Upcoming Chapter Events:
Click the links below for more information
SAVE THE DATE!
Town and Gown
Solving Sustainability Issues Together
March 1, 2018,
2017 - 2018 OFFICERS/DIRECTORS
Ken M. Eyre, P.E., Senior Associate
Greeley and Hansen LLC
Steven J. Yob, P.E., County Engineer/Director of Public Works
Henrico County, Virginia
Dawn V. Odom, Planning and Investment Manager
Virginia Department of Transportation
Don Cole, Office Leader
Brown & Caldwell
Amy Linderman, Engineer
Department of Public Works & Environmental Services
Fairfax County, Virginia
Fred Whitley, P.E.
Senior Project Manager,
Newport News, Virginia
Robert K. Bengston, P.E.
Director of Public Works
City of Roanoke, Virginia
David Bradshaw, P.E., Principal
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Harold R. Caples, P.E.
Virginia Department of Transportation
Sherry Earley, P.E.
City of Suffolk, Virginia
Director of Public Works
City of Lynchburg, Virginia
Phillip Koetter, P.E.,
Operations Management Administrator,
Department of Public Works
City of Virginia Beach, Virginia
Scott Smith, P.E.,
Office of Resiliency
City of Norfolk, Virginia
Kelly Mattingly, LEED-AP CRM
Director of Public Works
Town of Blacksburg, VA
James W. Long,
Rummel, Klepper & Kahl, LLP
Ed Crockett, Assistant Director
Department of Public Works
City of Newport News, Virginia
Department of Public Works
City of Newport News, Virginia
Sharyn L. Fox,
Municipal Program Manager
Whitman, Requardt and Associates LLP
Newport News, Virginia
As the year draws to a close, many of us look back on the accomplishments and challenges encountered. We draw from the successes and glean lessons learned from the "bumps in the road" we encounter along the way. With the New Year just around the corner, many of us take time to hit the "re-set" button and set new goals for the New Year. With this busy time with family and friends to celebrate holiday traditions and enjoy fellowship, the Chapter leadership extends good wishes to all our public works colleagues.
At the Chapter level, we are fortunate to have dedicated leaders and members. They are busy planning and conducting numerous opportunities for public works professionals to network and share insights. For instance, Steve Yob, Chapter President-Elect has been busy formulating plans for this year's annual regional conference and equipment show, being held again at the Fredericksburg Expo Center. Read further in the newsletter for more details on the 2018 Fredericksburg WRX. We recently selected WRX as our branded title for this annual gathering.
Some of the recent Chapter activities include:
APWA's Emerging Leaders Academy
Sherry Wright (City of Newport News DPW) and
Lia Rogers (DC DPW) have been selected to participate in APWA's ELA. We will hear about their experiences and the academy in an upcoming Chapter newsletter. Sherry recently completed and received the Certificate of Completion from the Mid-Atlantic Public Works Institute (M-PWI). Lia is presently enrolled in the M-PWI.
Jeff Wilkerson, City of Martinsburg, WV Public Works Director and recent graduate of the Mid-Atlantic Public Works Institute, is developing plans to network and share resources with the leadership of
West Virginia LTAP. The WV LTAP annual winter maintenance conference is being held in Charleston March 20th and 21st. Look for additional details from Jeff.
C. Chapter Past-President
Matt Villareale is pleased to report that
Prince William County and Northern Virginia Community College have partnered to offer heavy equipment operator training at the County landfill. This training will be extended to our APWA Chapter members. More details will be forthcoming, stay tuned.
Hampton Roads Activity Committee hosted a Leadership lunch-n-learn this past October. Many thanks to the Committee for continuing to offer meaningful educational venues.
E. Steve Yob has coordinated another
Public Works Projects Look Aheadeducational forum to be held at Henrico County. Check the Chapter website and the weekly Chapter Works Weekly for additional details.
Mid-Atlantic Public Works Institute's(M-PWI's) next session is set for April 4-6 2018. Work is underway to finalize volunteer instructors and set the agenda for the 3-day program.
We welcome new Steering Committee members
Staci Hopkins-Reynolds, City of Lynchburg, VA DPW, and
Jeff Wilkerson, City of Martinsburg, WV, both recently completed the M-PWI program.
James Jackson, Deputy Director, DC DPW Operations has taken over for me as the M-PWI Curriculum Chair. Kudos to the M-PWI Steering Committee for continuing to facilitate and coordinate our unique collaboration with Virginia Tech University. This is a unique career and workforce development program for our members.
G. The Chapter's
Sustainability Committee is pleased to announce that the
APWA National Sustainability Committee has chosen to hold their annual 3-day winter meeting at George Mason University's (GMU) Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center (PEREC). The meeting will be Feb. 28-March 2. GMU PEREC is located in Woodbridge, VA.
The Chapter's Sustainability Committee is also holding a lunch-n-learn on March 1 at GMU PEREC. The session, titled
"Town and Gown Partnerships: Solving Sustainability Issues Together" features an impressive panel including members of the Chapter and National Sustainability Committees, GMU professor Chris Jones and college students. Member registration details will be released soon so check the Chapter Weekly Works. Event sponsorships are available.
H. Also on March 1, Chapter representatives will be working with Fairfax County leadership and GMU's water quality research team of students and faculty will host a special session on Sewer Science lab and outreach for students from Chantilly High School. This outreach is being held at GMU's Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center (PEREC) in Woodbridge, VA. Special thanks to
James Patteson, Fairfax County Public Works Director and APWA National Sustainability Committee member,
Juan Reyes, Assistant Public Works Director and
Judy Finchman, Outreach Coordinator for stepping up. We will be looking for sponsors hosting the students. Contact me for details.
News of members:
- Reed Fowler, Director of Public Works, City of Newport News was recently recognized (at the Oct. 12th Leadership lunch-n-learn) with APWA's Life membership for his untiring dedication and involvement with APWA and with the Chapter. Reed is a Chapter Past-President. Please join me in congratulating Reed for his APWA Life membership achievement.
- Phil Davenport, Director of Public Works, City of Virginia Beach, has retired and we wish him well in his new "career". Phil is also an APWA Life member.
- Congratulations to Amy Linderman, Fairfax County Stormwater Maintenance, she was chosen to represent the Chapter and Region III, as a member of the National APWA Young Professionals (YP) Committee. We will be learning more from Amy and how YPs are integrated with the public works industry. The National APWA YP Committee will develop and host a content-rich web-page. See more on Amy and her YP colleagues in the December issue of APWA's Reporter.
- Join me in recognizing Deb Oliver,the Chapter newsletter editor, for her dedicated and masterful job of getting the articles proofed and ready for publication. She works for the Prince William County DPW. Thank you Deb for your excellent efforts!
The Chapter Board and leaders met in October to update the
Mid-Atlantic Strategic Plan
, where changes are being made to align with the recently issued National APWA guidelines. Stay tuned for related information through the
Chapter Weekly Works
and other communications from your Chapter leadership.
In closing, be sure to celebrate safely over the holidays, and most important, take time for yourself and enjoy life with family and friends! Wishing you all the best this holiday season, safe travels as you head out to visit family and friends.
APWA Mid-Atlantic Chapter
The APWA Center for Sustainability is Coming to Town
The APWA Center for Sustainability (C4S) has selected the Mid-Atlantic Chapter to host their annual winter meeting February 28-March 2 in Prince William, VA. The C4S delivers resources, education, advocacy, and member engagement for public works professionals to implement environmentally, economically and socially responsible projects and services. The 12 members of the C4S Leadership Group identify and develop tools and best practices to ensure APWA becomes the driving force for sustainability in public works management while growing the next generation of public works leaders with strong sustainability credentials and commitment. The Chapter's Sustainability Committee is excited to host the C4S members from across the country and to learn about current trends and issues from a national perspective.
Environmental sustainability is a community issue and across the country, some of the most innovative sustainability projects are the fruit of partnerships between local governments and academia. The Chapter's Sustainability Committee is joining forces with the C4S to share the good work that is happening in our communities and around the nation with our membership. As a result, the Chapter Lunch & Learn event, "Town and Gown Partnerships: Solving Sustainability Issues Together", will be held Thursday, March 1, 2018, noon - 2p.m. at the George Mason University
Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center (PEREC)
. Panelists will share their experiences and their perspectives on how we can look to one another for creative ways to collaborate and maximize knowledge and capital resources.
The Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center at George Mason University
The PEREC is George Mason University's new environmental research and education facility. It is located at the Belmont Bay development near the mouth of the Occoquan River. The new waterfront building has wet labs for teaching and research, lecture rooms, offices for faculty, graduate students and other researchers, a spatial analysis laboratory, and a library/resource center. Attendees are welcome to join in a tour of the facility after the Lunch & Learn.
Details for the Lunch & Learn can be found under Upcoming Chapter Events in this newsletter.
Prince William Recycles Day Reminds Community That Recycling Matters
Roger LeBlanc, Prince William, VA
Families enjoyed a fall festival with an environmentally conscious twist this week at the annual Prince William Recycles Day celebration. The county landfill was given a seasonal makeover with hay bales, pumpkins and scarecrow decorations welcoming attendees to the event. County employees and local environmental organizations led activities educating the community on why recycling matters and how it can be practiced here in Prince William. A favorite activity was taking the tour of the landfill. The tour bus was full all day driving throughout the landfill giving families a chance to see waste management in action.
"What's humbling to me is that every year we can fill a circus tent with people for an education event about recycling," says Scott MacDonald, the county Recycling Manager, "We had 1,000 people come out last year which speaks to what the community here values."
Every day the average county resident produces 6.3 pounds of trash, and while the county recycles 36% of this waste, there is still a good portion of our landfill trash that could be diverted into recycling. At the current rate the landfill is expected to have capacity to operate until 2065. The county is always looking for new ways to innovate and increase recycling to extend the landfill's lifespan.
Puppeteers from the Good Life Theater performed at the event to encourage children to take responsibility for recycling. The pirate themed show spotlighted Captain Jack Spare Tire who led the audience in singing about the four "
" of waste reduction: "reduce, reuse, repair, and recycle".
Songs highlighted the importance of protecting our home here on earth, and shared tips such as using reusable bags at the grocery store. Boy scouts and girl scouts giggled with delight as Captain Spare Tire made trash walk the plank to land in the recycling bins, with the reminder that trash is actually treasure waiting to be reborn through recycling.
"What I love most is seeing the children lighting up during our performances," says Joe Pipuk who has been doing puppetry for over forty years with his wife Jean Wall. "It is really special to hear stories of kids running home telling their parents they need to find out where they can recycle. That is very gratifying for us."
In the main event tent, beautiful "up-cycled" art pieces were on display with dragons, castles, and masks all made out of 100% reused materials. Local high school aged youth contributed the art pieces. The top contestants were invited to display their art for the public to vote for the best in show. The top winner received a tablet donated by the waste and recycling company, Republic Services.
"Every year we are impressed with the level of art the students bring," says Jennifer Boeder, the Environmental Program Manager for the county, "It's incredible to think this is all made of trash and recycled material. We want to share with the public new ways to look at trash and recycling."
Games, face painting, and good conversation were enjoyed throughout the event at the many booths and stations. Children colored to make their own customized reusable bags, and guests competed to answer recycling trivia questions to win prizes.
"I am glad to see the Prince William Service Authority out here giving out free water bottles," says Sunny Nyhus, an event volunteer who was encouraged to participate by her Environmental Science teacher, "It's important for people to know that drinking our water from the community is better than drinking bottled water which creates unnecessary waste."
Almost 200 of the attendees took the "I Recycle" pledge, committing to pick up the good habits of recycling and buying more products made from recycled content. Those who missed the event can still take the pledge by November 20th at
for the chance to win a $300 gift certificate to REI, donated by Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.
The county will be hosting Prince William Recycles Day again next year on October 13th, 2018. Additional information about Solid Waste Division programs and facilities is available at
The event was made possible by the many sponsors who donated funds, provided food, and led activities. Sponsors included: Fortistar, SWS, American Disposal Services, Republic Services, Davis Industries Inc., Aegis Environmental Inc., Air Water & Soil Laboratories Inc., ARM Group Inc, Ash Britt, Broad Run Construction Waste Recycling, Burke & Herbert Bank, Daniel H Barrett Trucking Inc., ESI Enviro Solutions, Freestate Farms, GBB, Golder Associates, Keep Prince William Beautiful, Madera Farm LLC, MOM's Organic Market,
Patriot Disposal, Prince William Marina, Savers, SCS Engineers, Veolia, and 1-800-Got Junk?
Congratulations to the cities of Richmond and
Virginia Beach, VA!
Both cities had successful
re-accreditation site visits in October. This was Virginia Beach's first and Richmond's third re-accreditation.
Public Works Can Play A Key Role in Situational Assessment of Emergencies
John O'Shea, Safety and Special Projects, Town of Blacksburg, Department of Public Works
Public Works has long been a key partner in the National Incident Management System (NIMS) as Emergency Support (ESF-3). Our colleagues are on the front line with snow removal, debris removal, demolition and a score of other services.
The Commonwealth of Virginia has just recently opened a new State-of-the-Art Situational Awareness Unit. This unit will provide 24-hour-a-day and 7-day-a-week monitoring of all types of emergency events. The Situational Awareness Unit coordinates day-to-day situational assessments, alerts, warnings, resource management, operational planning, reporting and external communications for all of Virginia's state and local emergency response agencies.
This monitoring provides first responders, government agencies, emergency managers with immediate information as emergency incidents as they occur and determine the type of help that is needed. They can connect local, state, federal and private with the available resources to keep citizens safe.
Public Works can play a critical role in the success of the Situational Awareness Unit by sharing information on man-made and natural emergencies as they occur. We can also play a role in sharing resources and assistance for our neighboring jurisdictions.
As an ESF-3 partner in the NIMS organization, Public Works around Virginia assist Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by coordinating and organizing capabilities and resources to facilitate delivery of services, technical assistance, engineering expertise, construction management and other support to prepare for, respond to and recover from a disaster or incident. The U.S. Army of Engineers is the primary coordinator for ESF response.
Typical ESF activities include:
- Conduct pre-incident and post-incident assessments of public works and infrastructure
- Execute emergency contract support for life-saving and life-sustaining service
- Provide technical assistance such as engineering expertise, construction management, contracting and real estate services
- Provide emergency report of damaged public infrastructure and critical facilities
- Implement and manage DHS and FEMA public assistance and other recovery programs
Take-Back Event Nets a Ton of Drugs for Safe Disposal
On Oct. 28, 2017, Fairfax County police stations collected more than 2,600 lbs of medications during
Operation Medicine Cabinet Cleanout
. That's more than a ton of potentially harmful medicines that will be safely disposed of - protecting family members, pets, and water resources. The Department of Public Works and Environmental Services was one the sponsors of the event, which coincided with the federal Drug Enforcement Agency's National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. Wastewater Management Program staff serving on a subcommittee of the county's Opioid Task Force are looking at ways to make it easier for residents to return unused prescriptions and to discourage people from flushing medicine down the toilet.
Mid-Atlantic Public Works Institute Update
Scott A. Smith, PE, LS,
Chairman MPWI Steering Committee
The Mid-Atlantic Public Works Institute (MPWI) started its second cohort of training in September 2017. Session 1 was held September 19-21 at the Hilton Garden Innsbrook in Richmond. We had full capacity of 50 students in this session. After completing the training, we are pleased to announce we have added five new members to our roster of graduates.
- Ed Cahill - Formerly of Buena Vista
- Asbury Parker - City of Annapolis
- Quincy Daniel - City of Hampton
- Bruce Delanko - City of Annapolis
- John Kirtner - City of Christiansburg
Two of the founding members of the steering committee rotated off this summer. We wish to thank Kelly Mattingly and Ken Eyre for their dedication and service in the development and support of this great program. Filling their places, MPWI graduates Staci Hopkins-Reynolds of Lynchburg and Jeff Wilkerson of Martinsburg, WV have joined the steering committee.
Planning for Session II, to be held April 3-5, 2018, is well underway. The steering committee has decided to change the venue to the Marriott Richmond Short Pump (just across the street from where training was held in the past). Registration should open right before Christmas, so please check the Chapter website. Important note: remember the last session sold out so register early.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Scott A. Smith, PE, LS
Cell (757) 805-0310
Mid-Atlantic WRX Conference
Steve Yob, P.E. and Jennifer Caples
Mid-Atlantic WRX Conference:
Building Tomorrow Visioning the Future~We Make it Happen!
We are excited that the Chapter leadership has adopted a new conference brand
Mid- Atlantic WRX Conference
for our annual gathering! I hope you like this change.
And we are about 5 months away from making the 60th Annual APWA Mid Atlantic Conference and Equipment Show take place in Fredericksburg, Virginia from
May 2-3, 2018.
This will be an exciting, information-packed two and a half days that will help you approach problems and challenges in new innovative ways. Hosted at the Fredericksburg Expo Center, the conference will offer a hive of activity for collaboration, education, and networking. The 60th Annual Mid-Atlantic Conference and Equipment Show will assemble many excellent presenters and keynote speakers, giving attendees the opportunity to learn best practices from regional experts. There will also be unique networking and social interactions planned as well as opportunities to explore the Historic City of Fredericksburg.
Would you like to talk to all your friends and colleagues in the industry? Care to watch our expert drivers navigate 65,000-pound trucks through eggs and tennis balls? Is golf your thing? How about a little run in the morning before the event to get your blood pumping on the adjoining Rappahannock River Heritage Trail? Perhaps you're a history buff and wish to take in some of the surrounding battlefields.
All of these things, and more, await you in Fredericksburg. We are planning an excellent show with many more fun and educational adventures so please sign up today.
If you have some ideas on anything you would like to see this year, please send them to
. Please put
in the subject header.
If you have any questions about the trade show or being an exhibitor or sponsor, please contact
at for more info. Exhibitor and sponsor registration is open.
For general questions about the event or being an exhibitor or sponsor please contact
WRX Conference registration is open.
The call for abstracts is underway. To submit your abstract, follow the link
Lodging - We will be using the Hampton Inn and the Homewood Suites Hotels adjoining the convention center. Rates will be $104 and $114 respectively. The live link will be up and running shortly.
Roadeo - As with last year, the convention center has a wonderful expanse of parking lot which will host our roadeo. This is a great event and we will need plenty of volunteers and spectators to help our folks shine on these challenging courses.
You won't want to miss it the
Mid-Atlantic WRX Conference: We make it happen...will you?
Steve Yob is this year's conference chair, Jennifer Caples is assisting with exhibitors and Jennifer Cook is coordinating the event for the Mid-Atlantic Chapter.
Little Green Crushes It at Solid Waste Transfer Station
Matthew Kaiser, information officer, Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services
Fairfax County's I-95 landfill complex has "Big Blue," the machine capable of crushing
20 tons of glass an hour. Quentin Marovelli, I-66 solid waste transfer station complex manager, wants you to meet "Little Green," a smaller machine that is creating awareness about the county's glass recycling efforts. Tradesman Chris Parker operates Little Green. He says he's received lots of questions and positive feedback from residents.
Little Green was installed earlier this year and has already crushed about a ton of glass. The machine reduces glass bottles and jars to pea gravel-size nuggets and fine sand. The larger pieces are attractive and can be used for decorative purposes and landscaping projects. Residents are
using the glass sand to fill bags, which are available near the machine. Other uses are being explored.
It took three months to accumulate the first ton of glass, but the hope is that more residents will bring their glass to the sorting area. Containers are labeled to help sort the glass by color. Single color glass is available in small amounts (producing it is labor intensive), but there is plenty of mixed color glass available.
City of Chesapeake Unveils New CNG Fueling Station
|Pictured (left to right): Michael Bisogno, Director, Office of Fleet Management Services, Commonwealth of Virginia; Alleyn Harned, Executive Director Virginia Clean Cities; George Hrichak Fleet Manager; Gary Parker, Project Manager Clean Energy Corp.; Rick West, Mayor; Barbara Carraway, Treasurer; James Baker, City Manager.
The City of Chesapeake unveiled its first public access fast-fill compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling station at a special "First Fueling" event Wednesday morning, November 29th. Mayor Rick West, Clean Energy's Gary Parker, Virginia Clean Cities Executive Director Alleyn Harned, and Michael Bisogno with the Commonwealth of Virginia's Office of Fleet Management Services, all spoke at the event and participated in the ribbon cutting along with Chesapeake's City Manager James Baker and Fleet Manager George Hrichak.
More than 30% of the City of Chesapeake's fleet is made up of alternative fueled vehicles using CNG, Propane, E85, Electric, Hybrid gasoline/electric, and Hybrid hydraulic/diesel.
Residents and businesses interested in using the CNG station for their vehicles can contact
, (757) 355-0273, to establish a Clean Energy account or they can refill their vehicles using any MasterCard or Visa. The station is located at 305 Executive Blvd. in the Greenbrier area of the City, near Chesapeake City Park.
Energy Projects at Fairfax County's Wastewater Treatment Plant Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Matthew Kaiser, Information Officer, Dept. of Public Works and Environmental Services
In the wastewater treatment business there is no such thing as downtime. As you can imagine, it takes a lot of electricity to keep a wastewater treatment plant running 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Fairfax County's Noman M. Cole, Jr. Pollution Control Plant, in Lorton, Va., treats about 40 million gallons of wastewater every day of the year, and the flow never stops. Nevertheless, plant staff are always looking for ways to reduce energy usage and the associated electric bills.
Reducing energy usage is even more difficult when a facility continues to build capacity
and add new technologies to meet the needs of a growing number of residents and stringent environmental regulations. In Fiscal Year 2014, the plant's new Moving Bed Biofilm Reactor (MBBR) came online. The MBBR removes excess nitrate-nitrogen from wastewater, converting it to a gas and releasing it into the atmosphere instead of sending it downstream where it can negatively impact Pohick Creek, Gunston Cove, and ultimately Chesapeake Bay. While this process helps the plant comply with Virginia Dept. of Environmental Quality's total nitrogen permit, it also uses a lot of electricity.
During the same time period, the plant's water reuse pump station began sending millions of gallons of extensively treated, reclaimed wastewater to customers for use in irrigation and industrial purposes. These new facilities caused a spike in the electricity usage at the plant.
Since then, staff has implemented a number of projects to reduce electricity usage, and they have been very successful. From the peak, they have reduced electrical consumption by 2,175,000 kWh per year - the equivalent of taking 200 households off the grid! Their efforts have reduced the plant's greenhouse gas emissions by about 2.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide per year.
Electricity reduction projects included:
- Optimizing wastewater handling and treatment operating procedures at different stages and areas of the plant while sustaining treatment levels
- Fifteen new electric mixers in the activated sludge tank emit 550 fewer metric tons of greenhouse gases annually, save more than $62,900 in electrical bills, and save 968,000 kwh/year - enough power to run approximately 90 homes for a year.
- Adjusting plant-based wastewater pumping station operations practices to reduce power consumption
- Replacing plant illumination with more efficient lighting
The savings were produced by optimizing operations and replacing aging equipment. Many of the measures didn't require capital investment to implement, and the few that involved upfront costs had relatively short payback times. However, future electricity reduction projects will likely result in additional expenditures. There is one place to find additional energy savings - new capital projects.
For example, the design of the new ultraviolet disinfection system will flatten the grade over which the wastewater travels, thus eliminating the need for a continuously running pump station.
Looking even further ahead, the plant's capital improvement program includes a plan to install solar power to help meet energy needs.
|DPW, MOED and CWEA Celebrate the Successful Completion of the Water Mentoring Program
Chief, Communications and Community Affairs
On November 30,
Baltimore City Department of Public Works (DPW)
the Mayor's Office of Employment Development (MOED)
the Chesapeake Water Environment Association (CWEA), celebrated the successful completion of the 2017 career water mentoring program
by 16 young adults. These young adults now have the skills needed to launch a career and Baltimore has a proven means to fill critical positions in the water industry.
Mayor Catherine E. Pugh delivered remarks congratulating the 2017 Water Mentoring Program Graduates on the completion of this rigorous eight-month program
. She also
announced the rebranding of this ground-breaking City program to Y-H20-the Youth Water Mentoring Program, which will serve as a national model for other cities.
DPW, MOED, and CWEA launched the water mentoring program in January 2015 with the primary goals of educating young adults in Baltimore City about career opportunities in the water industry
, as well as
developing a pipeline of future workers with the right skills to fill entry-level positions in the field.
Environmental Sustainability Team Members "Envision" the Future
Irene Haske, information officer, Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services
Twenty-three Fairfax County employees from the Department of Public Works and Environmental Services, Park Authority, and Vehicle Services were recently trained in Envision, a tool developed by the
Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure
in collaboration with Harvard University's
Program for Sustainable Infrastructure. ISI's website states, "Envision is for infrastructure what LEED is for buildings."
Denise Nelson, P.E., ENV SP, and LEED AP, of the
taught the class at Fairfax County's government center. To date, she has helped 230 professionals in Virginia earn the Envision credential.
"It was an honor to introduce Envision as a tool to support Fairfax County, a leader in the industry with a strong commitment to sustainable infrastructure practices," Denise said. Envision encourages collaboration among departments and stakeholders, provides a common language for transparency, includes metrics for quantifying impacts, and encourages life cycle considerations. "Using Envision will expand the county's procedures for a more holistic and comprehensive approach to meeting community goals," she said.
Including previously trained employees, DPWES now has twenty certified ENV SPs.
Juan Reyes, assistant director, Business Support Services, Fairfax County DPWES, said, "We think Envision can assist us in our quest for a holistic approach to sustainable infrastructure and service provision which is at the heart of our mission to improve quality of life, and protect the health and environment in Fairfax County."
The first step in using Envision is to create a report card or benchmark for recently completed projects. These are rated under Envision's five key categories: quality of life, leadership, resource allocation, natural world, and climate and risk. There are 60 envision subcategories in which rating points are available for credit. Benchmarking projects - or taking a snapshot of projects - is essential to ensure future infrastructure improvement projects are sustainable and resilient.
Once the benchmark evaluation is complete, a summary of the findings includes recommendations for future projects. The recommendations may span all phases of a project, including planning, design and construction. For example, in the planning phase a recommendation may be made to update the capital project rating system; in the design phase a recommendation to incorporate street trees may be made; in the construction phase it may be recommended that only regional materials be used and to maximize the use of recycled products. At that point the process includes applying the recommendations to projects that are already designed but await funding, so changes can be made to a current design before the project goes out to bid.
James Patteson, director, DPWES, said, "I'm excited to get this many folks trained. Each business area is taking a couple of projects through the program next year and then we are going to do a lessons learned review and decide on our next steps from there." The department's Environmental Sustainability Team and newly trained ENV SPs will be working with business areas in the coming months to select projects to evaluate and rate using Envision. The Huntington Levee project, now under construction, has already been formally evaluated using Envision and an application for an award has been submitted to ISI.
Reed Fowler awarded Life Membership in APWA
Reed Fowler, Director of Public Works, City of Newport News, VA, was recently awarded Life Membership in APWA. Reed has been an active APWA member for 30 years. His service to the Chapter has included serving on the Board of Directors for six years, serving as Chapter President in 2008. He has participated in the planning of many Chapter conferences and was instrumental in establishing our Public Works Institute. Reed led his department to APWA Accreditation in 2003, and re-accreditation on the national level, Reed chaired the Accreditation Council. He is highly supportive of employee involvement in our association.
Life Membership is awarded to members who have
- continuous membership for 30 years, or
- continuous membership for 20 years and age 70, or
- continuous membership for 20 years, age 65, and fully retired from active service
Equipment Rodeo Strengthens One Department Philosophy
rene Haske, information officer, Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services
Fairfax County's Department of Public Works and Environmental Services held an
equipment rodeo to bring together employees from various divisions and provide an opportunity for training and networking.
The rodeo featured three competitive events: DriveCam (following distance and reaction time); chemical spills; and winter safety. There were 26 participants and 18 judges, all of whom came from various DPWES divisions. Terry Reese, Solid Waste Management Program, took a trip to Baltimore County to learn how to how to pull it all together.
"This was a fabulous opportunity to meet and work with employees throughout DPWES and with our colleagues in Baltimore County," said Jonathan Murray, Environmental Business Operations Branch Chief, Maintenance and Stormwater Management (MSMD). "We provided training on the types of safety issues that affect everyone in the department. After all, our agencies are not islands. We are one department. One county," he said. "They were committed to the one county concept, and over the years this will make a difference in how we operate. It's sustainable."
Employees who previously met other DPWES employees during stressful times such emergencies, saw the rodeo as an opportunity to network without the tension of emergency situations.
"The training and equipment rodeo brought people together in a fun, competitive environment and will help us massage the red tape during regular business hours when it's necessary to borrow equipment and staff," Jonathan said.
Planning committee members aspire to continue doing the APWA-style equipment rodeo in future years, and some members hope the rodeo can become an annual event. Planning committee members hope the DPWES rodeo winners will be successful at the regional 2018 APWA competition next year, and move forward to win the national competition.
City of Newport News Lee Hall Train Depot Project
The City of Newport News Department of Public Works is helping to bring history back to life! The Lee Hall Train Station Foundation is working to restore a U.S. Army military hospital rail car, the type of rail car that transported thousands of wounded troops to medical facilities on the Virginia Peninsula and beyond. These cars were used to transport troops during conflicts from World War I through the Vietnam era.
Each 85-foot car was a "hospital on wheels" incorporating a completely stocked kitchen, pharmacy unit, finest sterilizing equipment, ice-activated air conditioning and automated heat control devices. The hospital rail cars were most commonly used during World War II when air transportation was limited. By the Korean War, the use of air evacuation had increased, but hospital rail cars still played a critical role in transporting the wounded to medical facilities.
Several of these hospital cars were utilized at Ft. Eustis, and after being decommissioned were stored on the military post. The Foundation received one of the cars; the rusty rail car was in need of restoration. Gary Wilson, Public Works Maintenance Specialist, began working on the project in the spring of 2017. Dean Hawkins, Maintenance Specialist, and Jerry Gambier, Maintenance Mechanic II, have joined in the restoration efforts. The team now works together creating templates, cutting and welding the metal and recreating the rivets. Once the exterior of the car is complete, they will begin restoration on the interior. Work on the car will continue through the end of the year.
The car will be placed at the Depot to serve as a visual reminder of the sacrifice that is given by military personnel in the service of their country.
Fairfax County Hosts Virginia Recycling Association Meeting
Marion Plummer, Recycling Outreach and Education, Solid Waste Management Program
The Virginia Recycling Association (VRA) held their yearly membership meeting and awards presentation at the Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton on Tuesday, October 24. The mee
ting was organized and hosted by the Solid Waste outreach team. Charlie Forbes, chief of the Recycling,
Compliance, and Planning Branch, gave V
RA members a presentation on glass recycling on
a tour of the I-95 landfill complex and its new glass crushing machine.
Pamela Gratton, director of Recycling, Engineering, and Environmental Compliance, was presented with a certificate of appreciation from the VRA for her years of support of the organization and its mission.
Mock Missiles Raise Eyebrows at Fairfax County Landfill Complex
Sonny Poteat, safety analyst, I-95 landfill complex
They'll bring anything to the landfill!
On September 26, our landfill operators were faced with something none of them had
ever experienced: a trailer truck began unloading wooden crates with assorted rockets and multi-payload missiles. Obviously, landfills cannot accept military grade weapons and ordnance of any kind, nor can it accept privately owned firearms and ammunition. So what's the big idea bringing this to the landfill?
Closer inspection revealed these were merely scale models used by weapons manufactures to promote their products at military tradeshows. Mockups, as real looking as they are at first glance, are mostly comprised of plastic, construction-grade lumber, Styrofoam, and a little tin. Only those features the manufacture wants to promote are made to appear real. According to the trash hauler that brought the faux weapons here, the outdated replicas were taking up valuable space in the warehouse and had to go.
In reality, some real small arms ammunition and even an old gun or two have surfaced over the years. It is more common however to find spent large-bore cannon shells, helmets, and other artifacts from previous conflicts our warfighters brought home as mementos.
Our diligent Solid Waste operators are always looking for things which should not be in the waste stream and take the appropriate action to remove them. Should something be deemed suspicious or possible live ordnance, the area is secured and the police bomb squad is called in to handle the situation.
So far, no real military weapons have been found here but we'll keep looking because you never know what's coming to the landfill next. And you thought working at the landfill must be a boring job.
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