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Preserving a Piece of Los Angeles History The new Los Angeles State Historic Park transforms an industrial brownfield into a world-class green space that provides a place to play, unwind, and explore the city’s rich history. One of the first Los Angeles train depots, the Southern Pacific Railroad River Station, opened in 1876 and included a wooden depot building, roundhouse, turntable, repair shops, and a hotel. River Station was considered the Ellis Island of Los Angeles, because it was the major gateway to the west, allowing goods and settlers to flow between Los Angeles and San Francisco, as well as the rest of the nation and world during the land boom of the 1880s. Over the years, the station became dormant, the rail yard was removed, and the lot grew vacant. The State of California eventually acquired the property in 2001 with plans to create a park to honor its rich history. Funds were allocated, but the project was placed on hold when the recession hit. Finally, a pared-down redevelopment plan was agreed upon, allowing the state to move forward with the new park. Flanked on all sides by an existing development in the Chinatown area, Metro Gold Line railroad tracks, the Los Angeles River, and major public thoroughfares, the new 32-acre Los Angeles State Historic Park is a tribute to the city’s history and recreates much of the local environment before it was developed. The park is adjacent to the oldest standing industrial buildings in Los Angeles—the Flatiron

A view of the new Los Angeles State Historic Park.

Building (1890) and the Capitol Milling Company Building (1883). Also in the neighborhood is Dodger Stadium to the north. Park amenities include a vernal pool and wetlands, welcome pavilion, citrus grove, river interpretive station and park ranger stations, walking trails, and picnic areas. There is also a space designated for outdoor concerts. All public facilities are fully accessible and include telescopes that offer views of the city and surrounding neighborhood. Information about the park’s place in Los Angeles and California history is on display, from its time as a Spanish mission in the early 1700s to its railroad robber baron days, when land prospecting and the lawlessness of the Wild West was at its height. Archaeological finds, such as the recently discovered 1781 Zanja Madre irrigation system that diverted (continued on page 2)

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a portion of the Los Angeles River to what was then the new Los Angeles Pueblo, are also among the many features.

A portion of the Los Angeles Historic Park, prior to construction, that overlooks downtown Los Angeles.

As prime consultant for the $18 million project, BergerABAM provided design and construction management of the site infrastructure and development, including civil engineering, stormwater analysis, low-impact design methods, sustainability, and structural design for five pedestrian bridges. The project team also provided oversight of the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing for the welcome pavilion and ranger station

buildings. Bioretention swales and approximately 500 trees were installed. Improvements to Spring Street and Baker Street fronting the park were made for pedestrian, transit, and vehicle access. Special environmental consideration was taken in regard to the vernal pool, which—though shallow and occasionally dry—contains certain animals, such as fairy shrimp, whose life-cycle and proliferation are intimately tied to the seasonal wet and dry weather in the area. Care was also taken to ensure proper earthwork, consideration of existing development, and any findings that on-site archeologists might discern could contribute to the site’s historical records. Artifacts were uncovered during construction that dated back to the 1800s, including dishware, ink bottles, and oil lamps, concurrent with the site’s origins. “This project uncovered more unforeseen archeological features than most projects, which creates challenges during construction to keep the features intact even when buried,” said Project Manager Jeff Cross. “The crew unearthed the footings from the old Pacific Hotel from 1878 that once served River Station passengers, so we redesigned utilities to avoid the area.” The Los Angeles State Historic Park provides park visitors an opportunity to engage in the past, present, and future of Los Angeles. Final construction of the park is slated for early 2016.

Pier 3 Upgrade Recognized for Engineering Advancement The Port of Tacoma receives the Facilities Engineering Award for its $15.45 million upgrade to Pier 3. BergerABAM was selected to upgrade the Port of Tacoma’s Pier 3 in 2012, which is a marginal wharf and part of the Husky Container Terminal. The pier, originally constructed in 1987, was designed for 70,000-ton container vessels and 64-foot-gauge cranes, with the potential to accommodate larger cranes in the future. Though Pier 3 had been designed for 100-foot-gauge cranes in the 1980s, the pier’s capacity was not sufficient for the latest generation of cranes that work 24-container-wide


super-post-Panamax vessels. Therefore, substantial improvements to the pier had to be made for the larger cranes, while accommodating the adjacent tenant operations and maritime functions. Because the Pier 3 upgrade was the first phase in a long-term terminal modernization plan that included rebuilding and realigning the adjacent Pier 4, the plan had to consider terminal operations during Pier 4’s rebuild and integration. In addition,

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environmental permits dictated a narrow in-water work window. BergerABAM’s advanced methods in design and work planning within the in-water work windows, and reuse of existing infrastructure to minimize demolition at fender locations, showed that the sequence of work—when properly planned—would not negatively impact the overall schedule. In addition to American Association of Port Authorities’ Facilities Award, the project was also awarded the 2015 American Public Works Association’s Project of the Year Award for projects between $5 million and $25 million.

Pier 3 at the Port of Tacoma.

Safe Boulevard Project Wins Praise The Society of American Military Engineers recognized—and awarded—the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District, and BergerABAM for excellence in sustainability. On 16 October 2015, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District, and BergerABAM were awarded the 19th Annual Projects of Excellence Silver Award for Sustainability in the large business category for the Pendleton Avenue Widening and Multiway Boulevard project at Joint Base LewisMcChord (JBLM). Supporting more than 100,000 families and retirees, JBLM is considered the seventh largest city in Washington State and the largest employer in Pierce County, by far. In fact, it is the second largest employer in the state.

Inspired by multiway boulevards from Paris to Italy, to California, the Pendleton Avenue Widening and Multiway Boulevard project is one of only two multiway boulevards that currently exist in the state of Washington. The project’s over 7,100 linear feet of roadway improvements is center stage for a beautifully landscaped corridor reminiscent of European grand boulevards of past and present. Pendleton Avenue, as a “great street,” accommodates energy-efficient, mixed-use development, encourages safe walkability and livability, and intelligently meets the needs of a growing urban community.

Editors/Contributors Renée Stiehl

Sustainability improvements include rain gardens, pervious pavers, stormwater infiltration, LED lighting, pedestrian amenities, and a special focus on American with Disabilities Act improvements.

Pendleton Multiway Boulevard at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

In an effort to accommodate growth and improve livability at JBLM for military personnel and their families, the project team transformed the typical roadway into a six-lane multiway boulevard. This offers wide treelined sidewalks, provides separated

Karen Harbaugh Nora Bretana Lynn Enebrad Lauren Hurst Jana Roy Dee Young Design and Production Renée Stiehl To update your contact information, please e-mail


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bicycle facilities, and integrates many low impact development strategies. The BergerABM team provided project management, roadway design, landscape architecture, surveying, traffic planning and engineering, low impact development design and sustainability features, lighting, intersection design, antiterrorism and force protection requirements, utility relocation to existing buildings, and road and sidewalk upgrades. The BergerABAM team also included airfield clear zone and accident potential zone development restrictions, and provided construction phasing and support. Pendleton Multiway Boulevard ribbon cutting at JBLM.

Dan Shafar Recognized as Young Civil Engineer of the Year Shafar’s outstanding contributions to the civil engineering profession were recognized by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Oregon Section selected Dan Shafar as the 2015 Young Civil Engineer of the Year. Shafar was presented the award at the ASCE Oregon Section’s annual gala event held on 17 September 2015. The Young Civil Engineer of the Year award is presented to an individual, under the age of 35, who has been Dan Shafar an active member of the Oregon Section for at least the past five years. Candidates considered for the award demonstrate good character and integrity, exhibit a high level of technical competence, and help advance the profession of civil engineering. Contributions to public service outside of the engineering profession are also considered during the selection process.


Shafar has been with BergerABAM for over 3 years and has a total of 10 years of civil engineering experience spanning a wide range of projects largely associated with municipal and public agencyrelated work. He is experienced with site layout and planning for parks and recreation facilities. He has conducted utility master planning for water, wastewater, and drainage systems; and he has specific expertise with the hydraulic modeling of large-scale wastewater, combined sewer systems, and municipal water distribution systems. Shafar is also passionate about incorporating sustainable design elements into his work and has received his Envision Sustainability Professional certificate. Shafar has been actively involved in the Oregon Section, and more specifically the Southwest Washington branch, of ASCE during his professional career. He has been a member of ASCE since 2002 and began attending Oregon Section events shortly after

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moving to Vancouver, Washington, in 2007. Shafar has been serving as the secretary for the Southwest Washington branch since 2010. Shafar was nominated by Javier Moncada, engineering associate with Tualatin Valley Water District. When asked to comment on his nomination, he responded, “I nominated Dan Shafar for this award because of his years of dedication and service to the ASCE Southwest Washington branch and for his excellence to the civil engineering community. I thought his experience, work ethic, and passion for civil engineering in the region deserved major recognition. He is an inspiration to young engineers locally and nationally.”

Shafar served as civil engineer on the water transmission main phasing design project for the City of Hood River, Oregon.

Camp Parsons Dining Hall—Managing Design and Construction on a Tight Budget Founded in 1919 on the Hood Canal in Washington State, Camp Parsons has hosted generations of Boy Scouts and scouting activities for the past 96 years. In September 2015, Camp Parsons was featured as the Project of the Week in the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce. As scouting and the Boy Scouts of America organization has grown, the old dining facility that was built in 1937 could no longer accommodate the needs of an ever-growing population of scouts. At 4,600 square feet, it could only seat 350 people at a time. In 2015, the Chief Seattle Council of the Boy Scouts of America decided to demolish the old building and construct a larger, more modern facility. The project team banded together and worked on a tight schedule to tackle this project that also had a limited budget. These were just a couple of the challenges. The dining facility’s site also posed some challenges. It was built on the side of a hill, so the project team had to battle rainwater and pooling sediment on the site and prevent the water and sediment from discharging into Hood Canal. BergerABAM designed a swale to intercept the stormwater coming from the hillside into a catch basin to keep the water flow contained, then filtered it through geotechnical fabric before it could drain into the canal per Washington State’s Department of Ecology’s permit requirements. In addition, a rock retaining wall was designed to incorporate the existing natural bedrock, thereby avoiding the cost of creating an entirely independent wall and creating a more

natural-looking landscape that enhanced the outdoors theme of the camp and Boy Scouts activities. Despite these challenges and changes during construction, the project was completed within budget and on deadline, with a new dining facility that is now 14,500 square feet, seats 576, and has a full commercial kitchen. During the off-season, the hall can be rented to groups for outdoor education programs. To view the feature article in the Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce visit html?query=camp+parsons&searchtype=all.

The exterior of the Camp Parsons dining hall.


Profile for BergerABAM

Inside/Out Newsletter | Winter 2016 | Issue 60  

BergerABAM is a consulting firm offering services in the areas of planning, civil and structural engineering, architecture, environmental se...

Inside/Out Newsletter | Winter 2016 | Issue 60  

BergerABAM is a consulting firm offering services in the areas of planning, civil and structural engineering, architecture, environmental se...