USG’s Parking Garage 2: Sustainability in Parking Garage Construction

Reflecting The Universities at Shady Grove’s (USG) commitment to sustainability, the soon-to-be-completed Parking Garage 2 is the first project in the country to submit an application to the newly established Green Parking Council to be recognized for its sustainable design, technology, construction, and management. 
Located in Rockville, Maryland, the 5-level, 700 space, precast concrete parking structure occupies a strategic corner of the USG campus and, as such, has been carefully placed on this constrained site so that it allows a significant foreground towards the prominent intersection, while using a portion of the existing campus entrance for the vehicular entrance to the first level. The siting also provides ample room along the southern and northern façades for site improvements and landscaping.

Sustainable features include:*
  • Photo voltaic panels mounted on the roof of the garage will generate onsite renewable energy
  • LED lighting with occupancy sensors will be utilized to conserve energy
  • 85% of construction waste will be recycled or reused in the garage
  • 75% of construction materials–along with a large portion of the labor force–will be sourced regionally, saving on fuel emissions
  • 5 stormwater management facilities surround the garage to treat storm runoff
  • Covered bike racks and a bike self-serve station will be included in the facility
  • Fuel efficient vehicle and carpooling spaces will be available to promote ecofriendliness
  • Facilities Management will proactively maintain the structure once construction is complete.
Donley’s is serving USG as the Design/Builder, working with Ayers Saint Gross (architect) and Walker Parking Consultants (structural engineer and parking consultant). The project is right on schedule to open in March 2016.
*To learn more about USG’s Parking Garage 2 sustainable features, please visit USG’s website.

Be the Example

Setting a good example is not a put-on.  It’s simply working safety into your daily routine at home and on the job.  In fact, new employees benefit by seeing operations conducted the safe way. Through observation and via interaction with fellow workers, working safe becomes learned behavior and will eventually become routine.  
Actions will always speak louder than words.  When we let our safety glasses resting on our foreheads rather than in place over our eyes, or when we kick an empty water bottle under a bench rather than pick it up, we’re sending the message that safety doesn’t really matter.      
There’s another angle to setting good examples.  Too often people dress to impress others rather than with a focus on safety.  Always dress for the job as it will give way to the more important and more beneficial images of safety.  Wearing rings, bracelets, and other ornaments is dangerous on a joist as it could get caught by the moving parts of machinery.  Long sleeves, floppy pant legs, and long hair can be hazardous on some jobs as well.  
Accidents are a reality so make personal safety a priority and set an example for others to follow. 

Public Square Update

Walking through downtown Cleveland during these cold winter months can seem bleak.  But the evergreen tree peaking over the fence of Public Square brings life and show just how far construction has come over the past months.  

It was a busy end of summer and fall as Donley’s and other contractors finished installing primary underground utilities for water, power, and communications underneath the square; and the unseasonably warm weather from December has been a great help to Donley’s crews who continue to work hard on the redevelopment of the Square.
Although summer 2016 may seem far off given the cold, winter weather currently encountered in Cleveland, Public Square is still on track for completion before the Republican National Convention. When complete the new square will be full of life and color, and its butterfly-like shape will include a large, open lawn on the northern half, and a speaker’s terrace, a splash zone, and an outdoor café all on the southern half.  

“Things are changing in Cleveland and in Cuyahoga County,” Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish said of the project back in March. “…We have to look like the great city we are…” Public Square’s new look will help transform the rest of Cleveland into a more vibrant community.

Drop In Temperatures Means Taking Extra Care To Work Safe

Prolonged exposure to freezing temperatures can result in health problems.  With the recent drop in temperatures, we need to be especially mindful of the weather, its effects on the body, proper prevention techniques, and treatment of cold related disorders.

Personal Protective Clothing
  • Wear at least three layers of clothing
  1. An outer layer to break wind and allow some ventilation
  2. A middle layer of wool or synthetic fabric to absorb sweat and retain insulation in a damp environment
  3. An inner layer of cotton or synthetic weaves to allow ventilation
  • Pay special attention to protecting feet, hands, face and head.  Up to 40% of body heat can be lost when the head is exposed. 

  • Keep a change of clothing available in case work garments become wet.

Engineering Controls
  • There are a variety of practices to help reduce the risk of cold related injuries.  
  • Use an on-site source of heat
  • Shield work areas from drafty or windy conditions
  • Provide a heated shelter for employees
  • Use thermal insulating material on equipment handles when the temperature drops below freezing

Safe Work Practices
  • Changes in work are sometimes necessary to combat the effects of exceedingly cold weather.
  • Allow a period of adjustment to the cold before embarking on a full work schedule
  • Always permit employees to set their ow pace and take extra breaks when needed
  • Reduce the number of activities performed outdoors
  • Ensure that employees remain hydrated
  • Establish a buddy system for working outdoors
  • Educate employees to the symptoms of cold related stresses such as heavy shivering, uncomfortable coldness, severe fatigue, drowsiness, or euphoria  

Last Beam in Place at UVA Health System’s Education Resource Center

The last beam has been placed during a topping out ceremony for the University of Virginia Health System Education Resource Center (ERC).
This project is a 45,900 sq. ft. multi-functional facility and will house a new outpatient imaging center, pharmacy, office, and simulation suite for medical procedure training. 
Nestled between the Lee Street Parking Garage and the Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center, the ERC will mimic the material palette used for the surrounding buildings, featuring an extensive glass façade, as well as a green roof with terrace access. 
Designed by CO Architects and Train & Partners Architects, this project is seeking LEED Silver certification.
Serving as our joint-venture partner on this project is Mccarthy Building Companies.

Winter Weather Driving

It’s that time of year again when driving can be treacherous.  Black ice is the deadliest danger when driving during the winter and is formed when snow melts and then refreezes.  Since it is almost invisible, many people drive at normal speeds resulting in serious accidents.  Pavement that looks dry but appears darker in color and dull-looking should alert to the presence of black ice.  

Many accidents could be avoided by following these tips for driving safely during snowy and icy conditions.
  • Drive at slower speeds, anticipate stops at traffic lights and intersections, and apply breaks sooner than normal helps ensure accident-free stops.  
  • Leave extra space between vehicles allowing room to maneuver in case something goes wrong.  
  • Always try, if possible, to drive and go out after the snow plows and sanding trucks have had a chance to clear the roads. 
  • Allow extra time to reach your destination during the winter or when the weather is bad.
  • If your car is stuck, DO NOT spin your wheels.  This will only dig the car in deeper.  
  • Turn your wheels from side to side a few times to push snow out of the way.  
  • Use a light touch of gas, to ease your car out.  
  • Use a shovel to clear snow away from the wheels and the underside of the car wheels, to help get traction.   
Remember to always be safe when driving, no matter what season, and in the winter take extra precautions when driving.

Tool Belt Safety

The tool belt is the mark of a tradesman, a hard-working person who knows how to get the job done.  Even if you don’t use one at work, chances are you use a tool belt for home maintenance and renovation work.  Using a tool belt correctly will help ensure safety while working. 

Some major do’s and don’ts are:
Tool Belt DO’s
  • DO choose the right belt assembly to keep implements safe and secure
  • DO make sure the tool belt is made of a sturdy material
  • DO keep tools in correct sized pockets, pouches, and slots
  • DO balance the weight of a tool belt so the weight is equal on each side (the average tool belt should weigh 15-20 pounds)
  • DO guard all sharp tools with scabbards or sheaths
Tool Belt DON’TS
  • DON’T pack around excess supplies causing unnecessary weight
  • DON’T use the tool belt as a safety belt when working from heights
  • DON’T hang tool belt on nails, hooks or other protruding objects
  • DON’T wear belt repeatedly causing chronic discomfort and back problems
Carrying tools on a belt keeps hands free for tasks and work; just always make sure to follow the do’s and don’ts of tool belts!