CA Constructor CA Constructor Mar-Apr 2012 : Page 22

ASSOCIATION HIGHLIGHTS Santa Clara District Shows Commitment to Community With Longtime Service Project at Camp Via West When AGC of California’s Santa Clara District was looking for a deserving com-munity service organization that would benefit from its members’ expertise, it identified many worthy candidates, but one stood out in particular. That was Camp Costanoan (now Camp Via West), a nonprofit camp in the Cupertino foothills that has served individuals with special needs and disabilities since 1945. The camp is operated by Via Services and has as part of its mission the goal of providing educational, therapeutic and weekend adventures to enable children and adults with special needs and disabili-ties to achieve greater self-sufficiency and lead richer lives. (To learn more about the history and services provided by the pri-vate, nonprofit Via Services, go to www. viaservices.org.) Filling a Need Tackling a Second Project The Santa Clara District board of di-rectors first visited the aging facility in 2007 and immediately knew they wanted to help. “There is a big need for camps like this in the Bay Area,” comments 2011 District Chair Dave Perry, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Central Concrete Supply Company. “We’ve ended up kind of taking this camp under our wing as an ongoing commitment by our chapter.”The board worked with Executive Director Kay While that project served as the first step in the District’s outreach to the Camp Via West, the District realized there was still more to be done to make the court truly usable. Although campers now had a state of the art recreation area, the pathway that would ultimately deliver them to this area was a vertical hike up a rutted road mixed with asphalt and dirt. A handi-capped accessible pathway to this area was Walker to determine where AGC mem-ber services could best assist and initially identified the camp’s Sports Court. While it provides campers a much needed facility to exercise, the court’s asphalt surface was in very poor, nearly unusable condition. Just repairing the surface would not allow many of those in wheelchairs, walkers or other walking supports to use the court. Research suggested a product that would overlay the asphalt and would be both forgiving and would provide a long life with minimal repairs required. A number of AGC Santa Clara District mem-bers, including Hensel Phelps Construc-tion Co., Blach Construction, Rosendin Electric, Robert A. Bothman, and Penhall Company, stepped up to offer significant contributions assisting with resurfacing the existing asphalt and installing the new court and lighting. identified through an adjacent wooded area from the base of the camp up the hill approximately 400 lineal feet. Upgrading this meandering trail would take consid-erable efforts with the county permitting process, civil engineering design, Califor-nia Environmental Quality Act review, and other environmental concerns. Once these hurdles were overcome (re-quiring more than a year of county reviews and approval), the real work began. Hensel Phelps took the lead overseeing the project, while numerous other AGC member companies, individuals and local AGC Student Chapters at San Jose State University (SJSU) and Santa Clara Univer-sity played a role in ultimately bringing the project to fruition. Numerous Companies Pitch In Layout and staking services were per-formed by civil engineering firm Lea Braze Engineers in conjunction with the AGC Student Chapter members from SJSU. They paved the way for AGC member Granite Construction Company to grade and off haul more than 300 cubic yards of dirt and excavation for a small retaining wall. Employees from Blach Construction and Hensel Phelps set all the formwork for this concrete pathway. Central Concrete stepped up to donate concrete materials and formwork, while its sister company, Westside Concrete Materials, contributed numerous other materials needed to com-plete the work. CF&T Pumping delivered the mate-rial that was placed and finished by Dolan Concrete. Penhall Company, Gayle Steel Manufacturing, Lee’s Imperial Welding and Westco Iron were just some of the other firms involved in donating material and labor to bring the project to fruition. “This project was truly a group effort between different members and AGC,” comments 2012 Santa Clara District Chair Seth Boles, Hensel Phelps Construction Co. “Everybody really stepped up and did their share.” For Hensel Phelps, the District’s cur-rent involvement at Camp Via West rep-California Constructor A new concrete pathway now leads to the Sports Court. 22 March/April 2012

Santa Clara District Makes A Difference With Unique Community Service Project

When AGC of California’s Santa Clara District was looking for a deserving community service organization that would benefit from its members’ expertise, it identified many worthy candidates, but one stood out in particular. That was Camp Costanoan (now Camp Via West), a nonprofit camp in the Cupertino foothills that has served individuals with special needs and disabilities since 1945.

The camp is operated by Via Services and has as part of its mission the goal of providing educational, therapeutic and weekend adventures to enable children and adults with special needs and disabilities to achieve greater self-sufficiency and lead richer lives. (To learn more about the history and services provided by the private, nonprofit Via Services, go to www.Viaservices.org.)

Filling a Need

The Santa Clara District board of directors first visited the aging facility in 2007 and immediately knew they wanted to help. “There is a big need for camps like this in the Bay Area,” comments 2011 District Chair Dave Perry, Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Central Concrete Supply Company. “We’ve ended up kind of taking this camp under our wing as an ongoing commitment by our chapter.”The board worked with Executive Director Kay Walker to determine where AGC member services could best assist and initially identified the camp’s Sports Court. While it provides campers a much needed facility to exercise, the court’s asphalt surface was in very poor, nearly unusable condition. Just repairing the surface would not allow many of those in wheelchairs, walkers or other walking supports to use the court.

Research suggested a product that would overlay the asphalt and would be both forgiving and would provide a long life with minimal repairs required. A number of AGC Santa Clara District members, including Hensel Phelps Construction Co., Blach Construction, Rosendin Electric, Robert A. Bothman, and Penhall Company, stepped up to offer significant contributions assisting with resurfacing the existing asphalt and installing the new court and lighting.

Tackling a Second Project

While that project served as the first step in the District’s outreach to the Camp Via West, the District realized there was still more to be done to make the court truly usable. Although campers now had a state of the art recreation area, the pathway that would ultimately deliver them to this area was a vertical hike up a rutted road mixed with asphalt and dirt. A handicapped accessible pathway to this area was identified through an adjacent wooded area from the base of the camp up the hill approximately 400 lineal feet. Upgrading this meandering trail would take considerable efforts with the county permitting process, civil engineering design, California Environmental Quality Act review, and other environmental concerns.

Once these hurdles were overcome (requiring more than a year of county reviews and approval), the real work began.

Hensel Phelps took the lead overseeing the project, while numerous other AGC member companies, individuals and local AGC Student Chapters at San Jose State University (SJSU) and Santa Clara University played a role in ultimately bringing the project to fruition.

Numerous Companies Pitch In

Layout and staking services were performed by civil engineering firm Lea Braze Engineers in conjunction with the AGC Student Chapter members from SJSU. They paved the way for AGC member Granite Construction Company to grade and off haul more than 300 cubic yards of dirt and excavation for a small retaining wall.

Employees from Blach Construction and Hensel Phelps set all the formwork for this concrete pathway. Central Concrete stepped up to donate concrete materials and formwork, while its sister company, Westside Concrete Materials, contributed numerous other materials needed to complete the work.

CF&T Pumping delivered the material that was placed and finished by Dolan Concrete. Penhall Company, Gayle Steel Manufacturing, Lee’s Imperial Welding and Westco Iron were just some of the other firms involved in donating material and labor to bring the project to fruition.

“This project was truly a group effort between different members and AGC,” comments 2012 Santa Clara District Chair Seth Boles, Hensel Phelps Construction Co. “Everybody really stepped up and did their share.”

For Hensel Phelps, the District’s current involvement at Camp Via West represents a continuation of its corporate involvement with the camp that traces back approximately 15 years. In fact, Boles was personally involved on a service project Hensel Phelps undertook at the camp in the 1980s, and the company has sponsored annual Saturday work days as far back as that time but more regularly over the past four years.

“There are so many things that need to be done that there is something for everybody,” Boles comments. “Whether it’s going up there and raking, or painting trim on a house, or screwing handrail to a post for a path we fixed up, getting involved in something like this can be a pretty significant and powerful experience, even if it’s just for four hours one day during the course of a year.”

It was during just such a Saturday work day organized by Hensel Phelps this fall that another project was accomplished: repairing an aging wood rail system on another adjacent trail used by more mobile campers. Many employees of Hensel Phelps along with students from the SJSU Student Chapter and others turned out to repair nearly 4,000 lineal feet of rail.

Donations Make Project Possible

The sport court is now accessible to all the campers and can be used year round since the trail no longer erodes once the rainy season begins. Because so much of the material and most of the labor were donated, AGC’s Santa Clara District completed this project at a cost of less than $50,000 – just a fraction of the estimated $400,000 it would have cost Via Services had the work been contracted out. The project was completed just in time for the camp to open up for many eager campers this past summer of 2011.

“It’s pretty gratifying for our membership to be able to contribute like this and help this camp continue to service the kids that need it,” comments Perry. “It’s definitely time well spent by all of us. It also provided a great opportunity for the student chapters that we support to get involved and see that their time and efforts, both as student chapters and AGC members, really can go toward a good cause.”

During the course of the more than three-year journey that has defined this community service project, AGC members have also forged both personal and professional alliances that will no doubt be utilized to benefit future projects at the camp for many years to come. And they are not done yet; the Santa Clara District has already identified additional projects that it expects to tackle for Camp Via West in the year ahead.

This March, AGC of America will recognize the project with its “AGC in the Community” award during the National AGC Convention in Honolulu, HI. The award, presented by AGC Charities, Inc., will be given during the Opening General Convention Session on March 14, 2012.

Read the full article at http://www.mlppubsonline.com/article/Santa+Clara+District+Makes+A+Difference+With+Unique+Community+Service+Project/991045/102542/article.html.

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