OBEC welcomes new environmental specialist
April 23, 2013
OBEC is pleased to announce that Andy Burke has joined our Environmental / Permitting team as an environmental specialist! Andy is an Engineering Intern (EI), having passed the FE exam in 2012. He will work from our Eugene office, providing exceptional natural resource, environmental, permitting, and land use assistance on OBEC projects.
Andy has a varied background and experience in the environmental field and comes to OBEC from the Oregon State University Engineering Department. While at OSU, Andy worked as a field assistant for the Department of Fish and Wildlife where, among other projects, he conducted electrofishing fish surveys on the Willamette River between Eugene and Portland.
He attended Gettysburg College, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology, and Oregon State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Biological and Ecological Engineering. Andy was the recipient of the 2011 OSU Edward S. Allen Engineering Merit Scholarship and received Magna Cum Laude honors. Andy also received the 2010 outstanding volunteer of the year award from the Long Tom Watershed Council, where he assisted with the Cutthroat Trout Migration Study.
He is a certified scuba diver, has run 10 marathons, and was finisher of the 2009 Ironman Canada Triathlon.
Welcome to OBEC, Andy!
OBEC secures #1 spot on Oregon Department of Transportation engineering consultant list
April 12, 2013
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) this week announced the results of its architecture and engineering full-service engineering consultant selection, and OBEC Consulting Engineers was awarded the top ranking among a highly competitive pool of 19 proposers.
The Full-Service A&E Price Agreements establish a short list of firms that are eligible to compete for federally funded ODOT and Local Agency transportation projects in Oregon. Securing the top spot reflects OBEC’s enduring dedication to providing high-quality full-service engineering to our clients across the Northwest.
OBEC is excited and humbled to have been ranked so highly by ODOT, especially given the high caliber of competing consultants.
Building on this recent ranking, the opening of our Vancouver, Wash., office, and winning our first major bridge replacement project in Longview, Wash., OBEC looks forward to building new partnerships and continuing our tradition of excellence and innovation as we help our clients successfully address their most pressing transportation and infrastructure concerns.
Oregon City Arch Bridge to receive prestigious award at International Bridge Conference
March 20, 2013
This June in Pittsburgh, PA, the 30th Annual International Bridge Conference Executive Committee will present the Oregon City Arch Bridge with the first-ever Abba G. Lichtenstein Medal. The award is meant to honor "outstanding achievement in bridge engineering demonstrating artistic merit and innovation in the restoration and rehabilitation of bridges of historic or engineering significance."
OBEC is honored to have been the primary designer in the rehabilitation of this structure, which was originally designed by famed Oregon Department of Transportation bridge designer Conde B. McCullough in 1922.
Though the 755-foot-long bridge appears to be a concrete structure, it is actually entirely comprised of structural steel covered with shotcrete, cast-in-place concrete, and other coatings. It is the only bridge in Oregon to be encased in gunite, originally meant to protect it from corrosion due to the sulfur dioxide emissions from paper mills south of the bridge.
OBEC Wins Two Grand Awards at ACEC Oregon's Engineering Excellence 2013!
January 17, 2013
OBEC is honored and excited to announce that two of our projects won Grand Awards at last night's American Council of Engineering Companies (Oregon Chapter) Engineering Excellence Awards dinner. The ACEC Engineering Excellence Awards is a highly competitive process, with architecture, engineering and construction companies all competing for a handful of accolades. OBEC is fortunate to have won two out of six Grand Awards presented at last night's ceremony.
The winning projects are the Chambers Covered Bridge Rehabilitation and Interpretive Center, and the OR 213: I-205 to Redland Road project, also known as the Jughandle Project. OBEC and Kittelson & Associates, Inc. jointly submitted the OR 213 project for consideration.
Located in Cottage Grove, Oregon, the Chambers Covered Bridge is a historic railroad bridge that has been restored from its dilapidated condition into a unique interpretive center and bicycle/pedestrian crossing of the Coast Fork Willamette River. The bridge was restored using as much of the original timber and hardware as possible, and has been celebrated by the community as a historic landmark.
The OR 213 Jughandle Project is a complex and high-profile traffic and safety improvement project on one of the state's most congested corridors, Highway 213. OBEC designed the project using accelerated bridge construction, which consisted of constructing the new bridge off to the side of the project and then sliding it into place over the course of a four-day closure, which avoided the need for months-long traffic delays on this heavily traveled roadway.
We are very thankful to have been honored by the ACEC!
OBEC sponsors covered bridge photography contest
August 16, 2012
Covered bridge enthusiasts and amateur photographers, get your cameras ready — OBEC Consulting Engineers is proud to announce that we're sponsoring a special "Covered Bridges" category of the 2012 Eugene, Cascades & Coast Photo Contest.
What is it?
The annual contest celebrates local photography that captures the essence of what makes Lane County great. Since Lane County has more covered bridges than any other county west of the Mississippi, we want to see the creative ways you can make these iconic structures shine.
What's at stake?
The winner will take home a $100 gift card to spend on photography gear at Dot Dotson's, as well as having their photo featured in our 2013 OBEC calendar, which will go out to more than 900 of our various employees, clients and consultants across the state.
Want to enter?
Click here and start snapping! Entries will be accepted until September 27, 2012.
OBEC is now open for business in Washington state!
July 24, 2012
We are excited to announce our new office as we join the southwest Washington engineering services community to provide high quality engineering, environmental, and surveying services.
As with our existing offices in Lake Oswego, Salem, Eugene, and Medford, Ore., we are strongly committed to building lasting partnerships and providing responsive, customized service.
The new office in downtown Vancouver, Wash. is a long-awaited opportunity for OBEC to broaden our commitment to providing quality services and employment opportunities in the Pacific Northwest
Tim Shell, PE, is the OBEC Vancouver office manager, bringing 26 years of local service and knowledge to the position. As the local OBEC leader, he directs the efforts of a strong team of engineers, environmental specialists, and surveyors licensed in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, and California.
Tim and his team are located at 1111 Main Street, Suite 401 in downtown Vancouver, and they can be contacted at 360.314.2391.
I-5 Willamette River Bridges get profiled for ASPIRE Magazine's latest issue
July 24, 2012
For its Summer 2012 issue, "ASPIRE Magazine" published an article about the exciting and high-profile I-5 Willamette River Bridges in Eugene, Oregon, which have the distinction of being the longest concrete arch spans in Oregon.
Written by OBEC Senior Project Engineer Jim Bollman, PE, who served as Engineer of Record on the project, the article focuses on the structures' innovative design and construction, including information regarding the special-purpose concrete and recycled concrete used in the project.
Additionally, the article notes that while Oregon has a rich history of historic concrete arch bridges, these structures are two of only a few new concrete arch bridges in the state.
While the southbound bridge was completed in September 2011 (and now carries all four lanes of Interstate 5 traffic during construction), the northbound structure is still under construction, with an expected completion date of fall 2013.
The piece is also accompanied by an aesthetics commentary by Frederick Gottemoeller, who praises the structure for it simple and effective aesthetics, noting that "It creates a memorable visual effect by contrasting its precise geometry and extreme transparency with its natural surroundings, and by inserting only those few physical elements required to do the job… Let's hope it becomes a frequently imitated model in the future."
For more information on the I-5 Willamette River Bridges project, see our detailed project writeup.
OBEC launches covered bridge travel blog
June 20, 2012
OBEC is pleased to announce the launch of Truss Love, a new travel and photography blog dedicated to Oregon's iconic covered bridges.
Here at OBEC Consulting Engineers, we're proud to call ourselves the regional leader in covered bridge design and rehabilitation. That's why we're excited to announce that over the coming months, the OBEC marketing team is hitting the road to gather photos of the Oregon covered bridges we have helped to preserve – more than 30 in all – and we'll be documenting the process at Truss Love to share our adventures with the communities that call these iconic structures home.
Click here to visit the blog, or visit www.obec.com/blog.
In addition to our own Truss Love stories, we're looking for interesting and unique insights from people like you. Have a story or photo to share? Send it our way at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we'll post it on Truss Love.
We can't wait to share our adventures with you!
ASPIRE Magazine highlights Delta Ponds Pedestrian Bridge as a "dramatic landmark"
June 18, 2012
For its Spring 2012 issue, "ASPIRE Magazine" published an article about the Delta Ponds Pedestrian Bridge, which crosses the busy Delta Highway in Eugene and provides a much-needed safe crossing of the highway for pedestrians and bicyclists in the area.
Written by OBEC Senior Project Engineer Andy Howe, the article focuses on the cable-stayed structure's innovative design and construction, which utilized precast concrete deck panels supported by high-strength steel rods to maximize cost-efficiency, function, and visual appeal.
The piece is also accompanied by an aesthetics commentary by Frederick Gottemoeller, which praises the "unified appearance" of this "dramatic landmark for the community and the park."
For more information on the Delta Ponds Pedestrian Bridge, see our detailed project writeup.
For the full article in PDF format, click here.
Chambers Covered Bridge earns DJC Top Projects 2012 Award
May 16, 2012
The Daily Journal of Commerce Oregon (DJC) has announced that the Chambers Covered Bridge project in Cottage Grove as its first-place winner in the Renovation $1 Million to $5 Million category of its annual Top Projects awards.
The $1.3 million project salvaged and rehabilitated the former covered railroad bridge and transformed it into a pedestrian/bicycle facility and interpretive center that serves a cultural landmark for the Cottage Grove community.
This has been an exciting project for OBEC to work on, and we are honored that the DJC has selected the Chambers Covered Bridge from a pool of many impressive projects.
Oregon City Project Utilizes Accelerated Bridge Construction
March 27, 2012
This week, construction crews successfully completed an unconventional bridge construction technique known as Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC) on the OR213: I-205 to Redland Road Overcrossing project, also known as the Jughandle Project.
The ABC method of construction involved initially constructing the new bridge next to the existing highway on a temporary foundation. As demonstrated by the video below, Oregon 213 was then closed Thursday evening at the new bridge location, after which the existing earth and asphalt were removed and the new bridge was pulled into place using a hydraulic jacking system. Oregon 213 was reopened late Monday night, four hours earlier than scheduled. It sounds complicated, but crews were able to complete this process quickly over the course of a four-day closure in order to minimize impacts to the traveling public.
This is a relatively new method of bridge construction, and while it's been utilized on a handful of projects in Oregon, it's never been done on a roadway as heavily traveled as Oregon 213, which sees around 65,000 cars and trucks daily.
Located in Oregon City, the project's goal is to bring significant traffic and safety improvements to one of the state's most congested corridors at the intersection of Oregon 213 and Interstate 205.
Now that the new bridge is in place, construction crews will focus on completing the construction of Washington Street, which will be extended under Oregon 213.
Delta Ponds Pedestrian Bridge wins Environmental Excellence Award
March 8, 2012
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has awarded the Delta Ponds Pedestrian Bridge project with a 2011 Environmental Excellence Award for Excellence in Nonmotorized Transportation. Delta Ponds was one of only twelve projects recognized by the FHWA, making this a very exciting award.
In the award letter, FHWA praised the project team for "realizing a shared success in creatively meeting environmental challenges, cultivating enhanced interagency coordination beyond environmental 'business as usual,' and achieving environmental excellence."
See the full list of OBEC's award-winning projects here.
OBEC celebrates our new Lake Oswego office
February 6, 2012
Last week, OBEC welcomed a selection of teaming partners and clients to celebrate the opening of our brand-new Lake Oswego office.
OBEC staff members from our Lake Oswego, Salem and Eugene offices mingled with attendees, who enjoyed a selection of hors d'oeuvres and regional beers and wines.
Our new office is located just across the street from our previous location, at 5000 Meadows Road, Suite 420, and is specially designed to serve our clients with state-of-the-art technology; thoughtful space planning; and large, well-equipped meeting and work areas.
Thank you to everyone who attended the event and helped us celebrate this exciting occasion!
For directions to our new location, click here.