Wendel Opens Additional Office in City of Buffalo

Wendel recently opened a new office in the historic Electric Tower in downtown Buffalo.  Opening a City of Buffalo office is in keeping with Wendel’s philosophy of putting key personnel close to their clients to facilitate communication and quick project response.  With the new city office, Wendel will have a total of seven locations including the main office in Amherst, NY; and regional offices in Long Island, NY; Minneapolis, MN; Phoenix, AZ; Richmond, VA; and Washington, DC.

The Electric Tower, built in1912, is patterned after the Tower of Light from the 1901 Pan American Exposition. The Electric Tower represented the introduction of this new technology which has forever changed our world according to the building’s website www.electrictower.com. Wendel is proud to be a tenant in this historically significant Buffalo building. 

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Moves Up in National and Local RankingsMoves Up in National and Local Rankings

Wendel has placed in the 2012 top firms in the national rankings compiled by Architectural Record and Engineering News Record.

Wendel advances six spots to #175 in the 2012 architectural rankings, and up 130 spots to #323 in the 2012 engineering rankings.

Both publications rank companies according to revenue in the prior year.  Wendel’s listing underscores the scope of the projects designed and engineered by the company that contribute to this ranking.

In addition, Wendel moved to #3 WNY Licensed Engineers and took the #1 spot in architectural staff in the Business First of Buffalo lists.

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Transportation Team Gets Moving!Transportation Team Gets Moving!
In more ways than one, Wendel’s transportation team is on the move.  We have recently expanded our 20+ person staff with the addition of three professional engineers whose high levels of expertise complement our transportation, planning, bridge design and construction observation specialists.  Joining our team are Michael Barrett, Muffett Mauche George and Scott Kinsman.  All are professional engineers with experience in bridge and highway design and more.

To support this expansion and encourage even greater collaboration among the team, we have opened an office in the City of Buffalo, which will be the new home for key employees serving the City, from our water/wastewater, landscape architecture, planning, and transportation teams.  The new office is located in the historic Electric Tower at Washington and Genesee in downtown Buffalo.

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Wendel Provides Energy Relief for New York City SchoolsWendel Provides Energy Relief for New York City Schools

Wendel was recently prequalified by the NYC School Construction Authority (NYCSCA) to provide energy conservation measures and new energy sources for New York City’s public school buildings. 

Four city school projects are currently in the design phase.  Each school presents a unique challenge and the team is hard at work designing optimum solutions. 

One project stands out as a challenge - the PS90 Edna Cohen School in Brooklyn.  This 47-year old school offers the opportunity to reduce energy consumption in the building.  However, this project also addresses the highly controversial issue facing the NYC Board of Education and NYC SCA in connection with PCB ballasts and asbestos wiring in the facility lighting system. 

Senior Wendel Project Manager Henry Perez reports: “We spent 3 months auditing the school to find the best way to save energy and reduce greenhouse gases.  With the design phase underway, the project team now faces additional challenges for the implementation and construction which is anticipated for Winter 2012/2013.”

Wendel will need to confront the issue of phasing environmentally sensitive construction associated with PCB and asbestos abatement in a fully occupied school during the normal school year.  This work will also need to be coordinated by the Wendel engineers to address the construction activities of multiple trades and contract obligations associated with the SCA Project Labor Agreement (PLA) and NYC Department of Buildings.

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New Life for Iconic Greyhound StationNew Life for Iconic Greyhound Station
The Greater Binghamton Transportation Center (GBTC) opened for business in July 2010.  More than 26 years in the making, the GBTC accomplished an important goal of Binghamton’s long-range revitalization plan – to build an intermodal transportation hub that would provide centralized public transportation and serve as the gateway to the city.

The GBTC’s impact was felt almost immediately.  Bus riders traveling to New York City and other areas started flowing through the center which houses three inter-city carriers – Greyhound and Shortline/Coach USA and BC Transit – in one combined location.

Revitalization is taking place as business owners on surrounding streets have painted their buildings and shop fronts, replaced damaged sidewalks and paved parking lots.  The City of Binghamton completely renovated and remade Kennedy Park, which is directly across the street from the historic façade entrance to the facility. Retail shops have opened in the Center and a 1930’s era diner – The Twilight Diner – is now open for business.

Wendel provided architectural design services, landscape architecture, structural engineering, environmental documentation, and construction administration for the project.  Wendel also conducted the site selection study.  Don Gray, vice president of Wendel’s Public Transportation Group says the local community and the Wendel team pushed for the proposed site and for preserving the original 1938 Greyhound Terminal façade, which was successfully incorporated into the overall facility.

“The design has individuals entering through the vintage bus terminal façade and continuing into the modern intermodal facility,” Gray says.  “When they exit the terminal to board the buses, they are facing Prospect Avenue which is a vibrant urban arts community.  So symbolically, people step into the history of Binghamton and then move forward into the future of the city.”

For many inter-city travelers, the new intermodal center is their first impression of Binghamton.  Thanks to the revitalization the GBTC has spurred adjacent to the city’s central business district, that impression will be a positive one. 

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Implementing the Next Generation of Sustainable DesignImplementing the Next Generation of Sustainable Design
Wendel is pleased to announce its partnership with Bucholz McEvoy Architects, an international leader in sustainable design with offices in Berlin and Dublin.  Their definition of sustainable design is durable design that addresses environmental, social and economic issues utilizing a holistic and integrated approach to all building systems.

Each detail of the project is evaluated under these core principles.  This ethos is applied firm-wide to all areas of their design and research.  This collaborative partnership will explore and expand on concepts of energy reduction, elevated public transportation use, human behavior as it relates to energy demand and use of space while continuing to carry out research into construction material technologies for each step of design process.  The goal of this partnership is to develop truly sustainable, beautiful, low energy buildings. 

For more detailed information contact Scott Neal, AIA, LEED AP at sneal@wendelcompanies.com.

Visit Bucholz McEvoy Architects website at bmcea.com.
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Finding Sustainable Energy Efficiency SolutionsFinding Sustainable Energy Efficiency Solutions
Wastewater treatment plants are experiencing extreme challenges related to balancing increasing energy costs while meeting stricter discharge limits.

Wendel has been at the forefront in identifying economically sustainable retrofit programs that help wastewater plants reduce their environmental impact while also saving money.  In addition, many of these solutions have enhanced the performance of these aging facilities.

Wendel has completed work and is now tracking nine wastewater treatment systems that provide sewage treatment for approximately 290,000 residents. 

As construction is completed, Wendel gathers data on the energy savings resulting from the implemented improvements.  These savings are compared with the projected savings from the study phase.  Most of the projects demonstrate significant savings of over $100,000 per year per facility.

More detailed information on these projects can be found in our white paper or you can contact Andrew Casolini, PE at acasolini@wendelcompanies.com.
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Surveying at the Brink of the FallsSurveying at the Brink of the Falls

“What job can you go to every day that has a rainbow?” comments Rich Johnson.  Rich, Crew Chief for Wendel’s survey team, is performing survey work on Luna Island, a small island nestled between the American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls in Niagara Falls, NY.  Wendel is responsible for the survey work for the reconstruction of the pathways and rock walls that will make the island a more attractive and natural site.  Rich also travels to the stone quarry to lay out the rock walls to ensure the stone is cut exactly to fit. Wendel did the initial survey of the island in 2007 and is now working on the construction end of the project providing control, layout and recording and mapping as-built locations.  

“Working two to three feet from the edge of the rushing water is exciting,” says Rich, but the harness and tether give him the security he needs to focus on his work.  “This job has a lot of safety challenges – anyone working within fifteen feet of the water’s edge needs to wear the harness and tether.”  Mac Russell, graphic artist and photographer for Wendel, stood a respectful distance as he captured these photos of Rich as he surveyed near the edge of the Falls.

“I’ve been on this project for two months and we’ll have an active role through next year,” says Rich.  However, when asked if we could get some photos of the island when it ices over this winter, Rich and Mac said they would “take a rain check.”

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