February 23, 2018
Marketing Proposal Specialist Amelia Garrett.
Marketing Proposal Specialist Amelia Garrett recently joined our office in Fort Worth. A Houston native, Amelia moved to North Texas two years ago.
She has been in the construction industry for almost five years. Amelia studied communications and public relations at Baylor University.
What made you want to work for Sundt?
I have worked for architecture and engineering firms for several years, and I felt gaining more knowledge pertaining to the construction side of the industry would allow me to become a more well-rounded AEC marketer. Plus, Sundt’s culture felt warm and inviting, and I wanted to be part of that. The benefits and the programs employee-owners can participate in don’t hurt either!
How is Sundt different from other places you’ve worked?
The information I am conveying in proposals is slightly different. RFQs in architecture don’t typically contain sections about safety, craft workers or the cleanliness of a jobsite, so right now I am trying to master the content and language of a typical Sundt proposal. Also, I don’t think I have ever worked for a company with more than 2,000 employees, so the size alone is different for me. I will say that the autonomy and trust I feel like I already have at Sundt is not only unique, but extremely comforting. I feel supported and welcomed. While it might take some time with other companies to foster that feeling for their new employees, I felt it instantly here.
What would you call a must-see for a first-time visitor to Fort Worth?
Big tourist attractions in Fort Worth are the Stockyards or Joe T. Garcia’s Mexican restaurant, but I lived here for over a year before I ever made it to that side of town. I say you should go paddleboarding on the Trinity River, walk the trails, go to a concert at Panther Island Pavilion or see a movie at the Coyote Drive-In. Also, there are so many amazing restaurants on Magnolia Street. Endless fun in Fort Worth. Obviously, I love this city.
What’s your favorite book or movie?
I have a hard time picking just one favorite. I read a book called “Attachments” a couple years ago that I still love and refer to often. I have tried to convince my best friends to read it because it was hilarious, sweet and gave me all the feels. Fair warning—it’s about love, so if that’s not your cup of tea, I would read something else. For saps like me though, it was everything I could ever want in a book! I love just about all of Adam Sandler’s older movies like “The Waterboy” and “Billy Madison.” I also love all the Harry Potter movies (and books!) and I absolutely cannot get enough of a good musical. “Moulin Rouge” is ranked high on my list of favorites and lately, I have been obsessed with “The Greatest Showman.”
Where is your dream trip?
ITALY! Florence, Venice, Rome, Milan, I want to see it all. The rich history, beautiful art, stunning landscapes, and what I can only imagine to be incredible food are a few reasons I would love nothing more than to put my life on hold for a few weeks to travel throughout the country. Hopefully, one day I will actually do it!
February 21, 2018
A Mike Gaines event player tees off on the scenic 18th hole at Arizona National in Tucson.
We’re teeing it up for a great cause in Tucson next Friday and everyone is invited to join.
Our company and industry partners support the fight against ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, by holding five golf tournaments and a trap-shooting event at locations across the Southwest. They honor the memory of Mike Gaines, a longtime Sundt employee-owner who died in 2002 from ALS complications. The events, which started with a golf tournament in Tucson in 2001, have raised almost $2 million.
The golf tournament in Tucson is being held at Arizona National Golf Club on March 2. Individual golfers pay $200 and foursomes cost $800. Registration covers golf, range balls and lunch and all proceeds benefit ALS research. Registration starts at 6:30 a.m. and the tournament begins at 7:30 a.m.
For more information on the event, please visit the Sundt Foundation page or contact Aly Gartin at (520) 750-4702. The next Mike Gaines event is March 30 at the Legacy Golf Resort in Phoenix.
February 16, 2018
Our student housing work at UC Santa Cruz is adding a million square feet of space across eight buildings.
We’re adding something to our California resume: the largest student housing project we have undertaken in the state.
We are starting preconstruction on Student Housing West at the University of California, Santa Cruz, a more than $400 million project that includes a million square feet of space across eight buildings. The project will provide 3,000 new beds for upper-division undergraduate, graduate students and students with families. All units will be set up like apartments.
The public-private partnership (P3) is being financed, designed, constructed, operated and maintained through the Capstone Development Partners team. This is one of the first student housing projects in the University of California system using the P3 method. We are also working with Capstone on student housing at the University of the Pacific.
“This project is a significant addition to our building resume in California,” said Sundt Regional Vice President Cody Pearson. “As a higher education student housing builder, Sundt is proud to be part of this transformative project.”
The project will include social amenity spaces, a small market/convenience store, parking, child-care facility, infrastructure and potential pedestrian bridge. As part of its sustainability features, the project will have a wastewater treatment plant. The project also includes redeveloping a parking lot and family student housing complex.
Construction will take two phases; the first group of beds will be finished in August 2021 and everything will be complete by fall 2022.
February 15, 2018
Project Manager Scott Miller was recently named one of the Southwest’s Top Young Construction Professionals by Engineering News-Record, a weekly magazine that provides news, analysis, data and opinion for the construction industry worldwide. The awards are given to people younger than 40 in the architecture, engineering and construction community.
Scott has been an employee-owner with Sundt for 11 years.
What was your first thought when you learned you won the award?
I appreciated the acknowledgment knowing a lot of what I’ve accomplished had more to do with dedication and hard work than innovation and ideas. It’s great to know that a well-respected publication is able to identify people on an individual basis and give them deserved recognition.
What has been your biggest accomplishment (individual or team) since joining Sundt?
It was by far completing the replacement of the runway in Minot, North Dakota. Our project was completed between two winters and we finished nine days early. The runway was shut down and the displaced B-52s were in the air on their way back as we were doing the final sweep of the landing surface. Most of the team worked constantly during the summer to make sure we finished on time.
How open has Sundt been to allowing young professionals to bring their ideas to the table?
Sundt and our leadership have always been open to allowing people at any level in the company to bring a new idea forward. They also let those who bring a new idea drive it to success to give people a sense of ownership in what they’ve developed.
How important is the role being played by technology in both the preconstruction and construction phases?
It becomes more important every day as we discover more efficient ways of doing things and our clients expect more from us than just a finished product. Technology helps keep us on pace with our competitors and streamline tasks that can drain countless hours from our employees’ workday.
What do you see in your future as a Sundt employee-owner?
I expect my role to keep expanding as I gain more experience managing projects and larger teams. I believe others feel the same way, which will allow me to be satisfied with what I accomplish throughout the remainder of my career.
A team from Sacramento State won our concrete problem competition.
It’s a competition that has enabled us to find some of the best young talent in construction. It’s important enough for us to sponsor for eight consecutive years and our Chief Operating Officer attends to meet with dozens of university students.
This past weekend, a team of Sundt employee-owners participated in the Associated Schools of Construction’s (ASC) Regions 6 & 7 competition. ASC is the professional association focused on the development and advancement of construction education, and we are one of only two contractors who sponsor the event at the Platinum Level. As part of our sponsorship, each year Sundt submits a concrete “problem” for the participating teams to solve. This year’s competition included teams from 13 universities.
Solving the Sundt-provided problem required teams to provide a complete execution plan – including scope, cost, schedule, logistics and safety recognition – for the structural concrete components of a high-rise hotel tower in the Southwest. We awarded bonus points for identifying and providing solutions for complexities within the project.
The students had 12 hours to produce a quantity take-off, budget and safety recognition plan, and drew numbers to determine the order in which they would present the rest of their plan (schedule, logistics, execution strategy and risk analysis) the next day. Teams could have six members working on the problem and three alternates. The final six had to be selected prior to the problem presentation meeting on the first morning.
Sacramento State won the competition with an all-around impressive performance and by creating a safety recognition plan that was detailed, affordable and effective.
“It was something we would implement on our own projects,” said Project Executive Chandra Reilly, one of Sundt’s representatives at the conference in Sparks/Reno, Nevada.
Five of the top six teams had scores within one point of each other, and only a tenth of a point separated our second- and third-place finishers, Arizona State and Virginia Tech.
The advantages of self-performing concrete, which include control of cost, quality and schedule, benefit every division of our company, and we wanted to make sure our panel reflected a diverse set of perspectives. To that end, our problem creation team and judging panel consisted of employee-owners from concrete, building and transportation.
“We have committed to giving detailed feedback to all the teams so they can grow and build off this experience for future competitions and their careers,” Chandra said.
Our Concrete Division has a long history of emphasizing safety on the jobsite. As a company, we have won the Associated General Contractors of America Grand Award twice, an achievement which left a strong impression on some of the more than 1,400 students who attended the competition from campuses across the nation.
“We had several students compliment us on the way we addressed safety at our company, to the point where they said that even though they already had several full-time job offers they’d still like to talk to us, because it struck such a strong chord with them,” Chandra said.