APWA AZ Newsletter 2016 August

APWA AZ Newsletter 2016 August


 AUGUST 2016

In this issue

President's Message
Feature Article
Member News
Industry News

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2016 Newsletter Sponsors


August 10, 2016
2016 Statewide Conference
Hilton Tucson El Conquistador
More Info >

September 13, 2016

Prescott Valley Group  Luncheon

StoneRidge Country Club
More Info >

September 21, 2016
Phoenix Country Club
More Info >

September 21, 2016
APWA September Luncheon
Phoenix Country Club
More Info >


August has arrived!!  June and July, our hottest months, are finally past us now. Summer is nearly over, and those of us who have lived in Arizona for a while, wait patiently for mid-September knowing the rest of the year of great weather is on its way. Just a thought to hold you over for a few more weeks.

August is also a special month for APWA, this is the month we celebrate our annual Statewide and National conferences. (National PWX is August 28 - 31 in Minnesota) Our annual conference is the time to gather together and catch up with what is new in our industry, meet with friends, especially those we don’t see often, and celebrate our accomplishments. Besides talking about the business of public works, it is a time to celebrate our peers through the presentation of awards, enjoying dinner and drinks, and laughing and learning a bit more about one another. The best part about what we do is the relationships we make. These relationships are long lasting and the real value in what we accomplish.

For our Feature Article in this issue, we will spotlight some upcoming highlights of the statewide conference, the program; speakers; fun events, and more. The conference dates are Wed, August 10 thru Friday August 12 at the Hilton El Conquistador in Tucson. If you are not yet registered, please consider attending, even for just one day. You won’t want to miss this one. 

On-line registration is open until August 10 at   https://azapwa2016conference.com/registrationfees/

Loretta Flick


2016 Arizona Chapter APWA Statewide Conference Coming Soon

The 2016 Arizona Chapter APWA Statewide Conference is just weeks away. It will be held August 10-12, 2016 at the Hilton El Conquistador in Tucson, Arizona. This year will be an exciting mix of education, networking, and fun. Please join us as we celebrate APWA Arizona.

Below are a few of the highlights:


  • Opening Session - Grady Gammage Jr. will speak on his book The Future of the Suburban City: Lessons from Sustaining Phoenix
  • APWA National - Andrea Eales will discuss Public Works involvement in Government Affairs.
  • Closing Session - John Moffatt, Pima County Office of Economic Development, will speak on Public Infrastructure Jumpstarting the Economy in Southern Arizona
  • The conference schedule can be downloaded at https://azapwa2016conference.com/conference-schedule/

Operations Focused Sessions (look for this symbol on the program )

  • Learn about Best Management Practices
  • Earn professional development hours
  • Visit vendor booths displaying new trends

Awards Presentation   

  • Recognize three Arizona APWA National Winners
  • Outstanding Public Works Employee of the year
  • Arizona Projects of the Year

Fun Events

  • Opening reception followed by Poker Night
  • Thursday Fun Night – Dueling Pianos, the most fun you can have with pianos!
  • Prize drawing at every break time, and a grand prize drawing


  • Maximize your time by prescheduling meetings with individuals around the conference schedule
  • Visit the exhibit area and attend sessions to develop new relationships
  • Utilize conference and hotel space for impromptu meetings

Registration includes all meals and events and is open until August 10, 2016 at https://azapwa2016conference.com/registrationfees/.

We hope to see you there!



2016 Arizona Statewide Conference
August 10-12, 2016
Hilton El Conquistador

Tucson, AZ
















Name and Title: Marsha Miller, President of ReachOUT Communications

With APWA Since: May 2016

Describe your job responsibilities: Certified as a public participation specialist by the International Association for Public Participation, I offer 21 years of experience in public involvement, outreach, and information, marketing strategy, building presentations for public audiences, design of communication materials, and online and video strategy creation. My strength is being the liaison between an agency and affected constituents, establishing an important connection to gain understanding, patience, solutions, and acceptance for transportation, water/wastewater, parks, transit, and utility projects.

What was your favorite project to work on in the last 10 years? MCDOT conducted an archaeological investigation at the Pozos de Sonoqui Hohokam site along the Riggs Road alignment. Along with the team, I helped prepare a video of the history of the Hohokam, and held a dignitary and public event with a site tour of the excavations. It was a very educational and fun project!

Where have your travels taken you?: I’ve traveled to Canada, England, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, Hungary, Argentina, and looking forward to New Zealand in 2016.

Name one thing not many people know about you: One summer during college at NAU, while working as a camp counselor at the ORME School and Camp, I rode in the Prescott Grand Entry Parade for the Fourth of July Rodeo.


Kurt BreiPublic Works MgrPima County Transportation
Mark J. Guatney, PESenior Environmental EngineerNinyo & Moore
Barrett B. JurgemeyerSr Civil EngineerCity of Tempe
Roger McCormickProject EngineerYavapai County Public Works
Angela NewtonPrincipalNewton Environmental Consulting LLC
Lori RichardsonBusiness Development ManagerC&S Engineers, Inc.



Horse Mesa Dam Rock Debris Talus Stabilization for Salt River Project

Submitted by Jeanne Sapon, DBA Construction

The Horse Mesa Dam Rock Debris Talus Stabilization project required stabilization of a large, migrating rock-fall debris talus deposit located in extremely remote terrain at Salt River Project’s Horse Mesa Dam. This emergency action of stabilizing the deposit was required to establish and maintain safe and reliable access to the dam and eliminate constant road clearing maintenance costs. The deposit was approximately 200-feet wide across the bottom and over 100-feet high, existing at a near equilibrium slope of ±1:1.

The DBA team developed a highly detailed execution plan for stabilization of the deposit to allow construction to proceed safely while using methods to complete the complex project. These methods allowed DBA to:

  • Control natural movement of the deposit,
  • Reestablish and protect the roadway,
  • Maintain safe passage,
  • Preserve the environment,
  • Prevent debris from accumulating within the river during construction,
  • Retention of a Registered Geologist on the team to provide geological monitoring
  • Scaling the talus deposit by removing “loose” debris; and
  • Installing a protective mesh drape system over the deposit to reduce the probability of rolling and/or sliding particles during work.

Controlling the Natural Process with Scaling, Slope Protection, and Slope Excavation innovations are what ultimately allowed the construction of the project. A combination of each of these ideas and completing the project one tight section at a time provided SRP with an excellent solution to the slope/rock-fall problems and addressed their budget concerns without sacrificing safety or quality. 

The project was extremely challenging in many ways but some of the more prominent issues included:

  • Remote Location - The location of Horse Mesa Dam is on the Salt River system between Apache and Canyon lakes approximately 43 miles from Phoenix (or 56 miles by road) and included a single-lane, winding, mountainous road and across two single-lane bridges.
  • Tight Constraints - The ongoing movement of the slope had already created a situation where getting around the site was precarious for the SRP workers. Movement of large, heavy equipment and the potential for rockfall with large crews decreased the size of the work area.
  • Heavy Equipment Selection - The tight site constraints on this project would have made the use of large equipment slow, cumbersome and ultimately, less efficient. 
  • Mobilization - Two bridges along the Apache Trail between Apache Junction and the forest service road to the dam are single-lane, steel deck bridges. Heavy equipment had to cross these bridges with ADOT’s weight restrictions. This affected choices for equipment use and required them to be “walked” across the bridges on old tires to protect the deck.
  • Rock Crushing Operations - Importing materials would have been problematic considering the remoteness of the project site. The final execution plan included the use of on-site materials to fill the gabion baskets and using other graded materials as backfill behind the gabion basket wall. Rocks/boulders greater than 2’ in diameter were broken down with an 8,000 lb. hammer attached to another excavator which served for multiple operations and saved on limited working space.
  • Slope Protection Operations - Scaling the slope from the upper access road down two-thirds, provided some slope stability. From there, specialty subcontractor Adams Contracting, using ropes and climbing equipment, installed rock anchors and attached the mesh drape to the top of the slope. This provided a strong level of safety protecting crews working below from rockfall. 

Ultimately, the project was completed a week ahead of the original schedule, met SRP’s extremely tight budget, and resulted in project completion with zero accidents and zero quality issues.

To date, the project has been awarded the AGC’s Build Arizona Award, APWA-AZ Chapter Award for the Project of the Year, and the APWA National Award for Project of the Year.

For more information about this project, attend the 9:30 am presentation on Friday at the Statewide conference.

View the 2016 APWA Arizona Board of Directors

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