Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Career Fair Time



As students begin the new semester at school, we encourage them to look for us at the upcoming career fairs and visit our website for available positions. We look forward to meeting everyone.

Please look for us at one of the upcoming career fairs at the following universities:

September 16, 2014
University of Missouri - Columbia, MO

September 17, 2014
University of Kansas - Lawrence, KS

September 23, 2014
Missouri University of Science and Technology - Rolla, MO

September 24, 2014
Kansas State University - Manhattan, KS

September 30, 2014
University of Nebraska - Lincoln, NE
University of Missouri Kansas City - Kansas City, MO

College students are not the only staff we are looking for, so please visit our careers page to see all of our available opportunities.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Johnson Drive Ribbon Cutting



On Friday, August 15th, the City of Merriam cut the ribbon on the Johnson Drive bridge over Turkey Creek, designed by GBA. 

The 150-foot-long, three-span bridge was a superstructure replacement, necessary to replace old pre-stressed double tee beams that were in poor condition and continuing to deteriorate. GBA’s new design included weathered steel girders, a new bridge deck and aesthetic improvements including brick and stone on the bridge columns, decorative lamp posts with hanging planters and new fencing. The project also added barriers and handrails between the sidewalk and driving lands for added pedestrian safety. 

The bridge was built in phases to accommodate the utility conduits on the bridge and maintain pedestrian access during construction. The bridge was closed to vehicular traffic in an effort to meet the city’s primary goal, which was opening the bridge before the grand opening of the IKEA store near the bridge site. The IKEA store opens Sept. 10.

Construction cost was $1.6 million.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Wind Turbines at Fort Hays State University



Earlier this year, two 2 MW wind turbines were added to the Kansas landscape. Though not particularly unusual for Kansas, the project was noteworthy for Fort Hays State University (FHSU) and the first of its kind for a Kansas university.  GBA was retained to provide electrical engineering services.

The project was not without challenges, including local zoning restrictions that prohibited the turbines locate near campus. Instead, they were situated on a ridge nearly three miles west of campus, in an area of high average wind speeds.  With that site, came the arduous process of boring all associated transmission lines and fiber, which allows for continuous monitoring to ensure optimum performance, to the Akers Energy Center on campus. 

Remarkably, these two wind turbines will account for nearly 97% of energy consumption on campus, saving the University up to $1 million annually.  The project paves the way for future energy efficiency measures, energy storage and additional renewable sources for FHSU.

Check out the finished product, live from the FHSU Wind Farm Camera, at http://fhsuwind.click2stream.com.



Monday, July 28, 2014

Saying Good-bye and Good Luck to Our Summer Interns



Now that our summer interns have had a taste of a 40-hour work week and keeping a time sheet, we wanted to know about their experience at GBA before they return to school. We asked what they learned and what they will take back with them and here’s what they told us.

Name: Grant Brady
Department at GBA: Water Environment
What was your favorite thing(s) about working at GBA?
Post stream restoration inspections and pebble counts in the field.
What stands out about your summer internship that was something you never learned in school?
Robots have videotaped almost all of the Stormwater and wastewater pipes below us.
What was the hardest thing to get used to working this summer at GBA?
Holding my attention span for eight chargeable hours each day.

Name:  Katie Cortis
Department at GBA:   Life Sciences
What was your favorite thing(s) about working at GBA?
1.    My coworkers
2.    Way more in depth than an internship where I would just be laying out lights in Walmarts.
What stands out about your summer internship that was something you never learned in school?
They teach you very little in school compared to what will be learned on the job. I’ll learn probably 90% of the knowledge I need to know in a job. GBA has been a great learning environment for me and I can tell that it’s been that way for every employee here in my department. Everyone is very willing to teach you what they know.
What was the hardest thing to get used to working this summer at GBA?
For me, it was the drive. I live 40 minutes away. Luckily, there’s no traffic.

Name:  Nolan Greenaway
Department at GBA:  Traffic and Wastewater
What was your favorite thing(s) about working at GBA?
I really enjoyed getting hands on work with actual projects that GBA works on, such as Traffic Impact Studies. Also, I became more familiar with MicroStation and was able to help out a lot with various tasks. I really enjoyed all of the people I worked with at GBA as well. They are very nice, funny and extremely helpful with anything I did not understand.
What stands out about your summer internship that was something you never learned in school?
MicroStation as a whole was something that really stood out. I had never even heard of the program in school and had never used it so it was a great opportunity to learn a lot about it. Also, a lot of the projects we worked on had a very detailed design process which is something that is not covered as much in school.
What was the hardest thing to get used to working this summer at GBA?
One of the hardest things for me this summer had to be waking up at 6:30 in the morning every day to get ready for work. I was not used to this at all and it was definitely a big adjustment for me. Also, adjusting to working a desk job was a big change for me since I had never done that before.

Name: Cody LaMonaco
Department at GBA: Transportation – Bridge Group
What was your favorite thing(s) about working at GBA?
Some things I’ve really enjoyed about working at GBA have been: being involved with challenging projects, the feeling of comradery both within my group and the company as a whole, and the amount of help and learning opportunities that have been made available to me.
What stands out about your summer internship that was something you never learned in school?
Something that stands out for me is how much I’ve learned about the bidding process. I was able to sit in on a meeting for the contractors to ask questions before formal bids were due; this really gave me a better feel for the issues that can make or break bids.
What was the hardest thing to get used to working this summer at GBA?
There wasn’t really anything I felt was hard to get used to. I really felt like I fit in well both in my group and the company, and when I did run into issues there was always someone there to answer my question.

Name: Justin Seabaugh
Department at GBA: Transportation - Traffic
What was your favorite thing(s) about working at GBA?
The closely knit group, you get to know your coworkers well.
What stands out about your summer internship that was something you never learned in school?
I learned how to rate the condition of pavements, an important concept to understand that is barely touched on in classes.
What was the hardest thing to get used to working this summer at GBA?
It was hard to get accustomed to tracking hours on each project, and working full 40 hour work weeks.
Thanks to our interns and we wish them good luck!! 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Amendment 7 for Missouri Roads



On August 5th, Missouri will hold a primary vote on Amendment 7, an amendment designed to address the state’s crumbling infrastructure with a proposed 10-year transportation sales tax.


Over 2,000 of Missouri’s bridges are considered structurally deficient and though Missouri has the seventh largest highway system in the country, it ranks only 40th in funding per mile. Ninety percent of the tax revenue from the amendment will fund state priority transportation projects while the remaining 10 percent will be divided between the cities and counties.


The increase would not affect taxes on items like groceries, medicine, fuel, utilities, mortgage payments, education, health care, retirement savings and prescription drugs. And it cannot be extended beyond the initial 10-year timeframe without another vote by Missouri’s citizens.


Groups like the Missouri Farm Bureau support the amendment, with bureau president Black Hurst saying: “A good road and bridge system is so vitally important to agriculture and all of rural Missouri, and approval of Amendment 7 will make many needed transportation improvements throughout Missouri.”


For more information about the benefits of the tax, go to www.fixmoroads.com.