May/June 2019

Page 1

Volume 8 Issue 3

Mundall Trucking Celebrates 50 years $5.99 MAY-JUN 2019 Serving Contracting Firms and the Arizona Community. . . Then & Now

Clifton: Arizona’s Unknown Architectural Treasure The Height of a Three-Story Building: Ameron’s CAP Pipe Riding the Biggest Pipes: Ameron’s Massive CAP Siphons No Watertight Alibi: Phoenix’s Redwood Pipeline Water Flumes: Arizona’s Original Lazy River


Arizona’s Timeless MagAzine

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MAY-JUN 2019

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Arizona Contractor & Community (ACC) magazine is published bi-monthly (Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr, May/ June, July/Aug, Sept/Oct, and Nov/Dec). ACC is a professional publication designed for the contracting industry, engineers, architects, equipment rentals, suppliers, and others interested in Arizona and its history. Content including text, photographs or illustrations may not be reproduced without the written permission from the publisher. The publisher does not assume responsibility for unsolicited submissions. ACC reserves the right to reject any editorial and advertising material and reserves the right to edit all submitted content material. Arizona Contractor & Community Copyright © 2019 All rights reserved.

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contents 10





Back When: From Marilyn to Sandra: Phoenix’s Sahara Motor Hotel - Douglas Towne


Mundall Trucking: Celebrating 50 Years


54 58


Construction Around Arizona: Projects • People • Practices


Editor’s Column: Flumes: Arizona’s Original Lazy River - Douglas Towne





No Watertight Alibi: Phoenix’s Redwood Pipeline Douglas Towne Handling the Pressure: Hooper Concrete Pipe Co. Carly Hanson Building On The Past: 1957: Colorado River Aqueduct Siphon Project The Height of a Three-Story Building: Ameron’s CAP Pipe - Douglas Towne Riding the Biggest Pipes: Ameron’s Massive CAP Siphons - Steve “Ping” Pingleton Architect’s Perspective: Clifton: Arizona’s Unknown Architectural Treasure - Mark C. Vinson, FAIA/AICP

Digging Through the Archives: Bryant Shaw William Horner


Bid Results - Bidjudge


ACC Advertisers’ Index

Front Cover Oliver “Chick” Hooper, who would later start the Hooper Concrete Pipe Co. in Phoenix, surveying in 1927. Inset Hooper Concrete Pipe advertisement, 1950.


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teve Pingleton grew up in North Phoenix, graduated from Thunderbird High School, and attended Phoenix College and Bellevue College majoring in Graphic Arts. He subsequently worked for Woods Litho, one of the Valley’s biggest and best printers, which pioneered electronic prepress and high-quality offset printing. Steve moved to Seattle in 1994 to work for Rainier Color, the city’s top color shop. He later managed the color department at Capitol City Press in Olympia, Washington for 4 years. Steve has evolved with the printing trade over the last 25 years, becoming an expert in electronic prepress, color, graphic design, motion graphics, and video production. Away from the print shop, Steve, aka: “Ping,” is a well-known skateboarder and photographer. In 2004, he established his website, featuring photos and videos of pioneer Arizona skateboarders in the 1970s. He compiled and edited vintage 8mm, VHS, and Hi-8 videos to produce the Desert Pipes documentary DVD, which has sold more than 300 copies worldwide. Steve is working on a photography book on the history of Arizona skateboarding pioneers. He sells his photography online, including posters, prints and t‐shirts, and at SkaterCon, an annual spring event held in Paradise Valley. Clients include art galleries in New York and France. Although he has lived in Seattle for almost 25 years, he still considers Phoenix home, and visits his family and friends there during the holiday season every year.

ark Vinson is a Registered Architect and Certified Planner with expertise in architectural and urban design, historic preservation, and critical regionalism. A native of Arizona’s historic Clifton-Morenci mining district, he holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in architecture from Arizona State University, in addition to professional development certificates in preservation (Section 106 compliance) from the University of Nevada-Reno, and golf course design from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Mark has been elected to the American Institute of Architects’ national College of Fellows and is a past recipient of the Arizona Architects Medal, multiple Governor’s Honor Awards for Historic Preservation, the Arizona Preservation Foundation President’s Award, the Alumni Service Award from the ASU College of Architecture and Environmental Design, and several Tempe Beautification Awards. He has co-authored the award-winning books, And TiKo-Tu? The Midcentury Architecture of Greater Phoenix’ East Valley (Rio Salado Architecture Foundation) and Landmark Buildings: Arizona’s Architectural Heritage (Arizona Highways), as well as articles in Arizona Planning and the Journal of Arizona History. Mark was the City of Tempe’s founding Historic Preservation Officer and served as Tempe’s City Architect / Design, Preservation + Long Range Planning Manager. He has also been a Faculty Associate in ASU’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts. Mark is now engaged in private architectural, planning, and preservation practice, VinsonStudio PLLC. MAY-JUN 2019

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Arizona Contractor & Community

Image courtesy of Library of Congress

Top: Flume over the Agua Fria River four miles downstream of Waddell Dam, 1920s. Bottom: Fossil Creek, 1999.

Arizona’s Original Lazy River Douglas Towne


ur lives in the desert revolve around water, a precious commodity that’s becoming increasingly scarce. Water flows in less than 10 percent of Arizona’s streams as a result of dams, diversions, and groundwater pumping. Decreased stream flow also effects associated ecologically valuable riparian habitats. But as these stretches of lush green vegetation diminish, another water feature has increased around the state. Resorts and parks have created numerous artificial water slides and lazy rivers. These popular recreational facilities have a historical tie to water flumes used during Territorial days in the development of power, mining, and irrigation. Flumes conveyed water by gravity flow along metal or wooden troughs elevated on trestles. One flume located along Fossil Creek, that supplied the Childs-Irving power plants, had an oversized impact on Arizona. Hydroelectric generation at this location northwest of Payson was the brainchild of rancher Lew Turner, who envisioned sellten

ing the power to mines in Jerome and elsewhere in Yavapai County. The site at Fossil Springs was ideal for generating electricity because of the steep gradient to the Verde River and the constant flow of 322 gallons per second from the spring.

Image courtesy of Author

editor’s column: Flumes:

Turner purchased the water rights to Fossil Creek in 1900. The Arizona Power Company (TAPCO), later acquired by APS, began construction of the Childs Power Plant in 1908, hauling material 40 miles from the nearest railhead in Mayer. A dam was constructed that supplied water to a wooden flume (later replaced by steel), elevated above the terrain on wooden trestles to the Childs Power Plant near the Verde River. In 1915, the Irving Power Plant was built on Fossil Creek upstream of the Childs facility, along with Stehr Lake, a backup water supply for the Childs Power Plant.

MAY-JUN 2019

Images courtesy of Author

Left: Unused flume by Wagoner, AZ, 2009. Right: Fossil Creek, 1999. Below: Fossil Creek restoration schematic.

The two plants produced 4.2 megawatts of electrical power. In comparison, the Solana Solar Generating Station near Gila Bend produces 280 MW, the natural-gas-fueled Gila River Generating Station produces 2,200 MW, and Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station produces 3,942 MW. After World War I, demand for metals ebbed along with the mines’ needs for power. Electrical lines were built from the power plants to Phoenix, and supplied the majority of households in the city. By the 1930s, the plants delivered energy to Flagstaff, Wickenburg, Ash Fork, and Seligman. The Childs-Irving power plants came up for relicensing by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in 1994. By then, the plants were 0.01 percent of APS’s production. In 1999, the utility made the decision to shut down the plants and return the flow to Fossil Creek. Both plants closed in 2005; the decommissioning process took three years. Fourteen miles of infrastructure, including the Fossil Springs Dam, 630

tons of flume wood, 1,200 tons of flume steel and pipe, and 1,300 cubic yards of concrete were removed, according to the APS website. Fossil Creek was declared a Wild and Scenic River in 2008, and is now so popular that the U.S. Forest Service has a reservation system to limit visitors. Rich calcium-carbonate water combines with dissolved carbon dioxide to precipitate white deposits called travertine, which create picturesque pools and falls. The restored streambed is home to rare native fish including the headwater chub, roundtail chub, speckled dace, longfin dace, desert sucker, and Sonora sucker. Fossil Creek was the first significant stretch of river that was restored to its natural state in Arizona. Ed Fox, APS vice president, indicated the reason. “It is simply the right business decision and the right environmental decision to decommission Childs-Irving and reclaim the unique riparian

resource that surrounds Fossil Creek,” he told the Arizona Republic in 1999. Lost in the transition is the flume’s Territorial-era charm, which for decades was a badge of courage for thrill seekers. The dare devils would lift the sheet-metal covers off the flume below the Irving Power Plant and ride it like a water slide into Stehr Lake. No worries, they have plenty of safer water slide options these days.

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Retrofitting Sustainability Into Existing Buildings Jeff Kronenfeld


hen thinking of pollution, we may picture a crowded freeway or the billowing exhaust cloud of a factory, but commercial and residential buildings account for almost 40 percent of national carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, more than either the transportation or industrial sectors, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. They also account for 14 percent of potable water use, or nearly 15 trillion gallons per year, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. To put this in perspective, that’s enough water to fill Tempe Town Lake 15,353 times. While the list of such startling statistics goes on, the primary take away is that to reduce resource use and pollution significantly, we

need to address the buildings we live and work in. While new technologies have enabled the construction of some truly incredible systems, everything from buildings that produce as much energy as they use to those capable of purifying and using wastewater, the most significant gains won’t come from glitzy new construction projects, but rather, from upgrading existing ones. In this two-part article series, we’ll first examine why existing buildings should be upgraded and look at some of the unique challenges such projects — some of which have additional restrictions due to their status as historical buildings — can pose. In the second part, running in the next issue, we’ll look at some of the projects putting these concepts into action in Arizona. Before upgrading a building, it’s essential to determine if such a project is



The U.S. Treasury Building in Washington D.C. built in 1842 is now Gold certified.

worth the time, money, and effort. Since existing buildings don’t involve clearing natural areas, are more walkable, and are usually already linked to transportation networks, they typically have a leg up over new construction projects. These factors, combined with their embedded cultural and economic value, will usually justify the expense and inconvenience of a thorough upgrade. “The way that buildings connect people to the place that they are is one of the key reasons we see the renovation and preservation of historic buildings as such a priority,” explained Brendan Owens, a vice-president for the U.S. Green Building Council, which oversees the most popular environmental building standard currently in use, called Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). Having decided an upgrade is Arizona Contractor & Community





MAY-JUN 2019

Images courtesy of Wikimedia


worthwhile, next comes the Right: The former Phoenix Grocery warehouse at 515 E Jackson challenge in evaluating and St. during recent retrofitting, implementing how to best was built by Del Webb in 1946. retrofit a building. There are many methods, everything from running a pressure test to find leaks to going through a LEED checklist —whether or not one gets the certification — to just tackling the lowest hanging fruit such as increasing natural lighting or improving insulation. Since electric lighting represents six percent of total U.S. energy consumption, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, increasing natural light yields significant savings for both the environment and bank accounts. “Old buildings are generally fairly leaky, and so the conditioned air inside tends to migrate outside of the building, and your systems are working harder or you’re using more energy,” explained

Michael Munzing, owner/principal for Munzing Structural Engineering based out of Portland, Oregon. “A lot of times these types of upgrades are part of a much larger renovation. For instance, an old historic unreinforced masonry building, in order to bring it up to current codes and make it safe in the event of an earthquake, they’ll end up gutting the whole thing. That’s usually when they’ll bring all of the existing systems and everything up to code.” Of course, retrofitting historic buildings poses unique challenges. Certain architectural features must be preserved, and often a designer or builder can’t impact things such as site orientation or the thickness of certain walls. However, through clever engineering, other solutions can be implemented. Radiant heating systems can make a building more efficient with little or no visual impact, or Top: The oldest LEED certia solar panel can be hidden on fied building in the U.S. is the part of the roof visible only the Fay House in Camto passing birds. bridge, MA, built in 1807. While sealing leaks with Bottom: The New York expanding foam, adding State Executive Man­sion, Albany, NY built in 1856 is insulation or upgrading windows now Gold certified. might not be the sexiest subjects, when added together, such changes have a significant impact on the environment. Also, such improvements increase a building’s value while reducing operating costs. An LED bulb may require more cost upfront, but it saves money and energy in the long run. As any builder knows, cutting corners to save time usually ends up costing more in the long run. In many ways, green building isn’t so much about innovation as it is a return to time-honored principles.

Arizona Contractor & Community

MAY-JUN 2019


DCS Extends Riggs Road Through Queen Creek Douglas Towne


Mesa and Union Pacific Railroad to find a new alignment for the bores. This included sub-surface exploration to identify existing utilities and soil characteristics to find the best location possible. “The team was able to find a location for the bores that bypassed the intersection of Riggs and Combs roads,” Wes Standifird, project engineer, says. “We shallowed up the depth of the bore so it could be constructed with minimal impact to the flow of traffic.” The project presented a tough challenge with the bores, but the knowledge, experience and commitment of the DCS team and other project stakeholders prevailed to find the best solution possible for all parties to decrease further cost and time impacts. Subcontractors on the project included Horizontal Boring for jack and bore drilling and Pavement Recycling Systems for cement stabilization of the roadway.

Images courtesy of DCS Contracting

he challenge of working underground is that you’re never sure what you’ll encounter. Just ask DCS Contracting Inc. about their current $9.5 million project, with a 10-month build time, for the Town of Queen Creek doing improvements along Riggs Road. The completed project will connect Riggs Road from Rittenhouse to Ellsworth roads, providing a new traffic route through Queen Creek and a direct route to Interstate 10 from the East Valley. The benefits include reducing local traffic congestion and connecting the underground utility systems that had previously ended at the Union Pacific Railroad tracks on the project’s east end. The most challenging aspects of the project were the utility bores and the

inconsistency of subsurface material. “The original design called for a 660-foot-long jack and bore with a 16-inch waterline in a 36-inch steel casing under the intersection of Rittenhouse and Riggs roads (Combs Road) and the Union Pacific Railroad tracks,” Marty Monsegur, DCS Senior Project Manager, says. “The waterline bore was initially designed at a depth of 17 feet and then redesigned to a depth of 27 feet in order to avoid unsuitable soils and unforeseen utilities.” To complete the gas line construction, a 200-foot-long jack and bore with a 4-inch carrier pipe and 8-inch steel casing was needed, according to Monsegur. “Due to unsuitable soil conditions and conflicts with unforeseen utilities, the bore depth and alignment had to be redesigned a third time,” Eugene Hernandez, project manager, says. DCS worked with the Town of Queen Creek, Sunrise Engineering, the City of

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Benjamin Tate


nfill development is currently experiencing a renaissance in the Valley and in metropolitan areas across the U.S. There is no single cause for this. Instead, it is a confluence of economic factors, lifestyle trends, and significant changes in transportation technology and infrastructure. Since the Great Recession in 2008, the trend toward suburban sprawl and new development on the fringes of the Valley has dramatically reversed. Over the last decade, Phoenix and surrounding municipalities have exploded with infill growth and development. Congestion on Valley freeways and the availability of convenient public transit like the Valley Metro light rail have incentivized residents to move closer to urban cores and reduce their commutes. More recently, ridesharing, bike sharing, and other technology-based services have dramatically increased the convenience of transportation within urban corridors.

Images courtesy of Dustin Revella

Mixed Use and Evolving Zoning As residents began to move back into urban centers, development trends toward urban infill projects intensified. Demand for new housing, retail, and food and beverage opportunities in urban areas drove development toward city centers. Mixed-use developments, in particular, have proven successful in Central Phoenix, such as The Osborn Marketplace at the southwest corner of Seventh Avenue and Osborn, and The Colony at Seventh Street and Missouri. One of the most common challenges with infill development is zoning. More often than not, infill sites are vacant or underutilized because the existing zoning

is no longer compatible or consistent with the surrounding area. In some instances, the uses permitted by the current zoning are no longer desirable or economically viable. In others, the limitations imposed by the zoning district’s development standards (setbacks, height, lot coverage, etc.) do not offer sufficient scale or intensity to justify redevelopment. Land planning trends have evolved to meet these needs. Municipalities have adopted zoning codes and ordinances geared towards encouraging and facilitating infill development, offering flexibility in development standards and incentivizing greater commercial intensity and residential density. The City of Phoenix, for example, has adopted the Walkable Urban Code for the Central Avenue corridor, following the light rail along its path from Downtown Phoenix, through Midtown, and into Uptown. The Walkable Urban Code is designed to facilitate and encourage growth and redevelopment along the Central Corridor by offering additional density, height, lot coverage, and reduced parking requirements. The developmental flexibility and opportunities for additional density and intensity are tailored toward large-scale,


What’s Trending in Infill Development?

mixed-use developments that activate the street frontages and offer a more walkable environment.

Future Trends The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 established a tax incentive program to encourage and incentivize development in economically-distressed communities designated as Opportunity Zones. The Opportunity Zone program allows individuals to reduce, and under certain circumstances avoid, their tax liability on capital gains from other investments by investing those funds in Opportunity Zone development. The Opportunity Zones themselves are census tracts designated by the states and certified by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. To qualify, each census tract must meet certain area median income (AMI) requirements to be considered economically distressed. Maricopa County contains 61 Opportunity Zones and includes areas of Downtown Phoenix, the I-17 corridor, Grand Avenue corridor, Downtown Tempe, and Downtown Scottsdale. Many of these areas are largely developed but in need of significant economic revitalization. Consequently, much of the development opportunity in these areas will be through infill development and will likely face many of the zoning obstacles described above. As developers and investors become more familiar with the Opportunity Zone program and its tax advantages, development and competition for suitable sites in these areas will follow suit. The financial incentives offered by the program all but ensure that infill development will trend toward these areas and lead to significant redevelopment in Opportunity Zones throughout the Valley and the U.S. Benjamin Tate is a land use and zoning attorney at Withey Morris, PLC, joining the firm in 2017. He is a second-generation Phoenix native with deep roots in the Valley and a passion for development.

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CONSTRUCTION AROUND ARIZONA Projects Images courtesy of Buesing

Graycor Erects Prologis I-17 Logistics Center Carly Hanson


he Prologis I-17 Logistics Center is a distribution park that will include seven state-of-the-art warehouses near the Seventh Street exit on I-17 in central Phoenix. The buildings will range in size from 54,000 to 211,000 square feet and will be located on a 50-acre lot at 2111- 2145 South Seventh Street. HPA Architecture designed the center. Prologis is the developer of the new warehouses, and Graycor is the general contractor. Buesing Corp is serving as a civil subcontractor to help mitigate the distressed site. “Buesing has been on-site

since June 2018, starting with pre-wet efforts and then performing mass and overexcavation, site grading, earthwork, and some other activities,” Kevin Somerville, vice-president of business development, says. “The company will also import tens of thousands of cubic yards of fill soil to the site.” Buesing is an industry leader in material transport and recycles concrete and asphalt debris to produce MAG 702 aggregate base course (ABC) at its plant in Chandler. Suntec Concrete subcontracted Buesing to use this material as floor fill under the large-building concrete slabs. “More than 25,000 tons of material will be hauled to the site for Suntec in Buesing’s belly dump trucks,” Somerville says. Work on the project started in March

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2018 and is projected to be completed during the first quarter of 2019. The buildings will feature dock-high and at-grade loading, 32-foot clear heights, and ESFR sprinklers. The site has high visibility with a daily traffic count of 125,000 on I-17 and is located just minutes from Downtown Phoenix and Sky Harbor International Airport.

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Twenty two



MAY-JUN 2019

Alison Bailin


Images courtesy of Author

ason Wood’s roots in Arizona run deep. His story starts more than 100 years ago in Aravaipa Canyon, a wilderness preserve located about 50 miles northeast of Tucson. “I come from a long line of cattlemen who settled in Arizona in the late 1800s,” said Wood. “They lived off of the land, and I think that is how the seeds of working with it – albeit in a much different way – were sewn within me.” Wood, however, never got the chance to live on the ranch. His grandparents would sell it – and ensure it was preserved, in fact – in 1970, in what was then the largest purchase by the Nature Conservancy, which now owns and manages over 7,000 acres in the area commonly referred to as the Aravaipa Preserve. “My father was born with a rare and incurable genetic disorder that affects the body’s ability to fight infection,” said Wood. “My grandparents didn’t sell the land squarely due to my father, but it was certainly part of the reason.” Wood’s father didn’t let the disease control his life – not by a longshot. “He became a dentist, married my mother and had both my brother and me before passing away at 29,” said Wood. Inspired by both dad and mom, initially, a homemaker who eventually got her MBA and became a financial advisor, Wood graduated high school and attended the University of Arizona, still interested in

working with the land, but also inspired by daily discussions about the capital markets with mom. “But a rancher, I was not. So, I decided to study finance and see about getting into real estate,” said Wood, who graduated from UA and then, after working in Tucson for a law firm, entered law school at the University of Texas, intending to practice real estate and corporate law back in Arizona. Wood moved to the Valley in 2007, just in time to get his start in real estate…as the housing crash began. Like his parents, Wood pressed on, focusing on helping clients restructure existing real estate portfolios and overcome other challenges. By 2014, he was selected for inclusion in Southwest Super Lawyers’ annual list of rising stars and earned the coveted AV® Preeminent rating by the MartindaleHubbell Peer Review Ratings system. Also eager to ensure the land in Arizona and beyond continues to be developed thoughtfully, Wood became involved in both the Arizona District Council of the Urban Land Institute and the Arizona and New Mexico Operations Committee of the International Council of Shopping Centers, while also taking on a board position at Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona. By early 2016, Wood was ready for a new challenge, so he joined Quarles & Brady LLP. Less than two years later, in late 2017, he was chosen as the Arizona chair of the firm’s Real Estate Practice Group. Today, Wood handles a wide array of transactional real estate matters locally and throughout the country. In particular, he


Local Roots: Jason F. Wood is Helping to Build Arizona

has significant experience in forming joint ventures, commercial leasing, acquisitions and dispositions, sale-leaseback transactions, real estate secured lending, development and redevelopment projects, corporate mergers and acquisitions, construction contracts, condominium and mixed-use CC&Rs, and COREAs. He has assisted his clients in acquiring, financing, developing, restructuring, selling, and leasing shopping centers, automotive dealerships, office buildings, hotels, industrial parks, apartment complexes, and raw land (of course!), among others. “My practice also includes the preparation and negotiation of joint development, cost-sharing, and construction agreements, as well as restrictive covenants, easements, and related project documents in connection with the development of master-planned communities, shopping centers, and mixeduse developments,” says Wood, who also handles some banking and finance matters as well. As a result, Wood was named among the 2019 “People to Know in Commercial Real Estate.” In the magazine’s annual publication, Wood was asked: “what advice would you offer to someone who wants to become successful in this industry.” “It’s elementary advice to many, but seek out mentors, ask meaningful questions, create goals and never give up on them,” says Wood. Alison Bailin is an executive at HMA Public Relations and a freelance writer for more than two dozen publications.

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“Pat’s Run” Has a “Two-Wheeled” Version William Horner


ore than 400 motorcyclists roared from Mesa to the American Legion Pat Tillman Post 117 in Phoenix on Saturday, March 30th. Their trip was to pay respects to the late ASU and Arizona Cardinals standout player and Army Ranger who died in Afghanistan in 2004. Post 117 featured Tillman’s restored 1968 Chevrolet Impala SS Convertible, which he had Top left: Courtesy Chevy purchased as a hosts, Ivan Renteria rookie safety while and Monte Hoskins. with the Cardinals Above: Brian McKenna and Nate in 1998. The car Rotolante behind the grill. was later restored

602.233.3339 •

by Ronnie Rains, who had a custom mural added to the vehicle that paid tribute to Tillman. The car will be auctioned at Barrett Jackson in January 2020. “I was a little nervous when I found out this high-profile vehicle would be out in the elements on display,” says Monte Hoskins, a representative for Courtesy Chevrolet, which was one of the event’s sponsors. During the event, Hoskins announced that the Association of the Wall & Ceiling Industry – Arizona will make a $3,500 donation to Post 117 at the Talking Stick Golf Tournament, held in December. After admiring Tillman’s former vehicle, the motorcyclists continued north to finish the ride in Cave Creek. Trafficade, one of the event’s sponsors, provided traffic control.

• Trucking (Simple 16s End Dumps & Bellies)

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• Site Concrete (Curb & Gutter / Amenity)

• Shotcrete

Buesing Corp is a leader in the construction industry providing a variety of services for over 10 market sectors in Arizona, including private and public projects. Buesing Corp has been providing ancillary services to the utility and underground contractors statewide for decades as we have been in business since 1965. Please give us the opportunity to assist you on your next project.

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Choosing the Right Concrete Product Dave Endres


hen it comes to residential projects, it is essential to make sure that you, as the contractor, are using the correct material to ensure that both you and the client are happy with the final product. Due to its economic benefits, concrete has become a popular product, offering value for clients and contractors alike. It is longlasting, requires little maintenance, and is exceptionally durable. When choosing concrete for a project, contractors must first determine what performance specifications need to be met such as strength, abrasion or high heat. Premixed concretes are engineered and designed for a variety of criteria that can be used for many different projects, both for interior or exterior applications. However, not all of these concrete mixes will work for every project. Contractors need to read the product’s technical performance information to help understand the difference between these mixes, which concrete product will give you the best result for your project, and when you should utilize a concrete truck.

Images courtesy of Kelly Ronna

Not all Concrete Mixes are the Same Not all concrete mixes will yield the same results. When determining which concrete mix to use for your project, contractors should consider how strong the concrete needs to be for the project. Concrete varies in strength that is measured by PSI, or pounds per square inch. For example, the average residential project requires anywhere from 2,500 PSI to 5,000 PSI. Contractors can use lower-strength

concrete mixes for projects where point loads are not an issue, such as sidewalks or patios. Contractors should also be aware of weather during installation. If the air temperature is above 90° F, you should be careful about laying concrete or using concrete products. The issue is that the top layer of concrete will dry much faster than the bottom layer. As concrete dries, it shrinks. This means that the top will be shrinking while the bottom is stationary, which can cause cracks, holes and uneven surfaces. In the extreme heat of the Southwest, contractors should schedule the concrete pour in the early morning and apply a curling compound to the surface or mist the curing concrete for 48 hours after installation. Another factor to consider when choosing a concrete mix is whether or not

your project will require finishing touches, such as staining or stamping. This may require a higher level of Portland cement or fines to assure you can obtain the desired aesthetic finish. Which Mix is Right for Your Project? If you are working on a sidewalk or patio, ask the client how trafficked the area will be. For paths, a concrete mix with lower PSI can be used in areas with less traffic. For driveways that will be exposed to higher intensity activity, contractors should use a high-strength concrete mix. Contractors should also consider using a crack-resistant concrete mix to reduce the risk of surface shrinkage cracks. For projects like setting fences or mailbox posts, the strength of the concrete mix should be considered along with the set time. A fast-setting concrete mix is ideal for same-day use projects such as these. Some fast-setting concrete mixes do not require mixing or bracing, making the process even faster. When it comes to choosing the correct concrete for a project, there are many performance needs to consider and a variety of mixes on the market. Contractors need to consider variables such as strength and performance requirements, building codes specifications and temperatures during application. Using the wrong blend can be detrimental to your project. However, the beauty of using concrete is, if the project is done correctly with the right material, it should last a very long time. Dave Endres is in Masonry Operations for Sakrete of North America at Oldcastle Architectural Products.

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twenty eight

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t is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. Let’s say you hire a contractor to install a pool in your backyard. The contractor assures that the service will be done at an agreed-upon price and a contract is made between the two parties. However, days pass and the anxious homeowner watches as there is little progress on the pool. Concerned, you call the contractor who fires off explanations ranging from medical issues to family emergencies causing the lack of service. Or perhaps, even worse, the contractor does not respond or asks for additional money. At this point, the homeowner realizes that they have been scammed by an unlicensed contractor. Despite the prevalence of complaints about unlicensed contractors, many customers are hesitant to hire licensed contractors, according to roofing contractor Melvin Monzon. He and his wife, Anna Monzon, are owners of the Registrar of Contractors-licensed Monsoon Roofing in Gilbert, AZ. Monzon, who was trained in roof repairs by his brothers, has been a roofing contractor for 26 years. He enjoys his job and remarks that repairing a roof is, “…like putting new life into a house.” During his career, which includes 15

about 2/3 are licensed,” Knupp says. There are two different criminal offenses that unlicensed contractors can face, according to Knupp. One crime is contracting without a license, and the other is advertising without a license. Both offenses are Class 1 misdemeanors. According to the Arizona Legislature, punishment for a Class 1 misdemeanor is a 6-month prison sentence. According to Title 32 Chapter 10 of the Arizona Revised Statutes, a contractor is required to “be licensed through the Registrar of Contractors to perform construction or home repair and remodeling jobs having total project cost, including labor and materials, above $1,000 or requiring a building permit. Unlicensed contractors can endanger the health, safety, and welfare of the public.” The ROC has a “Most Wanted” web page listing the worst unlicensed contractors in the state. James Rafael Servellon was one of the unlicensed contractors on the list and was arrested in 2018. Servellon illegally contracted with homeowners for countertop projects and failed to complete the work from 20092015. He was sentenced to nearly four years in prison, according to an article by the Associated Press. Anna Monzon has sage advice for homeowners who are looking to hiring a contractor or homeowners looking to sell their home. “I think for customers, it is important to know what to look for,” she said. “A lot of times, people know what they don’t know.” She advised looking for a company that has a solid reputation and excellent customer reviews. The ROC advises customers to ask for a contractor’s ROC number and researching them on their website,


Brian Adigwu

years owning Monsoon Roofing, Monzon has encountered customers who told of their experiences dealing with unlicensed roofing contractors. “They [unlicensed contractors] would fix a roof, charge for it, and then when it rains and leaks again and they [customers] would call and call, and they would never go back,” Monzon says. “And they can’t get a hold of them or can’t make them come back. That is when some of them [customers] realize that they hired an unlicensed contractor.” The roofer added that some unlicensed contracts ask for money up front and never come back to do the work. Monzon said that unlicensed contracting gives his business a bad reputation by providing false prices and giving the wrong information to customers. “When an unlicensed roofing contractor gives an estimate, it would be a big difference with one from a licensed contractor,” he says. “Some customers would say ‘Wow, why are you so much?’” Unlicensed contractors likely don’t carry any insurance and would not take any responsibility for worker injuries or property damage, according to Monzon. A roofing contractor must have workers compensation and general liability insurance. A customer who hires an unlicensed contractor risks facing legal trouble if the contractor gets injured due to not following safety guidelines like wearing a harness. “If you are a homeowner and you hire an unlicensed contractor and one of their crew falls, they are more likely to flip and go after you,” Monzon says. Jim Knupp, the chief communications officer at the Arizona ROC, said that whenever construction picks up, the number of unlicensed contractors increases. “The Registrar receives about 5,000 to 6,000 complaints each year, of which about 1/3 are unlicensed while

Brian Adigwu is a mild-mannered freelance journalist who wanted to be Clark Kent when he grew up.

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The Perils of Hiring an Unlicensed Contractor







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Back When

From Marilyn to Sandra: Phoenix’s Sahara Motor Hotel Douglas Towne


ollywood came to Phoenix when the Sahara Motor Hotel opened downtown at the northeast corner of First and Polk streets on February 19, 1956. George Goebel, the star of the self-titled NBC comedy series that ran for six seasons, brought his show to celebrate the occasion. Crowds filled the mid-century motel and surrounding vantage points to watch performances by Goebel, a part-owner of the hotel, and his entourage, which included two Mrs. Goebels. “You know I’ve got two wives,” Goebel told the Arizona Republic, referring to his real and TV spouses. “And I brought both of ‘em along. You may not like my act, but you gotta admire my nerve.” The Sahara was designed by architect Matthew Trudelle and built by the Del E. Webb Construction Co. The three-story motor hotel featured a coffee shop, the Caravan Room restaurant, the Casbar cocktail lounge, and 175 rooms surrounding a courtyard pool and garden. One of its two penthouse suites became the temporary home for Marilyn Monroe when she stayed in Phoenix during the filming of the movie, Bus Stop in 1956. The building later became the Ramada Inn Downtown before ASU purchased it for student housing in 2006. The building was razed in 2010 to become a parking lot, and then the ASU Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, which opened downtown in 2016.

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Mundall Trucking Celebrates its 50th Anniversary T he reason for the Mundall Trucking, Inc. success after 50 years in business is simple, “We’re more efficient, safe and have the ability to work through the everyday issues, “says company president John Mundall. “We already had the goodwill and reputation out there that my dad, Danny Mundall, had worked

so hard for,” John says. To that foundation, Mundall Trucking added state-of-the-art equipment along with some of the best drivers in the industry. The company has a fleet of 37 Super 18 dump trucks, 6 Simple 16’s, 2 new Kenworth Simple 18’s. The new T880 Simple 18 trucks are built by Inland Kenworth and the bed is built by OSW out of Washington. Along with these two companies, John is currently working on build-

ing some new Simple 18’s that can haul 25 tons. They are expected to be complete in the summer of 2019. Over the last 50 years, Mundall Trucking has built relationships and hauled for top suppliers in the valley, including Industrial Asphalt, Cal Mat, Vulcan Materials, United Metro, Southwest Asphalt, Mesa Materials, Hanson and Solterra Materials and contractors like M.R. Tanner, Sunland Asphalt, Nesbitt Contracting, WSP Inc., VSS International, Knochel Brothers, Markham, Ace Asphalt and many more. It is probably safe to say that those dark green trucks have dumped into every paving company’s machine in the valley at one point or another.

Top left: Aerial views of Mundall Trucking, 1980 and 2019. Left: Early Mundall Truck fleet at the Baseline yard, 1980s. Right: Aerial of current fleet facing South Mountain, 2019.






MUNDALL TRUCKING Left: John and Danny Mundall. Below: Lester Mundall.

and purchased the 40 acres where Mundall Trucking is currently located at 2102 W Baseline Rd. Lester drove 300 hundred head of cows down the streets of Phoenix The Mundall Trucking success story starts to their new home. Lester Mundall had more than a century ago with John’s many talents. He was an exceptional Dairygreat-grandfather, also named Jon Mun- man, farmer and entrepreneur. After selldall, immigrated from Mundal, Norway ing the dairy in 1975, he retired to Camp to the Valley in 1896. Verde, AZ. Jon built his first home Family friend and started his family “My dad always said that our Dave McNeil, 69, at 32nd Street and Air employees are the face of our remembers those Lane, in Phoenix where years and even spent a Sky harbor airport is company and we just have to bit of time working for today. The empty lot is give them the opportunity to Lester Mundall turnstill there today and the ing watermelon vines be successful” palm tree still stands in in the fields when he the front yard. was just a boy. “Lester One of Jon Mundall’s sons, Lester John is the only guy in my whole life who ever Mundall was born in 1912, the year Arizona fired me,” McNeil recalled while laughing. became a state. Lester Mundall started his “I remember this kid picked up a waterdairy near Camelback Road and 15th Ave- melon and threw it and hit me, so I did it to nue. Lester grew his dairy to 300 Holsteins him and then Lester saw me and fired me.” milk cows and in 1952, he sold the land John says “Dave McNeil is one of the

Five Generations of Mundalls in the Valley


most talented paving operators in the valley.” I first met Dave when I backed my 10 wheel dump truck into the paver he was operating for Pulice Construction. Dave is a great operator but that’s not what set him apart from others. He always took the time to train new drivers how it is supposed to be done. I watched him get off the paver and jump up on the running board of the truck and help a driver to understand exactly what he wanted him to do. Dave believed in teaching them the right way right off the bat to make his job easier and give that confidence that that new guy needed. The respect and time he spent with me and my drivers was priceless. MUNDALLTRUCKING.COM


of Arizona. In those days, you had to have a permit to have a trucking company. Alan Harris was Bill Cummins son in law and Danny Mundall and Alan Harris operated on Bill Cummins permit for a few In 1968 Lester Mundall was friends with Bill years and then separated and ran compaCummins. Bill Cummins owned a permit to nys independently. Both companies have operate a trucking business in the state grown together thru the years as family

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and friends asphalt to a Nesbitt overlay do , support- project in Phoenix, 1994. ing each other along the way. Danny purchased two 10wheels and hired his first driver, Don Eaves, the driver who picked up milk for the dairy and he retired with Mundall trucking after 20 years.

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John Mundall Joins the Company


At a young age John grew up helping his grandfather on the farm. “It was a great life working in the fields with the workers,” he says. “I learned my work ethic from my family and those workers.” He also worked for his dad’s trucking company fixing tires and fixing trucks before he was able to drive truck. During high school he took a summer job for Saguaro Petroleum on a chip seal crew and then worked building an emulsion plant for a company called Ted R Jenkins. He was hired to run it once it was built and was the plant manager for 3 years. There was an accident at the plant and John was badly burned. After his accident in 1983 John decided to join his dad’s company and Danny took him to Alans Harris’s yard, and when he suffered “Our relationship and loyalty with purchased Alan’s a bad horse accilast 10-wheeler. Kenworth are topnotch,” John says. “They dent followed by John drove for 18 a stroke. “Whatwere the only ones to help push with years ever he touched, financing to get our fleet going.” Danny Munhe did really dall who is 81, well at and my gradually turned the business over to John grandpa was that way too,” John said. and focused on other activities. He was a In fact, Danny was also a great football competitive rodeo roper until the age of 72 player, wrestled, raced sprint cars, bred an

Matt, John, and Javier (l-r) with a new truck at Inland Kenworth.

elite bloodline of hunting hounds, and bred and trained rope horses. And although John learned a lot from his father, he credits his mother, Virginia Crook Mundall – Miss Arizona USA in 1960 and a Miss Universe Pageant competitor – with teaching him to work. She always expected him to mow the grass and tend her flower beds and vegetable gardens.

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Congratulations to Mundall Trucking for 50 years!



The Houston’s In 1987 Kevin Houston and Steve Houston and a family friend, Terry Little, joined Mundall Trucking. The 2 Houston brothers had married Johns’ 2 sisters, Danette Mundall and Cynthia Mundall. They ran 10 dump trucks together. In 1996 they sold their 10 wheelers and bought 10 new Kenworth Super 16s’. In 2001 the Houston’s decided to start their own company in Mesa and are very successful. In 2001 John’s wife Kim, joined the company and became the office manager

MUNDALL TRUCKING and CFO. The Mundall children, Jarid, Jamie, Jessica, and spouses, Jarom, Jesenia and Brendon, have all worked for the company. John and Kim currently have 3 grandchildren and that started the 6th generation of Mundall’s.

Mundall Goes State-of-the-Art A pivotal moment in Mundall Trucking was when they ordered 10 super dumps to make the jump from a local company to a significant Arizona competitor. The new trucks featured the Kenworth T800 truck with a Strong Arm tag axle from Strong Industries, which allowed for significantly increased payloads and a Williamson Tesco dump body. The transformation, however, didn’t come easily. Financing was difficult and the trucks were expensive, but with help of Greg Sturnberg, Mike Kennedy and Doug

Burkard from Inland Kenworth and a 5 year contract with Cal Mat, it all came together. “Our relationship and loyalty with Kenworth has always been strong,” John says. John believed the super dumps, or “10-wheelers on steroids,” were the future in aggregate and asphalt hauling. “We grew up with 10-wheelers, so these new trucks were right up our alley,” he says. The new super dumps, hauling 23.50 tons, quickly earned their keep moving tons of asphalt quicker than the old 10-wheelers. With the new trucks, we were able to haul more material more efficiently.

Left: John and Kim Mundall. Above: 40th anniversary truck.

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qualified Robert Lopez, John Wright and Fred Haddox. With the help of this new team, along with key employee Eric Hill which has been with Mundall Trucking for over 30 years. Together the team brought a bright future, new culture and professionalism to Mundall Trucking. For all the trucking company’s success, John and his father have always given credit to their employees who have worked hard and created a good foundation for servicing customers, “My dad always said that our employees are the face of our company and we just have to give them the opportunity to be successful, “John says. “When you know people, and they know your family, you want to help them however you can. We are loyal to our employees and have had two funerals at our yard for Rocky Kambra and Carl Claxton. “It is one of the most moving moments in my life when the family of these two men allowed the Mundall family to participate in celebrating their life.

Special Thanks To Kathy and Jim Zimmer, Chris Rich, Pat Flanery and so many more we give a special thank you. We have named just a few but want everyone to know that Mundall Trucking appreciates you and would not be as successful if it wasn’t for the relationships that have been built through the years. The support, the advice, the guidance that we have received from so many has made our business successful and truly blessed our lives. For that, we are forever grateful. As the company celebrates its 50th Anniversary as one of the Valley’s top haulers, John emphasizes the reasons Mundall Trucking has prospered for a half century. Because the customer has a need, we have a job to do Because the customer has a choice, we must be the preferred choice

Surviving the Recession

approached me and asked me to haul their millings on all their jobs that year. Working with these two companies and the lenders helped get us thru a difficult time. After weathering the economic decline, the company managed to thrive by doubling its truck fleet by 2014. “We were able to purchase used trucks from other companies that were no longer able to stay in business or selling their equipment.

Mundall Trucking took a hit like the rest of the construction industry with the 2008 Recession. “In 2012, we lost 50 percent of our business,” John says. “Our lenders let us skip payments on our trucks; otherwise we might not have made it.” The company tightened up expenses, and was offered the opportunity to work out of town on the Navajo Tribal lands with VSS International where we did a four-month chip sealing project, also that same summer Brian Gillmore with WSP Inc. In 2010, Mundall Trucking hired highly

Because the customer has immediate needs, we must be flexible Because the customer has high expectations, we must excel Because the customer has influence, our reputation is in their hands Because of the customer, we EXIST!

The Future of Mundall Trucking




Robert Lopez - Vice President

Eric Hill - Customer Service Manager I have worked for Mundall trucking for over 30 years and Danny Mundall would say “It’s the past employees that have set the bar high for quality service of today and it’s up to the present employees to keep it going in the future. One thing I know is that you can learn something new every day doing this job if you challenge yourself. The thing I love the most is your family here! Not a number and it shows up every day because of the employees that come here to work want to be the best they can because of the reputation.

“Hiring new drivers with no experience and having our trainers give them an opportunity to be successful at a new career is one of the most rewarding thing for me.” Our drivers are safe and communicate with each other to get the job done safely. Whether we are paving, milling, or chip sealing in the Arizona communities the drivers have to be the best with he stresses of traffic, pedestrians, working around heavy equipment and creating a safe environment. We’ve also designed a dispatch system that allows us to be more efficient where our trucks are with GPS mapping. If a driver gets lost David Martinez in dispatch can help them reroute and go to the correct locations safety.





TRUCKING Super 18 Dump Trucks Phoenix, Arizona




TEAM work makes Mundall the best in the trucking industry. We get things done safely the way our customers expect. On most of our projects, the customers ask the supplier to have Mundall on the job. My favorite aspect of working at Mundall is the personal touch that I take to do things here in the shop with the mechanic’s team. I have the owners ok to do things without asking unless there is a high cost involved. I love the company because it’s familyowned and operated, and you feel like family!

“We’ve grown together” Mundall Trucking and

Congratulations to Mundall trucking 8314 West Roosevelt Street Tolleson, Arizona 85353 Toll Free: (800) 258-7791 Office: (602) 258-7791 Fax: (602) 484-0284

Fred Haddox - Shop Foreman

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OSW Equipment & Repair, LLC

Manufacturer of: End Dumps, Side Dumps, Super Dumps, Simple 16, 18 & Transfers

OSW would like to congratulate John Mundall of Mundall Trucking for 50 years of business in the Phoenix area!





ON 50


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No Watertight Alibi:

Phoenix’s Redwood Pipeline

Images courtesy of City of Phoenix

Douglas Towne


MAY-JUN 2019

V “When someone wanted water, they just knocked a hole in it.”

erde Park is located just east of downtown in the Garfield Historic District. The urban park features basketball and volleyball courts, a playground, recreation center, historic fire station, and a WPA-built shuffleboard shelter. The park’s name has nothing to do with its green vegetation, but is derived from the Verde River. What connection does this small park at Ninth and Polk streets have with a river 28 miles away? Interestingly, this site was formerly the city’s waterworks and the endpoint of a pipeline that carried water from the Verde River. The water project, built in the early 1920s, was Phoenix’s largest public works project at that time and became the city’s first financial boondoggle. “The resulting scandal rocked a couple of city administrations, and at least one public official wound up in jail,” declared a 1954 Arizona Republic article. How could transporting the river’s fresh water leave such a sour taste in the mouths of residents? The city’s water system began when Phoenix Water Company, a private enterprise, drilled shallow wells at the site of Verde Park in 1889. The slightly salty water was distributed to the city’s 3,000 residents, the majority of whom had previously used untreated canal water for their household needs. The city purchased the water company for $150,000 in 1907. To improve water quality for its residents, Phoenix sought to tap the Verde River, at a location 4 ½ miles above its confluence with the Salt River on Fort McDowell tribal lands. Residents loved the idea; a $1.3 million bond election to construct a delivery system passed by a 25 to 1 vote in 1919. But inflation and a shortage of materials caused by World War I rendered the original

Left: Phoenix’s redwood pipeline east of the city, 1920s. Right: Construction of Phoenix’s redwood pipeline, 1920s.

Arizona Contractor & Community

budget insufficient, according to Doug Kupel’s book, Fuel for Growth: Water and Arizona’s Urban Environment. Concrete and metal pipe were too expensive, so another material was used that had the approval of William L. Church, a noted consulting engineer from New York City. “In my judgment, there is no question as to the desirability of a wooden pipeline…

which does not diminish with age,” he told Phoenicians. “A pipeline of redwood or cypress, properly selected and carefully built, and kept constantly saturated with water is as permanent as any other material…and may be adopted by you without fear of disappointment.” The resulting Verde River redwood pipeline was 22.6 miles of 36-inch pipe, and

6.1 miles of 38-inch pipe. The redwood slats were held in a tube-shape by iron bands a half-inch in diameter. The pipeline material arrived in Phoenix via 118 railcars hauling redwood, 39 carrying reinforcement materials, and two containing valves and fittings, according to a 1971 Republic article. The pipeline’s path went south to the Granite Reef Dam, then followed the Arizona Canal bank road to Thomas Road and continued to Phoenix. Morgan Ford and Company of Phoenix performed the excavations, backfill, and right-of-way for the 36-inch portion of the line, but defaulted on the 38-inch section. The city completed the job by “force account,” which pays the contractor the actual cost to do the work. The Pacific Tank Company and the Redwood Manufacturing Company each constructed a section of the redwood pipeline. The pipeline was supplied by subsurface flow from the Verde River, which was filtered through an infiltration gallery of sand and gravel and flowed by gravity to the city. This method proved inadequate, so shallow wells were drilled near the Verde River to supply the pipeline. Verde River water reached Phoenix in late 1921. A chlorination plant was built, and residents were able to use the water a few months later. Other problems, however, could not be fixed so easily. “The pipeline wandered over the

Images courtesy of City of Phoenix

Construction of Phoenix’s redwood pipeline, 1920s.

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top of the desert like a snake, sometimes underground, and sometimes on top,” according to a 1954 Republic article. “When someone wanted water, they just knocked a hole in it. It was just a bunch of boards, with barrel hoops around it, so it didn’t last very long.” Within four years, the redwood pipeline was leaking severely. This was due to using low-grade redwood, and keeping the pipeline only half full; the dry, upper slats separated and the iron bands rotted, according to a 1971 Republic article. The project’s proposed 25-milliongallon reservoir, canceled in a cost-cutting measure, contributed to the city’s water supply problems that occurred primarily during the heavy-demand summer months. Without available storage, the water system couldn’t provide constant pressure. Leakage from the pipeline in one 5-mile section was so significant that the Western Concrete Pipe Company won a city bid to replace the segment with a precast reinforced concrete pipe in 1927. Despite continued deterioration of the redwood pipeline, Phoenix voters rejected a $2.7 million bond proposal for a new concrete pipeline and a 20-million-gallon reservoir in both 1929 and 1930. The pipeline suffered more problems, according to Kupel’s book. “On February 14, 1930, a section [of pipeline] four miles east of Scottsdale blew out and sent a geyser of water 100 feet in the air, wasting millions of gallons of water and creating a vast sea of mud. Several days later, sections eight miles below the infiltration gallery broke, discovered when workmen observed water bubbling out of the ground and forming a large lake.” The accompanying water shortages influenced voters to eventually approve a concrete pipeline. American Concrete Pipe Company and Schmidt-Hitchcock Contractors completed construction of the entire length of the pipeline in 1931. The new conveyance not only provided Phoenix with a reliable water source, but it also allowed the city to market the resource to other users outside Phoenix city limits. The abandoned redwood pipeline then found a more successful second life. “The pipeline was a board-feet bonanza,” wrote Republic columnist Don Dedera in 1956. “A trail of building material can be traced from downtown Phoenix northeast to the Verde River, from modest city porches, through luxurious resort bars, along with pasture fences. Pictures in the Hotel Westward Ho are framed in it. There must be 15 barns made of it. Yavapai Apaches have built

many wagons from it. Troughs made of it have watered generations of horses, and the stuff forms the doors of some of the finest homes in Phoenix.” Salvaged redwood was also used for the construction of Phoenix’s Pueblo Grande Archeological Park buildings. The iron straps were salvaged and reused during World War II. The redwood pipeline was an engineering failure, which may have been precipitated by graft associated with public officials. “A lot of money was supposed to have been diverted by very intricate means, and a lot of people left town in a

hurry,” one resident told the Republic. “But there was little prosecution. Just stink.” And sink. More than two decades after the pipeline was decommissioned, the unused conveyance created unexpected problems for the city. During excavation along Thomas Road by 44th Street in 1954, a paving contractor drove his truck over an underground portion of the conduit, which collapsed. He needed to be towed out of the hole. The city’s miscue, it seems, refused to be buried.

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Handling the Pressure: Hooper Concrete Pipe Co. Carly Hanson


here’s an impressive construction legacy at a new industrial park near I-17 and South Seventh Street. At the site in 1946, Oliver “Chick” Hooper launched Hooper Concrete Pipe Co. which manufactured concrete pipe for irrigation, sewers, storm drains, culverts, and aqueducts. The company would go on to create the strongest, highest-quality pipes that were used in vital aqueducts supplying water to much of the Southwest. How did Oliver Hooper go from a humble Midwest childhood to becoming the go-to guy for pipe in the region? Born in 1902, Oliver Hooper grew up with two sisters and two brothers playing tackle football without padding on frozen ground in Wisconsin and South Dakota. “Broken shoulder bones were quite common,” said Bill Hooper, Oliver’s son. “Coal dust on the white ice marked the field boundaries.” The three brothers went to college at Washington D.C., with the oldest, Lee, studying law. While attending George Washington University, Hooper earned money as a telephone operator on Capitol Hill, taking calls for the White

actor & Community Image courtesy of Arizona Contr

House and Congressional offices. “My dad and brother, Al, then decided to go west to California,” Bill said. “They had a tired Ford Model T and left in the dead of winter from Wisconsin.” The two brothers navigated the primitive two-lane

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highways using road signs and an atlas, and camped in a makeshift tent. They arrived in Los Angeles in 1927, and got a boost by selling the patent for an invention Al had developed: a snap-on irrigation valve that’s still used on golf courses. “The two were very accomplished surveyors and land-development engineers, as they had to make their way doing that while Lee was getting his law degree,” Bill said. “They surveyed a great number of Los Angeles

Right: Oliver Hooper in 1955. Left: Company advertisement, 1946.

MAY-JUN 2019

Image courtesy of Chuck Runbeck

subdivisions and started doing golf courses as a specialty.” Oliver Hooper spent almost the next two decades in supervising and engineering positions. During World War II he constructed concrete runways for the U.S. Army Air Corps and expanded Fort Ord in California and Fort Huachuca in Arizona. From 1943-1944, Hooper worked as a general superintendent and estimating engineer for Vinson and Pringle Construction Company in Phoenix. After acquiring and

selling his interest in Arizona Concrete Pipe Co. in 1944, he launched Hooper Pipe. Hooper’s plant started in a 125-by-40foot building, manufacturing concrete pipe from a few to 60 inches in diameter. Bill worked for his father at the plant during summer breaks from 1949 to 1951, and then for a few years full-time. Bill’s favorite memory is Hooper giving each employee a free turkey for Thanksgiving and Christmas. “I remember this mostly because when I was employed there, the task of getting

about 125 turkeys from the local supplier into a truck and transporting them to the office usually fell to me,” Bill said. Hooper’s nephew and Bill’s cousin, Chuck Runbeck, also started at Hooper Pipe in 1949. “I used to stand out there in the back with hoses because all the pipe needed to be watered down. It was a long and messy job,” he chuckled. Runbeck was impressed by Hooper. “He was a very respected person because he was straight with everybody,” he says. Arizona Contractor & Community

Top left: Hooper semi-truck loaded with pipe for delivery, 1953. Bottom left: Hooper employees working, late 1940s. Bottom right: Hooper Pipe installing 48-inch discharge storm pipe at the Naval Air Station Litchfield Park, 1953.

700-foot head of force, while ordinary cast pipe like that used for irrigation, would only withstand a 25 or 30-foot head. Hooper wrote a letter to his employees in 1956, detailing his merger with American Pipe and Construction Company (aka

Images courtesy of Bill Hooper

pipe replaced the method of cementing sections of pipe together by instead using a Runbeck recalled a time in 1953 when he rubber gasket that would withstand the and his wife had just started their own same high pressures as the pipe itself. business, and money was tight. Hooper had Testing proved the pipe could handle a lunch with him and noticed Runbeck’s car was missing a door on its passenger side. After lunch, Hooper took him to a nearby used-car lot and bought him another vehicle. “It was in a lot better shape than the piece of junk I had,” Runbeck said. “It was just the type of man he was.” Hooper expanded the plant in 1952 and introduced a new high-pressure pipe that he called the strongest in the country. The new

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MAY-JUN 2019

Ameron), which had plants in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Portland, Dallas, and several South American countries. “They expect everyone, including myself, to continue in their present capacity,” he wrote. “I feel that the Hooper Concrete Pipe Co., under the new ownership, will be able to expand and progress much faster and give us all a greater opportunity for advancement in the future.” Ameron requested that Hooper move to California as vice president and manager of the Hooper Concrete Pipe subsidiary to oversee the Metropolitan Water District Siphon Project. The objective was a $200 million expansion program that would bring additional water into Southern California through the Colorado River Aqueduct. The general manager and chief engineer of the Metropolitan Water District declared it “one of the largest engineering, pipe fabrication and installation projects ever to be undertaken in Southern California,” in an article in Colorado River Aqueduct News in 1957. Hooper was responsible for transporting and installing 63,000 feet of the largest pipe sections ever manufactured: 16-foot long pipe segments weighing 68 tons each (for more details, see BTOP, page 42). “The board of directors was skeptical concerning the ‘handling’ of these gigantic pipe joints and remarked that nothing this massive had ever been routinely manufactured and delivered to the job site for installation,” Bill said. “Even one joint on a semi-trailer would exceed the weight limit for the highways along the proposed route.” The initial question was how would the joints be tipped horizontally for transportation and installation. When called to a board meeting, Hooper requested a water glass, string, and scissors. He demonstrated how the project would be carried out by tying the string around the center of the water glass, with two pieces hanging at each side. “Picking up most of the weight of the glass, he then pulled it slowly over using the side strings and lowered it gently to the table,” Bill said. Hooper’s point: A Cat D8 Sideboom with the boom straight up could safely lift and walk with 120,000 pounds; a Cat on each side could lift and tip the joint. The board then wondered how the pipes could be laid in trenches with enough accuracy to connect the gaskets between each joint. Hooper described a vehicle that would crawl through the horizontal pipe joints, then raise each one off the ground and into position. Then, precision hydraulics would make final adjustments to align

the pipe gaskets. Thus, the “Pipemobile” was born. “He got this idea from lifting heavy furniture at home by crawling under a dining room table, for example, and then proceeding to move the load to a new location by raising up his back to lift the table,” Bill said. By the end of Hooper’s demonstration, the board knew he was the right person for the job. Hooper later managed pipeline projects in Trinidad, Mexico, Japan, Australia, and South America before retiring. In 2002, Bill sent a letter to the White House, requesting a note for his father’s

100th birthday. A delayed, but much appreciated greeting was received: “Happy Birthday! Laura joins me in sending best wishes for your 100th birthday. You have led a remarkable life that is great in accomplishments and great in years! We join your family and friends in wishing you a wonderful celebration. May you be surrounded by the warmth of happy memories and secure in the knowledge that you have made this world a better place.” George W. Bush.

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Images courtesy of Bill Hooper

Building on the Past 1957: Colorado River Aqueduct Siphon Project


outhern California, always thirsty for more Colorado River water, contracted to double the capacity of the Metropolitan Water District’s aqueduct in 1957. The district, a regional wholesaler that provides water to six California counties, sought to bring the Colorado River Aqueduct up to its full capacity by adding 47 inverted underground siphons along the 183-mile canal. When completed, the project transported 1.163 billion gallons of water per day. The aqueduct was initially built in the 1930s and early 1940s, and most siphons were designed to be constructed as two parallel pipes. To save money, only one siphon was built, as the district believed the second siphon would not be needed until 1980. However, rapid growth in Southern California expedited the need for additional siphons. American Pipe & Construction Co. won a $16 million contract for the project, including manufacturing almost 4,000

16-foot long, 68-ton segments of pipe that had a nearly 16-foot outer diameter. The pre-cast reinforced concrete pipe sections were connected with rubber gasket joints. The company built a semi-portable materials plant near the community of Morongo Valley to construct pipe for all the siphons west of the Eagle Mountain pump lift, which is located 50 miles east of Indio. The plant was then moved to a location near the community of Rice to complete work on the eastern section of the aqueduct. The 47 siphons, which vary in length from 73 to 15,400 feet, carry water beneath drainage channels, canyons, washes and other depressions. The longest siphon crosses a depression near Rice. The siphons connect various sections of the above-ground aqueduct, which consist of 92 miles of tunnels, 63 miles of concrete-lined canals, and 54 miles of concrete conduits.

Arizona Contractor & Community

The Height of a Three-Story Building:

tion districts, and recharge projects in Maricopa, Pima, and Pinal counties. To manage the nation’s most expensive water system, the Central Arizona Water Conservation District was organized in 1971. The district maintains and delivers CAP’s 1.5 million acre-feet of water, which is more than half of Arizona’s total Colorado River allotment, and is responsible for repaying $1.65 billion which required specific fabrication and a of the project’s total $4 billion cost. CAP water was first delivered to the specially built vehicle to move. Despite these achievements, the project had mixed Harquahala Valley Irrigation District, west of Phoenix in 1985 and results. Due to unfore“The flow is like seeing to Tucson in 1993. The seen challenges, the siphons needed repair a 3,000 basketballs rolling aqueduct was completed in 1994 and supplies little more than a decade by every second” nearly 500 billion gallons after installation. How did of water annually, as it this record-setting pipe, built locally by Ameron, Inc., come to cre- crosses western Arizona to Phoenix before ate a potentially catastrophic problem for heading south to Tucson. Massive pumps lift water more than 2,900 vertical feet over the CAP? The CAP came into existence when its course and are proof that water runs President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the uphill if you provide enough energy: CAP is Colorado River Basin Project Act in 1968. the largest power user in Arizona. “The flow is like seeing 3,000 basketThe legislation funded the project that provides water to Arizona tribes, cities, irriga- balls rolling by every second,” Marcus Sha-

Ameron’s CAP Pipe Douglas Towne


Images courtesy of Arizona Contractor & Community

hen a construction project can be seen from outer space, there’s a good chance it has some record-setting components. That’s the case with the Central Arizona Project (CAP), an intricate system of canals, tunnels, pipelines, and pumping stations that transports Colorado River water 336 miles uphill to Central and Southern Arizona. At the time of construction, it was the longest single water transportation project ever undertaken in the U.S. One of the CAP’s crucial designs was the use of inverted siphons where the system crossed significant drainages. The underground siphons were constructed from the most massive pipe of its kind,


MAY-JUN 2019

piro, CAP water systems supervisor, says. Construction of the CAP started in 1970 with the intake for Colorado River water, the Havasu Pumping Plant at Lake Havasu. Soon after, activity shifted to the 190-mile Granite Reef Aqueduct portion of the CAP project. This comprised an 80-foot wide concrete-lined canal that carried the highest flow of water in the system from the Colorado River to Phoenix. The aqueduct crossed seven major river beds and washes using 24 ½ -foot diameter inverted underground siphons that were installed from 1975-1980. Six of seven siphons, ranging in length from one-quarter mile to almost two miles in length, were constructed from what was at the time, the largest circular pre-cast structures ever manufactured. They were about the height of a threestory building, and were manufactured by American Pipe and Construction Co. (aka Ameron). The company was headquartered in Monterey Park, CA, but the $25 million siphon project was constructed by Ameron Pipe Products Southwest division, located on 50 acres south of Interstate 17, at 2325 South Seventh Street. The pipes were so large that concrete Left: CAP pipe installation, 1979. batch plants were built on location and Top right: Ameron and Kiewit disassembled upon completion of a

employees by CAP pipe, 1979. Right: CAP proposed route and additional dams, 1963.

ment. Plant No. 1 was located 40 miles northwest of Phoenix and supplied pipe for siphons underneath the Agua Fria, Hassayampa and New rivers, and Centennial, and Jackrabbit washes. Plant No. 2 was located northeast of Scottsdale by Granite Reef Dam and supplied pipe for the siphon beneath the Salt River. Ameron moved the manufacturing equipment from Farmington, NM, where it had been used to proArizona Contractor & Community

Image courtesy of Arizona Contractor & Community


MAY-JUN 2019

“A LeTourneau 700 pipe-lift­ing machine was built to transport the pipes.”

Ameron’s special pipe transporting machine dubbed, “the Pipemobile,” 1979.

Arizona Contractor & Community

duce concrete pipe for the Navajo Irrigation Project, according to an article in the Arizona Republic in 1975. The pipe was composed of pre-cast, pre-stressed concrete sections that were wrapped with steel wire and sprayed with a thin coating of mortar to protect it from handling and corrosion effects. The sections were 22-feet long, weighed 225 tons, and had a capacity of 57,000 gallons. About 4.3 miles of pipe, or 1,080 segments, were required by the prime contractor, Peter Kiewit Sons’ Co. of Omaha, NE. The pipe sections were so massive that a huge

“Pipemobile,” a LeTourneau 700 pipe-lifting machine, was built by Marathon Steel Co. to transport them for placement. The pipes, however, turned out to be better for skateboarding then delivering water (see “Riding the Biggest Pipes,” p. 50). In 1990, the 1.9-mile-long siphon underneath the Agua Fria River was discovered to have corroded reinforcement wire around the pipe; the line could explode from water pressure, according to a 1990 Republic article. By 1992, all six siphons built by Ameron were failing, which led the Central Arizona

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Water Conservation District to file a $146.7 million lawsuit against Ameron, Kiewit, and Colorado Fuel & Iron of Pueblo, CO, which had supplied the reinforcement wire. CAP had been making temporary repairs but replacing the pipes was estimated to cost more than $146 million. The lawsuit was dismissed by a judge, according to a 1994 Republic article. Three siphons were to be replaced by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation while the other three were to be kept in service through heavy maintenance. Steel pipe manufactured by Phoenix-based Schuff Steel Co. was installed as new siphons beneath the Agua Fria and Salt rivers, while the siphon at New River was replaced with a cast-inplace concrete pipe. “At each site, the original pipe was left intact and buried adjacent to the new replacement pipe,” Darrin Francom, CAP director of operations and engineering, says. “The Agua Fria and Salt River siphons both have much higher water pressure than the remainder of our siphons and this is why they were replaced and the other remaining siphons that had the Ameron pre-stressed concrete pipe (Centennial, Jackrabbit, and Hassayampa) were left as originally constructed.” Ameron and Kiewit retained Exponent Engineering and Scientific Consulting to determine the cause of the pre-stressed concrete pipe failures. Exponent concluded the problem was the result of chloride transport and concentration, supplied from pipe leaks, saline soil, and groundwater fluctuations. “Neither the mortar nor the pre-stressing wire was defective, nor were any mortar or wire defects necessary to cause the observed wire failures in the high-chloride environment that developed over time,” according to www.exponent. com/experience/central-arizona-pipe/ Based on Exponent’s investigation, the lawsuit was settled for a fraction of the initial claim. The pipe company, now called NOV Ameron, continues in business today. However, Ameron closed its Phoenix manufacturing plant in 2011, laying off 112 employees because of a slowdown in activity. “ Like a lot of companies, they have moved their operations to Mexico or overseas,” says Stan Gray, who worked as a welder and operated the cylindrical pipe machine out of the 383 Union Hall at Ameron in the early 1970s. “They manufactured a lot of pipe for the mines in their heyday, and shipped a lot of product to Saudi Arabia,” he adds.

MAY-JUN 2019

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eton Images courtesy of Steve Pingl

hat did teenagers do before the internet and cell phones? For many of us growing up in the Valley in the 1970s, the answer is skateboarding. The sport was becoming more exciting because of improved equipment, such as urethane wheels, sealed bearings, and stronger, lighter boards. I spent countless hours riding around Metrocenter on my Sims board listening to JFA (Jodie Foster’s Army), my favorite hard-core punk band. Skateboarding magazines were trendy then, and I lived to read them cover-tocover each month to learn new tricks. Guys in California, way before the X-Games, were starting to ride skateboards in empty swimming pools, which later became known as “bowl riding” or “vertical skating.” In Arizona, we rapidly learned to carve and kick turn and do aerial moves and tricks in the empty pools. But here, however, we had something huge that California skaters didn’t have, giant cement pipes out in the desert being built for the Central Arizona Project (CAP). The 336-mile aqueduct crosses western Arizona to Phoenix before heading south to Tucson, supplying nearly 500 billion gallons of water annually. Where the CAP crossed a significant watercourse, the Colorado River water was routed underneath, through 24 ½-foot diameter concrete pipes. The tubes were manufactured on-site by Ameron Pipe. The CAP was an engineering marvel, but to me, it was a skateboarder’s dream. In high school, I wrote Ameron telling them I was doing a report on the CAP and asked for information on the project. They sent me maps, brochures, and stickers. Thus, my friends and I were able to follow the development of each siphon installation and skateboard in their large concrete sections. The first project was by Lake Pleasant, near a popular party spot called “the Flumes,” where people

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Riding the Biggest Pipes:

Ameron’s Massive CAP Siphons Steve “Ping” Pingleton

Right: John Pingleton skating on the giant Ameron pipes at the CAP Hassayampa project, 1979. Left: Steve Pingleton skating in a Phoenix pool, 1978. MAY-JUN 2019

“[Ameron’s pipes] were perfect, like skating on glass, so smooth and endless.”

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Image courtesy of Steve Pingleton

The CAP was an engineering marvel, but to me, it was a skateboarder’s dream.

Newly cast pipe sections next to the Ameron plant for the CAP Hassayampa project, 1979.

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went tubing on the Beardsley Canal Flume. Pro skaters from California started visiting and showed us how to ride the pipes. This was about 1976-1977, and it was good times; there was no security. Our exploits made it into the top trade magazines such as Skateboarder, Skateboard World, and Action Now, and a few movies, including Skateboard Madness and Skateboard Kings. Beeline was the next section of piping to be constructed, around 1978. The site was located near the Beeline Dragway on the Salt River just downstream of the Granite Reef Diversion Dam. The construction was on Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community land, so we only skateboarded there a few times. The next project was west of the Valley, across the Hassayampa River in 1979. There, we went into the Ameron plant to skate on the fresh new pipes, before they were moved to the river. We had many wild adventures there, including successive days when our group wound up in the emergency room. The first day, a high school friend who had just received his learner’s permit borrowed his dad’s brand-new station wagon to drive out to the desert pipes. Once he turned off I-10 onto the dirt roads, he got crazy and did a slide doing about 60 mph. We hit a ditch, and the car rolled three times, trashing the vehicle. The driver dislocated his shoulder and went into shock, while my back was messed up. Our friends hiked three miles back to the freeway to get help. The next day, we headed out again with the same crew minus the driver in my crappy old car. We discovered numerous professional skateboarders riding there, including Rick Blackhart, Steve “Salba” Alba, and Doug Schneider. I remember Schneider, with a cast on his broken wrist, going so high on the pipe, like 10:30, and bailing off like it was nothing, like 18 feet in the air. OMG! Then another friend took a damn pipe crack wrong and slammed so hard it knocked his helmet off. The fall created a huge cut that was bleeding badly above his eye. He couldn’t even remember his own name. So instead of having an epic pipe session, we had another trip to the emergency room. One of the final Ameron projects we rode was at Centennial Wash in 1979-1980, located west of the Valley about halfway to California. This installation was so remote that it initially lacked security. We camped there a few times, swam in the canals, and skated in the pipe plant at will. We even

made friends with the security guard and, once, drank beers with him. There were a couple more pipe projects, one in Florence under the Gila River about 1981, and one in downtown Phoenix about 1984. Ameron, however, didn’t make these pipes and they weren’t nearly as good for skateboarding. Ameron formed their pipes with rebar vertically in molds, poured the concrete, and a huge winch would turn them on their sides once they were dry. They were perfect, like skating on glass, so smooth and endless. Once they were dry, a specially

constructed “Pipemobile” would back up into a pipe section, jack it up, and move it to the trenches where it went under the river. I was bummed to learn that Ameron closed its Phoenix manufacturing plant, as I was a big fan of their products. It’s the end of an era; their CAP pipes were truly legendary for us skateboarders. Thanks, Ameron! For more desert pipe images subscribe to my YouTube channel “AZPing”.

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Architect’s Perspective: Clifton: Arizona’s Unknown Architectural Treasure Mark C. Vinson, FAIA/AICP


Images courtesy of Author

enry Clifton, Mason Greenlee, and other prospectors began searching for gold and silver along the San Francisco River north of its confluence with the Gila River after the creation of Arizona Territory in 1863. However, it was Robert Metcalf, an Army scout, who discovered copper deposits during the pursuit of a band of Apache Indians in the late 1860s. Metcalf recruited his brother and nephews to stake claims in the area, but mining proved difficult due to the remote location, lack of capital, and conflicts with the native population, including Geronimo who is believed to have been born near present-day Clifton in the late 1820s. The Metcalfs sought backing from Silver City, New Mexico businessmen Charles and Henry Lesinsky, who, along with their uncle, Jules Freudenthal, acquired the Metcalf claims and several others in the area. By 1873, they were mining veins of readily accessible copper and had built a crude smelter at the confluence of Chase Creek and the San Francisco River. Henry erected the camp’s first permanent building, “La Casa Grande,” a multi-roomed adobe in the Sonoran style, which included a store and Lesinsky’s residence. By 1880, William Church had established the Detroit Copper Company nearby in what would become

Morenci. Other mining activities were located in Metcalf, four miles north along Chase Creek. Mining operations would not attract increased investment, however, until the arrival of the railroad in the early 1880s, combined with Geronimo’s surrender in 1886. Ironically, the Lesinskys had grown weary and sold their holdings to a Kansas City entrepreneur in 1882, who soon re-sold them to a group of investors from Edinburgh, Scotland, organized as the Arizona Copper Company (ACC). Among the administrators and engineers sent to the

remote camp was James Colquhoun. His innovations allowed porphyry ore of a lower grade to be mined and processed profitably. This new investment of capital and expertise resulted in operations and community development on a much grander scale, with the ACC becoming Clifton’s primary economic engine before 1900. Meanwhile, East Coast copper importer Phelps, Dodge & Co. (PD) had acquired the Detroit Copper Company, as well as nearly all other holdings in the area not already owned by the ACC. PD intensified the development of the Morenci townsite in the early 1900s, retaining noted Southwestern architect Henry Trost to design several prominent company and community buildings. The population became more diverse as it grew. Spanish, Italian, Chinese and Scottish immigrants arrived to toil alongside the original German-Jews, Mexicans, and American Southerners in the mines and smelters or service the needs of those who did. The earliest permanent residences in Clifton, mostly traditional Sonoran adobe structures, were built near the ACC smelter in the camp’s center. The community’s first distinct residential district, a level area between the surrounding cliffs and the river to the north, was home to many ACC employees. Imported materials and styles first appeared here and along the east side of the camp.

Top: Drawing of Clifton Bath House. Left: Drawing of Clifton High School. seventy

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Top: Greenlee Courthouse. Right: Chase Creek Historic District.

The first commercial district developed along Conglomerate Avenue (“East Side”), across the river and opposite the ACC concentrators and smelter. Lesinsky had built his store here, near several other commercial buildings, with homes clinging to the adjacent mountainside. Businessman Henry Hill laid out a spacious addition to the south of the original townsite in 1901, allowing for construction of additional homes, schools, and commercial buildings, most in Victorian Transitional, Neoclassical or Arts and Crafts styles. The Greenlee County courthouse, designed by local architect E.C. Heck, was constructed on property donated by Hill in 1911. Hill’s Addition (“South Clifton”) soon became the community’s most fashionable neighborhood. By 1909, the Chase Creek District along Copper Avenue (Chase Creek Street) west of the smelter and parallel to the creek itself, had become the primary commercial center. Clifton, and the Chase Creek District, in particular, was said to be as rough and rowdy as any Southwest town, complete with brawls, labor disputes, and shoot-outs. In April 1913, a fire destroyed most of the district’s wood-frame structures. A building boom followed, fueled by high copper prices and a robust economy. Many new Commercial Victorian buildings were constructed of brick, several by the Spezia Brothers, Italian immigrants. Today, those adjacent storefronts form the most intact

stretch of late territorial / early statehood architecture in the state. Other significant buildings of the era were the ACC General Offices (1906-1910) and Arizona & New Mexico Railway Passenger Depot (1913), designed by company engineers; the opulent ACC General Manager’s Residence (1913); as well as the Neoclassical Clifton High School (1912 – demolished c1990) and Town Hall (1920), designed by local architect Duncan McNeil. Hurt by double taxation by the U.S. and Great Britain, and suffering from the post-World War I slump in copper prices, ACC sold all their holdings to PD on January 1, 1922. PD eventually acquired all housing and commercial buildings in Morenci, although Clifton proper remained substantially privately-owned. Smelting and refining operations remained in Clifton until the Great Depression, after which new facilities were constructed in Morenci. Now the corporate “step-town,” virtually all development ceased in Clifton for the next 70 years. The sole exception was a 1928 bath house and pool near the river on the east side, designed in the Spanish Colonial Revival style. The project was funded by local investors in the hope of attracting tourists to enjoy the natural mineral hot springs. The ensuing depression made short work of their dream of a diversified economy, although the building later housed a succession of

uses and the pool was opened to public use. Long plagued by floods and labor strikes, the town was devastated by a bitter strike in 1982 and a flood of unprecedented magnitude the following year. It has never fully recovered, although a federal flood-control project has added a measure of protection. Hope springs eternal, however. The Clifton Town Site Historic District and several individual properties have been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and a Historic Preservation Commission appointed. Residents, business owners, the Greenlee County Historical Society and the Town of Clifton remain dedicated to preserving their architectural and cultural heritage while attempting to generate new sources of economic vitality in this remote, little-known treasure of a town. Mark Vinson, guest architectural columnist, is a Registered Architect and Certified Planner and native of the Clifton/Morenci mining district. Arizona Contractor & Community

Digging Through the Archives: Bryant Shaw William Horner


hen Arizona Contractor & Community magazine hosted a retirement party for Chuck Runbeck in 2018, Bryant Shaw came by to wish Chuck all the best and show him some copies of Chuck’s previous publication, Southwest Contractor. Shaw also brought a scrapbook of construction projects that he had worked on throughout his long, illustrious career. This is where I learned about Shaw’s work

involving underground utilities. I first met Shaw through Bob Collins, as they both currently work for Specialty Companies Group. Shaw’s title at the company is “Estimator of Special Projects,” which indicates his experience and skill in the contracting field. He is a quiet and humble guy with plenty of construction knowledge. A Flagstaff native, Shaw moved with his family to Phoenix in late 1959, where his father, William C. Shaw, worked a suc-

cession of different construction jobs. He first became a laborer and pipe layer with Sunair Contracting in 1960, and later worked for J.H. Welsh & Son Co., and Wittman Contracting. During the mid-1970s, William Shaw started his own underground company, Sun Valley Pipeline, doing smaller projects, which turned into Precision Pipeline Inc. Following in his father’s footsteps, Bryant Shaw took an interest in under- Top left: Parsons ladder ground construc- trenchers belong to tion. In the sev- Hexagon Contracting at a Dave Brown Homes enth grade, he subdivision in Gilbert, 1992.

Images courtesy of Bryant Shaw

Top right: Chris Meyers after operating a Vermeer rock trencher, 1984. Below: Employees celebrate at Pipeline Specialists Christmas party in 1984.

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Top left: Pipeline Specialists demoing a Case 580D backhoe on a John F. Long subdivision at 67th Ave. and Osborn Rd., 1982. Below left: Dean Rude and Shaw (L-R) at the Pipeline Specialists Christmas party, 1979. Below: FOB Construction uses a 255 Parsons ladder trencher to install sewer lines at 71st Ave and Buckeye Rd., 1988.

entered the underground trade working with his father on weekends. After graduating from high school, Shaw continued fulltime in 1979 with Pipeline Specialists, Inc. (PSI), laying concrete pipe in subdivisions. A highlight of that work was when a brand-new Case backhoe was brought out for a demo. “The machine was so new it didn’t even have model numbers and letters assigned yet,” Shaw recalls. While at PSI, Shaw made the transition from working out of a pickup to behind a desk when he became an estimator, bidding underground utility projects. Besides PSI, Shaw has worked for

other underground companies, including C.E.O Construction Co., T.E.D. (Trench Excavating Ditching), Inc., F.O.B Construction, Shiya-Strephans Contracting, NU Western Construction, Riggs Engineering, and Team Fishel. Shaw even had a connection to my family in his scrapbook. While working for Hexagon Contracting on a job in Gilbert during the early 1990s, Shaw met my Uncle Dan. Shaw asked him if he could take a break from building house pads and backfill some pipe for the underground crew. There’s photographic proof of their work together in the scrapbook.

Like most generational construction workers, Shaw’s most significant influence is his father, William C. Shaw. “Other mentors were my father’s main pipelayers, Bobby Drew and Tony Caupacino,” he says. “Ed Scott taught me how to operate the backhoe, and Jim Singleton also was a great mentor.”

Above: Hexagon Contracting’s pipe crew after work, 1995. Top right: Danny Horner running a 140G blade backfilling pipe for Hexagon Contracting in Gilbert, 1992. Right: Installing laser controls on a 255 Parsons ladder trencher for Pipeline Specialists on 32nd St. north of Bell Rd., mid 1980s.

Arizona Contractor & Community

Bid Results

Past Project Awards May-Jun 1950

03/28/19 FY19 Sidewalk Repairs AZ Western Contracting $262,863

03/13/19 (CMAR) Ernest Love Airport Terminal Fann Contracting $10,000,000

Farmer & Godfrey Co., Phoenix $83,444 Construction of New Laundry Arizona State Hospital

03/25/19 Sunset Lane Improvement, Prescott Asphalt Paving & Supply $5,913,313

03/08/19 Maricopa I-40 Rural Safety Stormwater Plans SWP $337,733

H.L. Royden, Phoenix $305,282 20 Miles of New Road Between Tucson and Ajo

03/25/19 (CMAR) Crossroads East Infrastructure Haydon Building Corp. $15,000,000

03/08/19 Bob Stump Memorial CS Construction Inc. $4,360,420

Daley Construction Co., Phoenix $140,446 Road Improvements Ash Fork-Flagstaff Highway

03/22/19 Topock Kingman Hwy InterMountain West $1,288,534

03/08/19 Topock Kingman Ash Fork Crookton Cactus Asphalt $1,092,639

H.L. Royden, Phoenix $42,584 New 3-Span Girder Bridge Over Zuni River N. of St. Johns

03/22/19 Statewide Meteor Crater Fann Contracting $5,896,610

03/08/19 Ash Fork Flagstaff Hwy A 1 Mtn Rd Paveco Inc $909,817

Arizona Sand & Rock Co., Phoenix $13,654 Paving 17th Ave and Camelback Rd.

03/22/19 Price Freeway Pulice Construction $68,657,777

03/06/19 Wastewater LS Improvements Kinney Construction Services $1,923,094

J.H. Welsh & Son, Phoenix $89,867 New Sewer Lines Safford

03/21/19 Gurley St Water Main Replacement Kinney Construction Services $882,490

03/06/19 Linda Lane Waterline Replacement Lincoln Constructors $389,681

Pioneer Constructors, Tucson $91,489 Grading and Drainage Geronimo-Solomonsville

03/19/19 West Anthem Water Improvement Hunter Contracting Co. $7,938,979

02/28/19 Southern/Greenfield Rd Improvement Blucor $5,310,247

Sundt Construction Co., Tucson $289,859 New Sewage Disposal Plant Nogales Water Commission

03/18/19 Copper Flower Bike Boulevard Sturgeon Electric Company Inc. $357,350

02/27/19 91st Ave Improvements Paveco Inc $430,615

Daley Construction, Phoenix $275,810 New Water/Sewer Lines Sky Harbor Airport

03/14/19 Willow Lake Rd Improvements Asphalt Paving & Supply $474,747

02/26/19 Manhole Protection Scholz $261,600

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