CalContractor Specialty Contractor 2018

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Contractor Issue

Feature Articles 06


Celebrates Their Golden 50th Anniversary 1968-2018








From Sour to Sweet

Seepage System Key Component of Northern California Dam Reconstruction


Erects New 21st Century Asphalt Plant for City of Los Angeles






CalContractor Magazine / PUBLISHER: Kerry Hoover

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS: Brian Hoover Lindsay Paulson Steve Cooper


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ANNIVERSARY Above L to R: Steve Yurosek, President, Michael Crawford, CEO and Myron Sukut, Founder of Sukut Construction.


he California Gold Rush brought around 300,000 fortune seekers to the Golden State from all over the United States. In 1848 James W. Marshall discovered flakes of gold in the American River at the base of the Sierra Nevada Mountains near Coloma. This was one of the more significant events to shape American history, with more than 750,000 pounds of gold valued in excess of $2 billion being extracted from the area by 1952. Miners and prospectors throughout the United States borrowed money, mortgaged their property and did whatever it took to make the long, arduous journey to California in hopes of a better, more prosperous future. Gold, being one of Earth’s most precious metals, has long been associated with celebrating a marriage or honoring a business on its 50th anniversary.

The Gold Rush may be over, but the desire to take risks, work hard and prosper are still very much alive as entrepreneurs continue to chase the American dream. Sukut Construction is currently celebrating their Golden Anniversary, an achievement that only a limited amount of general civil engineering contractors can claim. 50 years, five decades, half a century. Any way you look at it a Quinquagenary, or 50th anniversary, is quite an achievement and merits a celebration of the first order. THE STARTUP Gold was selling for around $40 an ounce in 1968, while the average American was bringing home around $8,000 a year in income. The Beatles, ‘Hey Jude,’ was topping the charts, the Green Bay Packers were your Super Bowl Champions, and

The Planet of the Apes was one of the top-grossing films. It was a time of transformation and reflection, and things were beginning to change in America. For Myron Sukut and Dick Coulson, 1968 was also a time for consideration and opportunity. One year earlier, both men had been working for a reasonably large construction firm that moved a lot of dirt and Sukut’s responsibility was to manage all of its smaller jobs. During his four years with that company, Sukut used an outside contractor who owned a large spread of equipment. Sukut used this man on all his projects. “Chip Bittner, the equipment guy I was using, approached me one day with a question that caused me to stop and reflect,” says Sukut. “He asked me point-blank why I did not just skip the middleman and purchase his entire equipment fleet to go into business for

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR



Above: Mike Crawford, Myron Sukut, Mike Kelly, Jerry Pabbruwee, and Mary Shields celebrating Sukut's 30th Anniversary. Right: Myron Sukut and Mike Peak survey crew's progress at the Bluebird Canyon project in Laguna Beach.

myself." After thinking about it, Sukut responded by stating, “you get up every morning and probably throw up from all of the stress, while I, on the other hand, get a job started and go and have a nice lunch with a colleague and proceed to have a very nice day." Sukut also explained that he was not interested in working within the confines of an office building, to which the equipment owner responded, “why don’t you ask Dick Coulson to go in with you? He can run the office operations, while you attend to the outside job site duties." This idea was intriguing to Sukut. “I went in that very night, and when I saw Dick I told him that Bittner had decided that he and I should go into business together,” said Sukut. “His response was, ‘God, what a great idea,’ to which I said, ‘you gotta be kidding me.’ You see Dick had five or six children and was not really in a position to take a lot of risks, but he was more enthusiastic than I was and for the next year we talked about what we would do and how we would do it.” 8

Finally, in July 1968, the two men decided that they were going to take the plunge and give it their best shot. They went to the owner of Altfillisch- Fulton Construction, the company they had been working for, and announced that they would be leaving, but agreed to remain on to finish their current projects and allow time for the company to hire their replacements. “We stayed on for several months before leaving to go out on our own,” says Sukut. “I remember that we started our first project within the first two weeks and it was for a client that we had performed some work for at Altfillisch- Fulton. It was a small job, and at the time we were working almost exclusively on Saturdays and Sundays because the same independent contractors and operators we had always used were all working for other companies during the week. “Sukut also remembers his first public works job like it was yesterday.“ The job came along in December, and it was for the Los Angeles School District. We were charged with building an access road for the school

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

district, and this is when we brought in our first, real operating engineer foreman,” says Sukut. “He worked for me at AltfillischFulton and, from this point on, we began piling on the jobs, one after another.” When asked about early challenges, if there were any, Sukut replied, “yeah, making payroll, paying rent and the electricity bill. It was all tough as we were not heavily capitalized." Sukut remembers that there was a list of individuals who had told him they would be interested in backing any venture he was a part of. When the time came, they all suddenly had sick relatives or unforeseen circumstances where the funds just weren’t quite available. “We were fortunate in that when we went into business, there were 25 or 30 successful builders in Southern California that I knew either personally or was certain we could do work for,” says Sukut. “These were small, independent builders and that was our primary clientele. Things have [Continued on page 10]


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Above Left: Sukut working on the Wisteria project, a 120 MW solar plant on a 745-acre site in Calexico. Above: Sukut 241/261 Toll Road design-build project that include the grading and construction of a 26-mile long six-lane highway, which was completed under budget and one year ahead of schedule.

[Continued from page 8] changed since that time, as now there are only around four or five of these builders. The cost and entitlement processing has put the others out of business, and the landscape has changed dramatically.” THE NEXT GENERATION OF LEADERSHIP Mike Crawford is the CEO for Sukut Construction. He started his career with the company in 1980 with one semester left at California State University at Long Beach. “I had a buddy in one of my classes who worked for Myron, and he would always tell me about this cool, small company that he worked for where the owner actually talked to you, and everyone enjoyed the family atmosphere,” says Crawford. “He emphasized that everybody worked hard, but it was a cool place to be employed. That appealed to me, and I told my friend that if an opportunity ever arose, I would love to come work for Sukut. “As fate would have it, Crawford’s friend decided to leave to go 10

work for another company, and the folks at Sukut asked him to help find a replacement. “I became that replacement and worked as an intern for six months while I was in school and then when, I graduated, I interviewed at a variety of companies and ended up deciding to stay at Sukut,” says Crawford. “I started out doing takeoffs where I would be coloring up plans and measuring quantities, and then I became a project engineer, then an estimator, a project manager, superintendent, and then vice president and construction manager of operations in 1988. I have done just about every job available at the company over the past 38 years. I think I was the first project engineer at Sukut where there were formally only estimators and superintendents. Myron hired Tim Smith and me at around the same time, and we went and worked on projects and helped out the superintendents. It has been a great ride, and I look forward to many more years of service.”

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

Crawford was appointed chief executive officer in 1999 and, under his leadership, the company has forged new paths and has been honored with more than 30 top industry awards, including “Contractor of the Year” and “Best Place to Work.” He has also been President of the Southern California Contractors Association since 2003 and a member of the board of directors for numerous other associations, coalitions, funds and other groups. THIRD GENERATION OF LEADERSHIP Steve Yurosek is currently President of Sukut and started with the company in 2004. “I previously worked for Sukut’s main competitor in the L.A. area. When the owner of that company passed away, the company closed down. Mike hired me to open up an office in Los Angeles,” says Yurosek. According to Crawford, he called Steve the day the other company officially went out of business. “I had gotten to know Steve at pre-bids and many other industry events, and I knew


Above: Sukut excavated and hauled over 1.25 million cubic yards of rock material out of the future marina site for use in the 117 foot raise on the San Vicente Dam project. Above Right: A birds-eye view of the Crystal Cove project. Sukut won the ASCE Project of the Year Award after moving 30 million cubic yards of earth and installing seven million square feet of earth strengthening Geogrid at this site. Right: Sukut placing 5 million cubic yards of compacted fill to buttress North Landslide Complex at Frank R. Bowerman Landfill.

that he would be a great addition to Sukut,” says Crawford. Yurosek had relationships and contacts with builders in the L.A. area, and his experience was in that geographic area. Sukut didn’t have many projects in the L.A. area because Yurosek’s previous company had been dominant there for years. “It was a natural fit and a win-win for everyone,” says Yurosek. Sukut eventually reorganized and Yurosek headed up the Residential unit out of Santa Ana in 2010, which worked primarily with the builders and developers for many of the local master planned communities. Yurosek was elected to Sukut’s board of directors in 2015 and was appointed President in September 2017. He was introduced to construction in his childhood, watching his father work at his own grading business. Yurosek became a member of Local 12 Operating Engineers Union at the age of 18 and began operating tractors. He worked his way through

school while getting his degree in Construction Management and has been in the industry now for 30-plus years. He is responsible for all of the operations of the company, including estimating, field operations and project management. Serving as Sukut’s third generation of leadership, Yurosek has proven his worth, meeting and exceeding schedules and completing projects under budget. “We have a great team at Sukut, and it will be our responsibility to lead our company into the next 50 years, and I look forward to both the challenges and rewards that await us all.” A BUSINESS IN CONSTANT MOTION Sukut Construction specializes in several market areas: Residential, where they work for home builders and land developers; Environmental, where they engage in landfill construction, landfill closures and cleanups; the Energy sector, where they work primarily on solar projects in California and

Nevada, but also in other states throughout the country and Public Works projects where they work on streets, roads, and pipeline and drainage projects for the state, counties, cities and the federal government. Additionally, Sukut is also known for their participation in large, joint-venture projects with other well-known general engineering contractors. “When there is a project that may be too large for us to take on by ourselves comfortably, whether, through financial capacity, bonding or specialty, we partner with other contractors to share in the risk and reward,” says Crawford. “We have participated in joint ventures on everything from large dam projects to the massive Orange County Toll Road project in the mid-90s. “As a matter of record, the 241/261 Toll Road project that Crawford refers to is indeed the largest project to date in the company’s history. “This project is, of course, a story in and of itself. At that time, we were doing around $30 million in

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR



Above: Sukut built the world-renowned Pelican Hill golf course in 1990, and was asked by The Irvine Company to be a part of its consulting team and general contractor to construct the challenging world-class Pelican Hill Resort. Right: Sukut partnered with Raito, Inc. to upgrade the San Pablo Dam. They hardened the foundation and further strengthened the structure by widening the sloped downstream buttress from the bottom up.

revenue and were one of the top grading contractors in Orange County,” says Crawford. “The Toll Road project was advertised for bid and according to estimates was going to be around a $800 million job. Clearly that was too big for us to handle, but we were the most uniquely qualified to do the dirt work on the project. “This would be Sukut’s first experience with joint venture partners as they joined three other general engineering construction firms to bid the project that they eventually were awarded. “For us, this was like betting the entire company on one project because if we made any major mistakes on that one, we were out of business,” says Crawford. “We were the low bidder on the project as a team, and as a matter of fact, we were low bidder by more than $100 million. This sort of stressed Myron out a little because he was guaranteeing everything. He was heavily involved in everything from the bidding process on, and the entire job turned out to be a terrific success.” Sukut finished 12

the Toll Road project 16 months early and received bonuses for early completion, hitting all of their projections and budgets. This became the catalyst for future growth and success. “This was a design-build project that included one year of design and three years of construction. This is our most high profile and largest project to date and probably the largest project in Orange County history before the I-405 project came along,” says Crawford. Sukut Construction is currently wrapping up another joint venture project in Northern California. The Calaveras Dam Replacement Project is, according to Crawford, one of Sukut’s more challenging projects. “It is technically challenging. There were geotechnical issues, lots of change orders and other issues involved,” says Crawford. “We have managed the project well and have enjoyed a very successful relationship with all stakeholders throughout the job, and it has been a fantastic success.” According to Crawford, reservoir and dam

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

construction is by nature technically challenging. There are more inspections, more regulations and the specifications are tighter. “Dams are something you can’t make a mistake on, so we are happy to have the honor of working with the best in the business and are now topping out the job,” continues Crawford. “Construction on the dam is complete, and we are finishing the access roads and should have everything buttoned up by spring 2019.” Another area of expertise for Sukut Construction is the disaster relief and hazardous remediation work they do each year. They have been kept quite busy and are currently working on several fire cleanup jobs in Southern California. “We have been contracted by CalFire over the past several years to come in and demo residences that have been engulfed by flames, clean up and dispose of any toxic materials and then regrade the lots for the rebuilding process,” [Continued on page 14]

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[Continued from page 12] says Crawford. “We take special pride in this work, knowing that there are families that are patiently waiting to get back into their homes and back to living their lives.” Sukut Construction has received a long list of awards for their achievements over their 50 years in business. They received an award from Engineering News Record (ENR) just this past spring for their partnering work on the Calaveras Dam project and multiple awards for the Toll Road Project. They received another award from ENR around 10 years ago for their Tier III engine retrofitting work that they performed on many of their older earthmoving machines. “We did all of the CARB compliance work in-house with our field forces and this included some very complicated retrofitting of our older machines,” says Crawford. “I would like to say that we are one of the pioneers in this area of work. “Sukut Construction has also been recognized for their work on many other projects, as 14

well as receiving a plethora of safety and industry awards. Sukut Construction is currently in an expansion mode that is primarily focused on opportunities for people and not just growth for the sake of growth. “Our current expansion plans are based on allowing our people to try out their ideas and expand on their abilities,” says Crawford. “It is important to us that we retain our employees and provide enough opportunities where they won’t leave and one day become our competitors.” Sukut Construction is also expanding their operations geographically throughout the United States, keeping a close eye on projects that have a large earthwork or pipeline component. “We are extremely proficient in both of these areas of work, as well as in the energy sector,” continues Crawford. “We are also constantly evaluating different types of work where our core competencies can be utilized and try to think outside the box where growth is concerned. “Sukut Construction

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

is, arguably, the largest buyer and user of concrete pipe in Southern California and are extremely competent at all sorts of heavy concrete work, including massive pours for walls and drainage structures. Sukut Construction currently has 660 employees including both salaried and craft employees. They have expanded the ownership of the company, and according to Crawford that has been good for the company. “We now have 80 to 85 shareholders with the key people in our company now holding shares in the business. We think that is an excellent recipe for success,” says Crawford. Sukut Construction is one of the leading civil engineering general contractors in the Western region, and they are once again poised for additional growth, anxious to add to their 50-year legacy. For more information on Sukut Construction and their projects and capabilities, please log on to or call their Santa Ana headquarters at (714) 540-5351. Cc

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Below: In addition to eliminating dumping fees, the Vermeer grinder has helped Montoya expand his company into new areas, like land clearing.

Your Way Tree Service

By Lindsay Paulson

YOUR WAY TREE SERVICE, INC. “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” A cliché? A silly statement? Yes and perhaps yes, but in some cases, also one with some truth behind it. For Jesse Montoya, founder of Your Way Tree Service, Inc. in Tarzana, CA, his business came from a tough situation he turned into a positive – lemons to lemonade, one might say. In 2008, many companies were feeling the effects of The Great Recession, including those in the tree care industry. At the time, Montoya was working in sales for a local tree care company and, due to the tough economic climate, unexpectedly found himself laid off. After weighing the options, Montoya decided to make a move he hadn’t previously considered and started his own company. With his sales background, a two-man crew, and a small fleet of rented equipment, Your Way Tree Service, Inc. was born in August 2009. FINDING KEY PARTNERS Because of his background in residential tree care services, Montoya chose to start his company focused on those types of jobs and those types of customers.

“We started off doing basic tree care services,” he said of the early days. ”From tree trimming to full removal and, really, anything customers wanted in that realm, we’d do it.” His crew supplied its own tools and smaller equipment, and Montoya rented the two basic, larger machines needed – a chip truck and chipper – as well as additional equipment needed for specialty jobs, to complete the fleet. By the second year in business, Montoya was ready to add another crew, as well as some permanent members to his equipment fleet. He knew he needed at least one chipper and began exploring options from a mix of manufacturers, both those he was familiar with and those he wasn’t. “At my previous company, we worked almost exclusively with one brand so it was really the only one I knew,” he said. However, Montoya felt there was more to the complete equipment picture than just the make and model of a machine. So as he researched different chipper manufacturers, he also took the time to investigate different dealerships, as he wanted to partner with a company

that could also offer parts, service, and other support beyond the sale of equipment. In 2010, Montoya bought his first chipper, a Vermeer 1800XL – a leap of faith, both in terms of investing in his business and working with a brand he hadn’t before. “For me, the difference-maker in giving Vermeer equipment a try was the dealership,” he explained. That dealership was RDO Vermeer in Rancho Dominguez, part of the RDO Equipment Co. network of equipment stores across California and eight other states. After learning about the added support RDO Vermeer offered, Montoya felt confident in both his new partner and new Vermeer equipment. STEADY GROWTH With the new, slightly larger fleet of rented and owned equipment, and through a mix of cold-calling and word-of-mouth from happy customers, Your Way Tree Service, Inc. consistently grew its client base, both in terms of numbers and location. The footprint was expanding to more of the Los Angeles metro area. To keep up with growth and uptick

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR


Above: After researching manufacturers and dealers, Montoya chose Vermeer and RDO Equipment Co. for his first equipment purchase – and his first-ever Vermeer machine.

in clients, a new two-man crew was being added each year. “We were growing at a steady and manageable pace, so that became a goal for our growth; to add one more two-man crew every year,” Montoya said. The company also began diversifying its services, adding commercial customers to the mix. But Your Way Tree Service, Inc. wasn’t done diversifying. Again because of a pesky lemon, Montoya took an opportunity to make lemonade by adding something new to the company. ANOTHER LEMON, MORE LEMONADE While the growing business was great, it wasn’t coming without cost. A common practice for tree care companies is to pay dumping fees for chips and limbs to be further ground up and 18

disposed of after a completed job. As Your Way Tree Service, Inc. grew, so too did the cost it was incurring in fees. “We were averaging 350 to 400 tons of material a day, often paying 25,000 up to 30,000 dollars a month in dumping fees,” Montoya recalls. He began looking at equipment that would allow the company to manage the process, and be able to sell or give away the material vs. pay to dump it. He turned to the RDO Vermeer team for help in finding the right machine at a price that would make sense on the bottom line. They one-upped him on the request, taking him to the Vermeer factory in Pella, IA so he could see all the options available, talk with experts, and, ultimately, decide if investing in a machine would be the right move for his business.

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

“It ended up coming down to simple numbers,” he said. “After looking at options and talking to the RDO team about cost, the monthly dumping fees far exceeded the cost for me to own and operate my own grinder, and take care of this work myself.” In November of 2017, Montoya added Vermeer’s TG5000 tub grinder to his fleet, a machine he says has been ideal for this new service of the business. The TG5000 has done more than take on the work to eliminate dumping fees, it has also allowed Your Way Tree Service, Inc. to expand into new areas of business, primarily land clearing. Montoya says the ROI was realized almost instantly after adding the machine, thanks to the combination of sheer dollar savings and further diversification. [Continued on page 16]

Above: The grinder has been a great addition to the fleet, so much in fact the team is looking to add a second unit.

[Continued from page 14] Service hasn’t been an issue, even with the TG5000 being used every day. Not only does RDO Vermeer take care of servicing all his equipment quickly and conveniently, Montoya says the real game-changer is the loaner equipment he gets during those service periods, ensuring he’s never without a machine he needs. “That was the biggest thing that sold me on RDO from the beginning and I’m very pleased they’ve lived up to the service commitment,” he said. CONTINUING TO CLIMB HIGHER With the TG5000 being used every day and business continuing to boom, Montoya is already looking to add a second tub grinder to his fleet. He also recently 20

purchased two more 1800XL chippers to keep up with the company’s needs. Outside of Vermeer equipment, Your Way Tree Service, Inc. has benefitted from RDO Equipment Co.’s network of stores and partnerships with other major manufacturers, like John Deere. Recently Montoya worked with the RDO Equipment Co. team in nearby Riverside, CA, primarily a John Deere construction equipment store, to further expand his fleet. In order to load the TG5000 and move the finished material, he needed a loader. After reviewing options and talking with the RDO team, Montoya chose a John Deere 524K. It’s working well and he’s currently looking to add another machine from the Riverside store, this time a John Deere excavator.

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

But the real shining star in his equipment fleet comes back to that TG5000 grinder, a purchase that Montoya says, with a laugh, “Is the best and only thing I’ve done right for the business so far.” Humble he may be, with Your Way Tree Service, Inc. now strong at 45 employees and preparing to celebrate its 10-year anniversary next summer, one could argue Montoya has done several things right for his business. And who knew it would all start by him taking a lost job, one of life’s toughest lemons, and turning it into some lemonade. Cc –––––––––––––––––––––––––– Learn more about total equipment solutions from RDO Equipment Co. by visiting or your local RDO Equipment Co. store.




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Seepage System Key Component of Northern California Dam Reconstruction By Steve Cooper, SCA Communications


he rebuilding of the dam here proved to be successful when in February 2017 unprecedented storm water runoff and snow melt flowed into Bass Lake, nearly prompting an emergency evacuation of the area. The Crane Valley Dam is located about 40 miles northeast of Fresno in Madera County, California on the North Fork of Willow Creek, a tributary of the San Joaquin River. The dam was built between 1902 and 1911 when little was known about the region's seismic activity. The dam is a 145-foot high, hydraulic earth and rock fill embankment, with a thin central concrete core wall. The dam is 1,880 feet long, and its crest is at 3,380 feet elevation. Crane Valley Dam consists of two distinct dams separated by a rock knoll. The Main Dam is located in the main channel of the creek, and has earth fill on the upstream side of the


core wall and rock fill on the downstream side. The West Dam is located adjacent to the main dam in a smaller side channel west of the creek, and has earth fill on both sides of the core wall. The spillway is located on a saddle about 500 feet to the east of the dam. In addition to the spillway, a network of underground pipe was also buried to help control any seepage from the lake. High-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe was used to create an underground drainage system that helps to prevent erosion of the earthen dam from seeping water. More than 4,200 feet of the pipe from Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc. (ADS) (WMS: NYSE) was used on the dry side of the dams to pull groundwater away from the bottom of the structures. Owned by PG&E - Pacific Gas and Electric - , the retrofit design to modify the Crane Valley Dam was done to

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

increase the stability of the dam structures to meet state and federal safety guidelines. Analysis showed that in the event of an earthquake, the dam could slump and allow water to flow over the top, causing flooding downstream. The dam modification would consist of the addition of approximately 253,000 cubic yards of rock fill to selected areas on the upstream and downstream faces of the dam. The seismic retrofit project included installation of rockfill buttresses on the sections of the dam with hydraulic fill on the upstream and downstream sides of the concrete core wall. The downstream shell consists of a massive rockfill embankment and with the crest raised to elevation 3387, about seven feet above present minimum crest elevation in order to provide more freeboard. Kiewit Infrastructure West Co., (Fairfield. CA) was the contractor.

ADS N-12® soil tight perforated and watertight corrugated HDPE pipe was used to create the toe drain and to provide drainage under other areas of the dam.

ADS N-12® soil tight perforated and watertight corrugated HDPE pipe was used to create the toe drain and to provide drainage under other areas of the dam. This included 2,500 feet of 8-inch diameter, several hundred feet of 24-inch and 18-inch diameter watertight pipe to convey the water and 1,600 feet of perforated 12-inch diameter corrugated HDPE pipe that would allow water to infiltrate the pipe system. The pipe was selected due to its long life and ease of installation because of the dam's rugged terrain that included large slopes. With a corrugated exterior and smooth interior, ADS N-12 watertight HDPE pipe provides both strength and optimum hydraulic capacity. Because it has an integral bell and spigot plus factory installed gasket, the pipe requires no

Nearly 1,600 feet of perforated 12-inch diameter corrugated HDPE pipe was installed to allow water to infiltrate the pipe system.

To convey the water, 2,500 feet of 8-inch diameter, several hundred feet of 24-inch and 18-inch diameter watertight pipe was used.

extra couplers, grout or other sealants. ADS N-12 WT IB pipe meets ASTM watertight standards.

integrity of corrugated HDPE pipe can be validated using the design procedures outlined in the AASHTO Load Resistance Factor Design (LRFD) Bridge Design Specifications. AASHTO LRFD Section 12 is a strain-based design procedure suitable for thermoplastic pipes such as HDPE, polypropylene, and PVC. The AASHTO LRFD code considers the actual failure modes of thermoplastic pipe such as thrust, wall buckling, as well as combined strain to ensure a viable design. Deflection is considered as a service limit and serves as confirmation of the design and ensures suitable long-term performance. ADS pipe is available in diameters from four to 60 inches. This federally supervised project with a major energy company for a seismic retrofit project corrected build

Because it is lightweight, ADS corrugated pipe can be easily handled with minimal equipment by a one or two-person crew, providing a favorable alternative to concrete pipe. And with a long ‘stick’ length, the number of joints are reduced, which also saves labor and installation time. Named for its excellent Manning’s “n” rating of 0.012, the N-12 pipe was designed in 1987 by ADS specifically for culverts, storm sewers, highways, airports and other civil design construction. The pipe's strength is due to its design, HDPE resin, and manufacturing process according to ADS. The structural

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR


Crane Valley Dam consists of two distinct dams separated by a rock knoll. The Main Dam is located in the main channel of the creek, and has earth fill on the upstream side of the core wall and rock fill on the downstream side.

deficiencies from the early 1900’s, and provided protection for the area and residents during a near cataclysmic flooding event. Additional information can be found at About Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc.: Advanced Drainage Systems (ADS) is the leading manufacturer of high

The dam modification used an additional 253,000 cubic yards of rock fill to selected areas on the upstream and downstream faces of the dam.

High-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipe was used to create an underground drainage system that helps to prevent erosion of the earthen dam from seeping water. More than 4,200 feet of the pipe from ADS was used on the dry side of the two dams to pull groundwater away from the bottom of the structures.

A network of underground pipe was buried to create a toe drain that would help control any seepage from the lake.

performance thermoplastic corrugated pipe, providing a comprehensive suite of water management products and superior drainage solutions for use in the construction and infrastructure marketplace. Its innovative products are used across a broad range of end markets and applications, including non-residential, residential, agriculture and infrastructure applications. The Company has established

a leading position in many of these end markets by leveraging its national sales and distribution platform, its overall product breadth and scale and its manufacturing excellence. Founded in 1966, the Company operates a global network of approximately 60 manufacturing plants and over 30 distribution centers. To learn more about the ADS, please visit the Company’s website at Cc

ADS N-12 HDPE pipe provides both strength and optimum hydraulic capacity.

The seismic retrofit project included rockfill buttresses hydraulic fill on the upstream and downstream sides of the concrete core wall.

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Papich Construction, Inc. Erects New 21st Century Asphalt Plant for City of Los Angeles By Brian Hoover

Above: Three 300-ton HMA silos, drum, baghouse and three 35,000 gallon AC oil tanks. Inset: Eric Hopkins, Project Manager, Papich Contruction, on top of the HMA traverse conveyor platform (aggregate silos in background).



he City of Los Angeles (the City), Department of Public Works Bureau of Street Services is just about ready to open their new Asphalt Plant No. 1 after receiving a complete makeover to modernize the previously outdated facility. With some components of the plant dating back to the 1940s, everyone would agree that it was time for an upgrade. The aging plant has

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

long needed to be replaced in order to bring production capabilities up to modern standards. The previous asphalt plant was permitted to produce up to 584,000 tons (950 tons per day) of hot mix asphalt product each year, but due to wear and age, was only capable of putting out around 200,000 tons annually. The new plant now offers a production capacity of up to 700,000 tons of HMA per year

Above: Five 600-ton aggregate silos and RAP system.

(400-tons per hour), and is also capable of producing warm mix asphalt. The City can now more than triple their production in their road construction efforts to maintain and reconstruct the approximately 6,500 centerline miles of streets and 800 center line miles of alleys that make Los Angeles the largest municipal street system in the nation. The project contained several phases or segments, including the demolition of the existing Asphalt Plant No. 1, excavation and removal of contaminated soils, transport of clean fill material onsite, construction of a modern plant, and construction of the administration and maintenance building. Papich Construction, Inc.

(Papich) was the low bidder on this $31,073,000 design build project with an original construction completion estimate of around 25 months. Papich knows a thing or two about asphalt plants, having two hot mix asphalt plants of their own in Santa Margarita and Paso Robles. Eric Hopkins is a project manager for Papich and he also helped oversee the construction of the new L.A. plant. “The bid was first advertised in December 2015, and we were awarded the contract from the City in June 2016,” says Hopkins. “We were then given notice to proceed in October 2016 and this is when we began hard demolition of the existing plant.”

The design/build project called for a new HMA production and storage system to house all of the aggregate, RAP, and asphalt oil needed to produce the HMA products. In addition to the new administration and maintenance building, Papich also constructed a new control/ electrical structure, gasoline fuel island, vehicle entry, circulation and parking area, as well as installing some utilities, stormwater management and lighting systems. The new plant’s production capabilities will require an increase in raw materials including around 340,000 tons per year of both raw aggregate materials and

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR


Left: New administration building with downtown LA in background. Below: Old asphalt plant and administration buildings (pre-demolition).

reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP), as well as 21,000 tons per year of asphalt oil. “The old plant was only capable of producing HMA with a RAP content of up to 7.5 percent, whereas the new modern plant is set up and approved for the use of as much as 50 percent RAP,” says Hopkins. “Due to the restricted size of the site, the contract called for the installation of five new raw aggregate silos.” According to Hopkins, these five aggregate silos were supplied by Astec Industries, Inc. with each yielding a capacity of 600 tons (3,000 tons of total storage). “There is just no room on the site for large piles of aggregate, so the logical choice was to build these silos where the trucks will come in and dump the aggregate through a grizzly screen and then into a 30-ton truck unloading hopper, where the conveyor transfers the material to the aggregate elevator and then onto the appropriate silo,” says Hopkins. 28

The new RAP system offers (2) 10' x 14' RAP bins, the system is fitted with a Telsmith 4230 Horizontal Shaft Impactor which will break up any oversized material, the system has the capacity of running 200 TPH of Recycled Asphalt. Papich was able to salvage a few of the HMA silos, the drag flats, some RAP conveyors, as well as the control house, which were all shipped up north for storage or use with the two Papich asphalt plants. The remaining components of the old L.A. plant were dismantled and shipped to scrap yards and recycling centers. This included the baghouse, drum and batch tower, along with many other components. Astec Industries, Inc. supplied the bulk of new equipment for the modern HMA plant including a new hot mix elevator that will be used to feed (3) new 300-ton asphalt storage silos capable of storing HMA for up to four days. Additionally, Astec supplied three new 35,000-gallon asphalt

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

cement storage tanks through their sister company, CEI, Inc. They also provided an 8’ x 40’ Astec Double Barrel Drum feeding a Twin Shaft mixer that is rated at 400 TPH with 50 percent RAP capability. The drum is fitted with a VFD and patented Stack Temperature control system, and the silo system comes equipped with an 18,000 CFM Astec Fiber-bed Blue smoke collection system. Astec also delivered a new 12’ x 27’ control house and 11’ x 40’ power center, and an 8,000 gallon TAC tank. There were a few other suppliers like, Butler-Justice, Inc., who supplied the dust collectors for the RAP and cold feed systems. A new 76,000 CFM Pulse-Jet Baghouse was also supplied by Astec with an automatic leak detection system. But before any of this modern state-of-the-art equipment could be installed, the site had to be demoed and prepped with rough grading and the installation of [Continued on page 30]


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Left: Ground breaking ceremony with Mayor Eric Garcetti.

[Continued from page 28] around 3,000 cubic yards of concrete and more than 2,200 cubic yards of aggregate. The demolition process continued until the end of 2016 with nearly 5,000 cubic yards of demolition material being recycled or exported off site to the appropriate waste facility. Any and all hazardous materials were removed and properly disposed of to a licensed hazardous waste facilityby qualified professionals prior to demolition. After demolition, the rough grading began with the excavation and removal of contaminated soil offsite and the import of clean material onsite. This was followed by the compaction and grading of the site. Once all of the civiland initial paving work was complete, and all of the building footprints were over-excavated and recompacted, Papich began forming and pouring the foundations. The aggregate pit is situated right next to the foundation that supports the five massive silos, and due to the extreme weight, a massive foundation was required on the open, unsupported side. “This 30

particular foundation called for six separate pours, one a top of the other, and 2,500 cubic yards of concrete,” says Hopkins. This was followed finally by the erection of the administration and maintenance building, and then all of the new asphalt plant components were installed. “We began pouring the foundations in Fall 2017, and erecting the plant itself in Winter 2018,” says Hopkins. “We worked many overtime days, and some double time days throughout the spring/ summer/fall of 2018 to finish the erection of the plant. We had an extremely knowledgeable crew working both for and with us on this project and I am proud to be associated with the installation of this new modern plant. It is important that I take a moment to thank everyone who has contributed to the success of this project. The list is long, and they all know who they are, but I will mention a special thanks to our entire Papich crew, the folks at the City of Los Angeles, Astec Industries, CEI, Inc. and Duncan Bros., California Coastal Development (building subcontractor), and all of our engineering firms.”

2018 Specialty Construction ISSUE CALCONTRACTOR

Papich is wrapping up the final process of testing, and the office building is also very close to completion. This is a sustainable infrastructure project that Papich will receive both LEED and ISI Envision certification for, as well as other honors and awards that are sure to follow. It is estimated that the new Asphalt Plant No. 1 will save taxpayers around $5 million a year and produce clean, environmentally friendly paving materials for Los Angeles’ 28,000 lane miles of streets. The plant is built to meet or exceed the latest air quality standards of the South Coast Air Quality Management District, and the low-impact design will significantly reduce pollutants from stormwater runoff, at a far lower cost per ton of asphalt. The plant is expected to last a minimum of 50-years and pay for itself in around seven. For additional information on the new City of Los Angeles Asphalt Plant No. 1 or Papich Construction, Inc., please visit or call (805) 773-3016. Cc


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NEW IDENTITY FOR CAT® PRODUCTS REFLECTS THE BRAND’S PREMIUM QUALITY Cat® machines, engines, generator sets and work tools will soon have a new look. Caterpillar is replacing the current “Power Edge” trade dress (Cat trademark on a black background accented with a diagonal red bar) with a fresh new graphic design called “Cat Modern Hex.” The Cat Modern Hex design combines the traditional Cat trademark and product model names with a bold, three-dimensional red hexagon and grille pattern. The red color is a throwback to the graphics used on the company’s very first crawler tractors in 1925. The Cat Modern Hex was designed by the Caterpillar Industrial Design Group. “Our goal was to create something with a premium look and feel,” said Ed Stembridge, product identity manager. “When you combine the Modern Hex design with our distinctive Cat product designs, it visually reminds

customers they are buying and using the best products on the market.” In addition to machines, gen sets and engines, the new trade dress will be used on Cat parts packaging and various licensed products such as toys and scale

models. Cat products that are no longer in production will not be updated. Look for the Modern Hex design on newly-manufactured Cat products in the near future as Caterpillar updates its whole product line by early 2020. Cc

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* Edelman Berland Driver Survey, 2014

| ** Edelman Berland Survey, 2013

55% of drivers today identify traffic delays due to road construction as the most frustrating part of their driving experience.* With off-peak construction, asphalt pavements leave roads and parking lots open when demand is at its highest. Surface maintenance and repair are quick, ensuring drivers and pavement owners have a smooth, high performance surface with minimal inconvenience. No wonder an independent survey found 87% of engineers, developers, transportation officials and other key stakeholders chose asphalt for its ease of maintenance.** Smoother, quieter, fewer delays… that’s drivability. That’s asphalt. L E A R N M O R E A T W W W. D R I V E A S P H A LT. O R G

The APA is a partnership of the Asphalt Institute, National Asphalt Pavement Association and the State Asphalt Pavement Associations.

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