Work Begins On Columns For Major Interchange In NW Phoenix Metro
Columns that will support the $41.9 million overpass and interchange at Bell Road and Grand Avenue [US Highway 60], will begin rising on the east side of the project now that nine shafts have been drilled, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.
Work has proceeded steadily since Bell Road closed April 1 between 134th Drive and West Point Parkway, with crews clearing the project area and relocating utilities.
The Bell Road closure, which will end by November, will allow faster construction of a bridge over Grand Avenue and the BNSF Railway tracks, according to ADOT.
For more information on the interchange project, visit
Hearing Scheduled for May 11 On South Mountain Freeway
ADOT and the Federal Highway Administration are scheduled to present oral arguments May 11 in U.S. District Court in Phoenix as a judge considers motions for summary judgment in the case brought by Protecting Arizona Resources and Children and the Gila River Indian Community.
The 22-mile, $916 million freeway, expected to open in late 2019, is designed to bring a long-planned direct link between the East Valley and West Valley, and will complete the Loop 202 and Loop 101 systems.
With construction scheduled to begin this summer, ADOT is conducting preliminary engineering, addressing cultural resources in the right of way, acquiring and preparing properties, and relocating utilities. ADOT received final federal clearance to move forward with the project in spring 2015.
Connect 202 Partners will design and build the freeway corridor and provide maintenance for 30 years after construction. The team consists of Fluor Enterprises Inc., Granite Construction Co. and Ames Construction Inc., with Parsons Brinckerhoff Inc. as the lead designer.
For more information, visit
Lunch + LEED | Sustainable Retail: NIKE's Path to Platinum
This month, a Lunch + LEED event in Tempe will focus on Nike’s path to LEED Platinum and how retail stores can use green resources and available opportunities to reduce consumption and energy. 
Lunch + LEED is a monthly educational event aimed to teach LEED Green Associates, LEED Accredited Professionals, and industry members who are actively involved in green building projects about the tools and processes that make up the local green building community.

According to the online event page, the presentation will, “examine the recent trends in high performance retail design” and how to garner the highest level of certification offered by the US Green Building Council by reviewing the NIKE case study in Henderson, Nev.

Marcus Sanchez, Vice President at Henderson Engineers, and Elyse Cocco, a mechanical engineer at Henderson Engineers, will present at the event, which takes place at 1700 N. McClintock Dr., Tempe, Ariz. The cost is $20 for USGBC AZ members and $30 for non-members.

Copper Springs Hospital to Open in Arizona on May 10
Copper Springs Hospital, a brand new 72-bed behavioral health facility, is set to open May 10 in Avondale, Ariz. The hospital will create more than 220 healthcare related jobs. 
Jokake Construction is the general contractor on the project. W.J. Maloney Plumbing is the plumbing contractor.
The hospital will be taking a “results-driven” approach to mental health treatment as well as providing “comprehensive inpatient and outpatient services” and cost-free health assessments any day of the week, according to a Copper Springs press release.
The hospital will host an an open house for the public May 9 from 4 to 7 p.m. to allow the community to meet staff members, including Medical Director Dorothy Piekut, M.D., Head of Internal Medicine Satpreet Gill, and Chief Executive Officer Phil Sheridan. Copper Springs is located at 10550 W. McDowell Road in Avondale, Ariz.
Sarcon Nears Completion of Santa Fe Airport Renovation
Sarcon Construction Corporation's Sante Fe Municipal Airport renovation project is nearly completed. The renovation of the 60-year-old building includes access to food and restrooms for travelers waiting to pass through TSA security checkpoints. The new additions are set to open in May.
In a press release, project manager Rob Wing says, “It’s been a rewarding experience to work with TSA, the airlines, the architect, Molzen/Corbin and City staff. We have forged a close, dependent and cooperative team.”
In June, Santa Fe Municipal Airport will complete a $1.1 Million project to add a second departure gate, café, outdoor patio, and restroom facilities post-security.
“Today, passengers prefer to quickly move through security and wait for their flight in a relaxed environment with access to food, beverages, restrooms and other amenities,” said Cameron Humphres, Manager of Santa Fe Municipal Airport. “This project not only adds much needed capacity to the terminal, it also vastly improves the passenger experience.” The project was primarily funded through a New Mexico State Legislature appropriation and New Mexico Department of Transportation grant.
In addition to the airport renovation, Sarcon Construction is currently working on several other projects in the Santa Fe community including the umbrellas at Franklin E. Miles Park on Siringo.
Construction Industry Organizations Call on Congress to Make Career Technical Education (CTE) a Priority
The Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) wrote and delivered a letter on April 18 urging members of the House and Senate to “swiftly reauthorize and improve programs designed to help train technical workers.” 
Recently, Congress did pass transportation and tax bills, which the letter praises. However, AED went on to explain that the difficulty recruiting workers was quickly deteriorating the economic benefit of these bills as companies who wish to hire technical workers are left scrambling to find them. The letter also notes that the Perkins Act, which provides funding for CTE programs, needs updating.
Construction, contractor, supplier and labor organizations signed the letter, including American Coal Ash Association, American Traffic Safety Services Association and National Steel Bridge Alliance. The letter brought to light the findings of a recently-released study that AED Foundation funded. College of William and Mary conducted the study, which found the equipment technician shortage is costing dealers approximately $2.4 billion per year in lost revenue and economic activity. The study cites a lack of “hard skills” as the top reason technician positions are going unfilled.
“The workforce challenges facing the construction equipment industry aren’t unique,” AED President & CEO Brian McGuire says. “Companies up and down the supply chain in every industry are having trouble finding the workers they need to thrive. Congress urgently needs to shine a spotlight on the issue and explore solutions as this problem will continue to get worse if left unaddressed.”