the opportunity through WIFA to partner with Dan McNicol, best-selling author and former White House Appointee, on the Dire States Tour, The Drive to Revive America’s Ailing Infrastructure. While driving around in an old rusty 1949 Hudson to symbolize the poor quality of infrastructure in our nation, we toured the City of Buckeye and learned about their water infrastructure projects. I was honored to present on behalf of WIFA at the Dire States Tour event held in Phoenix designed to raise awareness of our nation’s deteriorating water infrastructure. As a result of these efforts, a new video was developed by Case Construction, Water Infrastructure Funding in the Desert, featuring WIFA and the City of Buckeye. I’m now able to use one of the most interesting things I’ve done in my career as a tool for outreach during presentations at conferences and other events.
Where have your travels taken you?: My husband and I love to travel with our six-year old daughter. We’ve been blessed to have traveled to many places - Europe, Central and South America, Australia, New Zealand, and lots of wonderful island destinations. I love experiencing and learning about other cultures and introducing my daughter to different ways of life.
Name one thing not many people know about you:I’m ordained and have officiated eleven wedding ceremonies.
What message would you like to convey to members? It is important for people in this industry, especially those dealing with water and wastewater, to weigh the pros and cons of making an investment to improve infrastructure. Utilities really need to think about the cost of deferred maintenance and how much they might be wasting by paying for water line repairs, leaks, inefficient and aging pumps, and in some cases, catastrophic system failures. For utilities with identified capital improvement needs, now is the time to invest while interest rates are still low.