Friday, March 29, 2013

ACEC/MO Recognizes SSE at their Annual Awards Banquet

ACEC/MO Recognizes SSE at
Their Annual Awards Banquet
They received the Honor Award for designing the Joplin Athletic Fields.

Project Manager Brad Allbritton with Owner Stan Schultz

KANSAS CITY, MO – Schultz Surveying and Engineering joined over 200 engineers at the annual MO-ACEC awards banquet in Kansas City, Missouri.  They were one of the 26 awardees on hand to be recognized during the ceremony. ACEC President Bruce Wylie commented, “There were many quality projects to evaluate, but I’m sure the judges considered how serious Joplin’s storm damage was and were impressed with how quickly SSE designed the ball fields and oversaw the construction.”

SSE owner Stan Schultz added, “Being selected for the project by FEMA and the USACE was a true honor.  Then to have our project recognized along with other projects from some of the most respected firms in Missouri was a very pleasant surprise.  I’m so proud of all our employees and the work they do to make our company successful.”

SSE won the Honor Award for their work on the Joplin Athletic Fields. Heather Morgan, a landscape architect for the USACE said, “There was a lot of pressure on this project with people saying I need this now, along with me pushing and calling Brad Allbritton on the weekend because SSE had to come out and site plan the project, grade it, do all the permitting and prepare the construction documents at the speed of light. We had a full site with all these existing conditions and SSE had to come up with deliverables that normally take months on end to create, to get earth moving and get everything correct as far as cost estimating.”

On July 13th the USACE contacted C&M Contractors about this project and on July 14th owners Melinda Vaughn and Charlie Bass made their first visit to the site. They were chosen for a design/build negotiated contract by the USACE- Kansas City District and Melinda Vaughn quickly assembled an experienced team including Schultz Surveying and Engineering as well as Ridge Hill Contractors. On July 23rd only nine days later, SSE successfully completed the design which allowed C&M Contractors to successfully negotiate the contract for the temporary athletic fields located at the Joplin South Middle School. These included a baseball, softball, soccer, and a football field. The contracting authority was the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; however, the project was funded by FEMA through their critical infrastructure program as part of the disaster relief effort after the tornado.

Typically, design build contracts are awarded to large construction and engineering firms, but because of the tornado and emergency situation FEMA wanted to find a small business that could begin work immediately. Rarely do small companies like SSE have an opportunity to do this kind of project. SSE owner Stan Schultz said, “Even though we were new to the Hubzone program, working on design build projects is not new to us. Our project managers all understand the importance of doing quality work on projects that have demanding timelines.”

On September 1st the final sod was laid down which completed the project 45 days ahead of schedule. The grading was complete, the grass was growing, the bleachers were in place, and the lights were shining the night the students took the field for the first time. While some may say ball fields are not that important, the folks in Joplin do not agree. Mike Johnson, Director of Maintenance added, “We lost several students in that storm and anything that can help bring some normalcy back into these kids lives is a wonderful thing. What FEMA, the USACE, C&M, SSE and all the workers have done for our school is truly a blessing.”

Stan Schultz and his wife along with Brad Allbritton and his wife attended the ACEC award banquet.  Brad Allbritton accepted the award on behalf of the company and he remarked, “We take great pride in this project, but receiving recognition for helping the students in Joplin get back to a normal life is a very humbling experience.  Your kind words and encouragement are very appreciated by all our employees and the Joplin School District.  Thanks for a wonderful evening.”  

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