The RBA Group was selected by NJDOT to help define the New Jersey portions of the September 11th National Memorial Trail. The Trail is a 1,300-mile commemorative trail linking the National September 11 Memorial in New York City, the Pentagon Memorial and the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, PA. The Trail is envisioned as a multi-use corridor for hiking and bicycling and features an accompanying back-road motor route for driving, motorcycling and public and tour transportation.
The September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance will celebrate the creation of a continuous route with an inaugural bicycle ride from western Pennsylvania to New York City beginning on September 10, 2015. Michael Dannemiller, a Principal Engineer at The RBA Group, will volunteer his time to lead the ride from Morristown to Ground Zero on Monday, September 21st.
The ride began at the Great Allegheny Passage, Berlin, PA, joined commemorative events on September 11 at the Flight 93 National Memorial, and then continued across Pennsylvania and New Jersey making numerous informational stops before concluding at the National September 11 Memorial in New York City on September 21st.
David Brickley, President of the September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance said, “This will be an historic ride to inaugurate the September 11th National Memorial Trail, a unique tribute to those who so tragically perished on September 11, 2001. The Trail serves as a symbol of the resiliency and character of the communities in which the victims and their families lived and worked. It also has been designed to link historic points of interest along the route where these fundamental traits of American character have shone throughout our history.”
Eric Brenner, September 11th National Trail Alliance board member and chairman of the Maryland Bicycle /Pedestrian Advisory Committee, said: “I’m honored to be leading this inaugural bike ride, knowing how many others will enjoy and learn from this route in the years ahead.”
RBA Group – New York, a provider of professional and technical engineering and consulting solutions, announced today that it was selected to perform construction inspection services by the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) as part of a design-build team lead by John P. Picone, Inc. to remove and replace the deficient bridge along NY Route 110 over Route 27 (Sunrise Highway) for $1.4 million. This contract was won by the infrastructure construction services team at The RBA Group. The aluminum bridge will be replaced with a new structure, including new foundations, and will be designed and constructed within the existing right-of-way (ROW) according to current standards requiring a minimum vertical clearance of 14 feet 6 inches.
Project Manager Liam Madden of RBA’s NYC construction services group, explained, “The bridge currently carries two through lanes both northbound and southbound, in addition to a weaving lane in each direction for entering traffic. Our team’s design widens the bridge to accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists, reconstructs the approach pavements, and connects the on and off ramps, without any ROW taking.”
“NYSDOT has been a great client of ours for decades,” added David Lapping, PTP, President of RBA. “Together, we have worked on new highway and bridge construction projects, rehabilitated and retrofitted existing bridge projects, and made improvements to the paving, median barriers, sound barriers, drainage, toll booth plazas, and landscaping that make New York’s roads safer, more sustainable, and more beautiful.”
The New York State Department of Transportation’s mission is to ensure its customers have a safe, efficient, balanced and environmentally sound transportation system. In 1967 NYSDOT was established to deal with the State’s complex transportation system and the need to coordinate the development of transportation with each mode serving its best purpose. Today, NYSDOT transportation network includes: a state and local highway system that annually handles over 130 billion vehicle miles and encompasses more than 113,000 highway miles and more than 17,400 bridges; an extensive 3,500-mile rail network over which 68 million tons of equipment, raw materials, manufactured goods and produce are shipped each year; 485 public and private aviation facilities through which more than 80 million people travel each year; over 130 public transit operators, serving more than 80 million passengers each day; and 12 major public and private ports.
RBA Group – New York, a provider of professional and technical engineering and consulting solutions, announced today that it was recently awarded a contract for more than $10 million for the siting and design of right-of-way green infrastructure practices throughout 1,561 acres of Bayside, Queens, New York. The contract was won by the infrastructure and environmental services team at The RBA Group and is one of several green infrastructure projects awarded to RBA under the city-wide NYCDEP green infrastructure program. The project includes a comprehensive site selection process, with site investigations, historical data analysis, surface and subsurface drainage analysis, geotechnical investigation, site survey, and structural analysis followed by green infrastructure design and construction management support services.
David Lapping, PTP, President of RBA, and Linda Reardon, PE, Senior Vice President and Director of New York City, Long Island, Connecticut and Pennsylvania Operations at RBA, added, “This is a great opportunity for us to expand our growing Green Infrastructure practice in New York City and we hope it will be a springboard towards generating additional opportunities in other geographic markets.”
“The City’s Green Infrastructure program matches our philosophy of incorporating sustainable strategies into all of our design projects. In particular, this project will help mitigate combined sewer overflows by capturing and infiltrating stormwater before it enters the combined sewer system, reducing the amount of traditional grey infrastructure required and simultaneously greening the City in which we work and live,” said David Ksyniak, PE, Project Manager at RBA.
The New York City Department of Design and Construction (NYCDDC) is the City’s primary capital construction project manager with a portfolio valued at $10 billion. NYCDDC frequently partners with other city agencies such as the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) to achieve its goal of providing New Yorkers with buildings and services that are socially responsible, progressively designed, and environmentally sound. Over the last decade, NYCDDC’s staff of 1,200 has completed more than 745 miles of new roadway, 735 miles of water mains, 588 miles of storm and sanitary sewers, and 42,000 sidewalk pedestrian ramp installations in all five boroughs. To learn more about NYCDDC and NYCDEP, visit www.NYC.gov.
In conjunction with David Lapping’s recent promotion to President of The RBA Group, Linda Reardon, PE, has been promoted to the position of Director of RBA’s New York City, Long Island, Connecticut and Pennsylvania operations, effective immediately. Linda has been with RBA since 1988 and previously oversaw engineering for the Company’s New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut offices. Dave Lapping will continue to support Linda’s efforts with longstanding clients in Long Island and Connecticut and Linda will continue to work with clients on existing urban infrastructure, traffic safety and urban design projects.
Since the acquisition of The RBA Group last month, the transition of RBA into the NV5 organization is well underway and moving smoothly. Neil Bernstein, the current President of RBA will remain with the company until the end of 2015 to ensure that the transition is completed by year end. Since Neil plans to begin retirement by the end of the year, David Lapping, Senior Vice President and Director of New York, Connecticut and Philadelphia operations of RBA, will be promoted to President of RBA effective immediately. Neil will work closely with Dave to help him to move into the top position at RBA and fully support the transition of RBA into NV5. Regarding his promotion, David Lapping said, “I am honored and excited to serve as President of RBA and look forward to working with NV5 to grow our firm and expand the opportunities for our staff and our clients.”
The Board of Directors is pleased to announce that effective July 1, 2015 we have joined NV5 Holdings, Inc. (ENR #124) a publicly traded professional and technical engineering and consulting services corporation, serving public and private sector clients in the infrastructure, energy, construction, real estate and environmental markets. RBA will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of NV5.
NV5 primarily focuses on five business verticals: construction quality assurance, infrastructure, engineering and support services, energy, program management and environmental solutions. The Company operates 29 offices in California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah and Wyoming and is headquartered in Hollywood, Florida.
The Board of Directors and our management team is very excited to join NV5 as a platform for both RBA’s and NV5’s continued expansion into the Northeast market while also expanding NV5’s capabilities in RBA’s additional core services of Civil and Transportation Engineering, Architecture, Environmental, Landscape Architecture, Planning and Construction.
RBA will be the largest part of NV5’s business holdings in the northeast and will be a major contributor to their overall business. By becoming part of NV5, we will be offered the opportunity to accelerate our growth. The interface with other NV5 organizations will also offer us the chance to grow the capabilities of our organization and over the long term, provide our employees with a chance to be part of a strong public company.
Our company structure will largely remain the same with the same management team, offices, client base and key personnel. Neil Bernstein will be reporting directly to Dickerson Wright, PE, Chairman and CEO of NV5.
Article By James Lomuscio of http://www.westportnow.com
UPDATE The Westport Board of Selectmen tonight voted to accept the Downtown Master Plan and to recommend initiating its prioritization and implementation phase.The vote to accept the plan following a presentation in the Town Hall auditorium was two in favor—First Selectman Jim Marpe and Selectman Avi Kaner—and one abstention by Selectman Helen Garten.
She said she was not comfortable with the word “accept,” instead preferring “receive.” A separate vote to recommend initiating the prioritization and implementation phase of the plan was 3-0.
Marpe said acceptance of the plan draft in his mind does not mean “endorsing every element” and that the second resolution regarding implementation was just a guide.
As outlined tonight by Melissa Kane, chair of the Downtown Steering Committee (DSC), the plan’s directives include:
—Reclaim and enhance riverfront access, views and walkways.
—Improve streetscape and landscape attractiveness.
—Enhance and activate public open spaces.
—Enhance pedestrian connections, walkways, and bike paths.
—Enhance connections between key downtown destinations.
—Improve trafic flow and parking management.
Kane said the plan recommends creating an entity, or hiring a person or group to effectively manage and coordinate the implementation process.
“I think without that it’s unlikely that anything else can happen,” she said.
Equally important is that the town “immediately address and potentially completely reorganize the maintenance of downtown,” Kane said.
“This has been an issue for quite some time and should be addressed before we make any capital investments,” she said.
Kane said financing was an important topic of the recommended plan.
“The major funding concept of the Downtown Master Plan is to take advantage of strategic partnerships and not place the burden of improving this part of our infrastructure solely on the taxpayer,” she said.
In her comments on the plan, Garten said she was troubled that there was no figure given for maintenance, not even a ballpark figure.
“To me that’s a red flag because now to mix metaphors, it’s almost like a green light to say we should make new investments when we really don’t have a plan or an expectation or an acknowledgement that new investments require more money,” she said.
Before the meeting, Marpe said he was “very impressed with this final document” of the plan.
“I am looking forward to tonight’s meeting and the presentation by the Downtown Steering Committee and RBA consultants relative to the final version of the Downtown Master Plan,” Marpe said.
“Over a year-and-a-half of hard work has gone into the master planning process along with input from thousands of Westporters who completed the Downtown survey and and who participated in our many different workshops and charettes,” he added.
The DSC is an outgrowth of the Downtown 2020 group launched during the previous administration of First Selectman Gordon Joseloff and chaired by Lou Gagliano.
“I am convinced that the plan reflects the values that Westporters told us were important to them,” said Marpe, “to maintain our small town character, to make downtown more of a place for Westporters to enjoy, to preserve and improve open space and, to complete and improve downtown where needed rather than growing it.”
“It is the master plan that Westport has long needed to help appropriately guide the future direction of an important area of our town over the next decade and beyond,” he added.
Marpe said he was “very impressed with this final document, but also with the way the entire planning effort has proceeded.”
“This approach serves as a model of how complex, major public planning efforts should proceed in order to take a wide variety of data and opinions into consideration,” he said.
Marpe thanked Kane, Town Operations Director Dewey Loselle, who preceded her, and local resident David Lapping, principal of the RBA Group, the Norwalk-based design group that acted as the DSC’s plan consultant.
“Our consultants from the RBA Group, led by Westport resident David Lapping, deserve our deepest thanks as well for their on-going commitment to making this a comprehensive plan and one that points the way to successful implementation,” Marpe said.
Historic Kennett Square, the Borough of Kennett Square and Kennett Township have hired Todd Poole of 4ward Planning and Mark Keener of the RBA Group to study economic development affecting both municipalities. Public involvement will be an integral part of the process to set priorities for where and how the region grows, the continuation of the borough’s revitalization, and the protection of natural, rural and historic heritage.
“Between Historic Kennett Square, Kennett Square, and Kennett Township, we wanted to develop a plan for the future,” Tom Sausen, an Historic Kennett Square board member and chairman of its Economic Development Task Force, said in the release.
Chester County Commissioner Michelle Kichline, who co-chairs VISTA 2025, the county’s economic development initiative, said the study complements the county’s goals. “The focus of the study – to provide technical data, community consensus and the vision needed to responsibly guide Kennett’s future development – will improve coordination between the municipalities, the public, and the business community. It will set priorities for where and how the region grows, while protecting its heritage …”
Kennett Township Manager Lisa M. Moore explained the rationale for Kennett Township’s involvement. “We felt it was important to be part of this study since the township totally surrounds the borough,” she said. “It is extremely important that we have an agreeable vision for the areas that border both municipalities.”
4ward Planning and the RBA Group will focus on seven areas with the most potential for innovative, economic development: the State Street corridor; the Cypress Street corridor; Birch Street from Walnut to Broad streets; Millers Hill, the area on the eastern border between the borough and the township; the Ways Lane area in the township; the former NVF site in the borough; and the area on the west side of Mill Road in the township.
Some of the tasks included in the project include reviewing planning documents germane to the county and the local municipalities; interviewing stakeholders, such as residents, municipal officials, developers, and property and business owners; conducting a comprehensive market analysis of the Kennett region; developing an economic development plan of action; conducting three public meetings to garner public input on the economic development of the region; and reviewing the township and borough’s zoning requirements as they relate to the seven focus areas.
“We have high hopes for this,” Sausen said. “These are areas that have a lot of potential for growth. There needs to be a consensus. And the consultants’ job will be to provide some ideas and get that consensus.”
Washington Street serves as the traditional “Main Street” and center of vibrant activity and commercial success in Hoboken. It is a popular destination with historical character, wide sidewalks, and a bustling restaurant, bar, and retail scene, all within walking distance of neighborhoods and public transit. With all this going for it, what factors would incite a need to “redesign” such a noteworthy street?
The City of Hoboken identified deficiencies in the safety, service, and physical condition of Washington Street. Chiefly, this “main street”, which should accommodate multiple modes of transportation, is dominated by automobile traffic and parking at the expense of pedestrian safety and bicycle accommodation, in conflict with the City’s 2010 “Complete Streets” resolution. Its antiquated traffic signals, designed in a configuration not permitted on New Jersey streets since 1948, epitomize Washington Street’s primary shortcoming: it is outdated and does not conform to current standards for safety, accessibility, and multimodal travel. Additionally, the roadway surface and many of the crosswalks and curb ramps are in disrepair, less than 25% of the trees along this 1.3 mile street are in good condition, all stormwater drains to the City’s combined sewer and stormwater system, and poor street lighting contributes to glare and low visibility. All of these factors contribute to a lack of economic growth.
The contradiction between Washington Street’s prosperous charm and obsolete structure informs the principal challenge of this design project. How can a historical and successful street transform to meet modern design standards while preserving what made it great in the first place? And how can this process be replicated elsewhere?
As part of a comprehensive approach with extensive community input through open house meetings, exhibits, surveys, and web-based communications, the project identified various “Smart, Green, and Complete” goals for the future of Washington Street.
Subsequently, the project team initiated an extensive design phase that included collaboration among the City of Hoboken, the RBA Group, officials from the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO), various Hoboken stakeholder groups, and the citizens of Hoboken.
The Complete Street Redesign of Washington Street embraces Smart Growth principles and applies them at a range of scales, while advancing the concept of Complete Streets from mobility-focused to the more inclusive “Smart, Green, and Complete.” The project successfully demonstrates how a comprehensive approach, dependent on community input and support, can expound a progressive future in a place treasured for its historical charm. By rethinking, redesigning, and retrofitting existing street space and infrastructure, the Complete Street Redesign of Washington Street enhances mobility and connections, increases walkability, makes sustainable transportation options more comfortable and attractive, encourages vibrant mixed use, improves resiliency to natural hazards, and boosts environmental quality – all with respect to community character and historic features. With each of these accomplishments, the project supports Smart Growth goals to serve and improve the community, the economy, and the environment, equally, with rousing and measurable benefits for generations to come.