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A publication of the California Construction and Industrial Materials Association

Winter Issue


Transportation Economy



Infrastructure Member Feature

14 18








TRANSPORTATION FUNDING Will Kempton, Executive Director, Transportation California, Shares His Views on California’s Ongoing




Transportation and Infrastructure Crisis


ECONOMY Pierre Villere Points to High Confidence and Improved Sentiments as Major Driver in 2017-18 Construction


Economy Outlook


INFRASTRUCTURE Public Infrastructure Design That’s More Than Utilitarian



MEMBER FEATURE Graniterock Continues Legacy of Family Values with Industry Leading Vision, Inspiration and Stewardship

The Conveyor is a publication of the California Construction and Industrial Materials Association. The views expressed herein are fixed expressions of the contributing writers and not of CalCIMA. All rights reserved.

CalCIMA 1029 J Street, #420 Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 554-1000

Published By Construction Marketing Services, LLC

Design Aldo Myftari

P.O. Box 892977 Temecula, CA 92589 (909) 772-3121

Editorial Contributors Suzanne Seivright Director of Local Governmental Affairs, CalCIMA

Publisher Kerry Hoover

Brian Hoover Editor, Construction Marketing Services

The Conveyor is published quarterly each year by Construction Marketing Services, LLC All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

Editor Brian Hoover

The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue



Good Jobs are an Investment that Builds Society Dear Readers, 2017 promises to have challenges and importantly, opportunities, for our diverse CalCIMA membership. Although there are good indications that federal infrastructure spending will increase as federal regulations are reworked to promote American business, we still live in California. California has a different regulatory intent. Many of you remember early 2000’s when Federal Government tempered regulation but California legislators sought to “back-fill” those rules, at a state level; and in many cases the new regulations over reached. I suspect a return to that model. This risk is compounded with budget woes. Now, during times of positive economic growth, California struggles to pass a balanced budget, and even warns of multi-billion dollar deficits if federal subsidies for healthcare are withdrawn. With much at risk, our membership needs a voice to tell our story. Construction and industrial material suppliers and associated support service businesses provide good jobs, very good jobs. Further, our companies need very specialized, large and expensive equipment to harvest minerals, build roads, supply solar panels, and much more. Our story is one of jobs, materials and services that literally make the very foundation of society. When you do that locally, those benefits are local and the environmental impact is less. But you know that. Our challenge is that many policy makers don’t know this narrative. We need a podium and a voice. CalCIMA is our megaphone. Soon our very committed, and volunteer, Board of Directors, Committee Chairs and few others will join at a retreat for our strategic plan update. At this retreat we will pick the direction of our conversation with both the elected, and those who elect them. In the next edition of Conveyor I’ll outline the results of the strategic symposium. Sincerely,

Aaron Johnston

VP of Safety Environmental and Quality Services Graniterock


The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue


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TRANSPORTATION FUNDING Will Kempton, Executive Director, Transportation California, Shares His Views on California’s Ongoing Transportation and Infrastructure Crisis By Brian Hoover California T ransportation Executive Director Will

Kempton has been serving the California transportation industry in both a public and private capacity for more than 43 years. His career began at Caltrans in 1973 where he served in a variety of capacities before moving on to become Assistant Director in charge of Legislative and Congressional Affairs. In 1985, Kempton became Executive Director of the Santa Clara County Traffic Authority, and then in 1992, a partner of Smith, Kempton & Watts, a Sacramento advocacy and consulting firm. In 2002, he became Assistant City Manager of the City of Folsom, before being recruited to head Caltrans for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger from 2004-09. From 2009-13, Kempton served as Chief Executive Officer for the Orange County Transportation Authority and more recently served as Executive Director of the California Transportation Commission. The Transportation Commission is responsible for advising and assisting the California Legislature and the Administration in the development of transportation plans and policies, and facilitating the programming and allocation of funds for highway, passenger rail, and transit improvements throughout California. Kempton now serves as Executive Director of Transportation California, one of the state’s leading transportation 6

Will Kempton

Executive Director, Transportation California

organizations. Transportation California is an industry based advocacy group that is dedicated to the advancement of California’s transportation program, and represents contractors, laborers, materials suppliers and other stakeholders interested in maintaining and increasing the funding for California’s ailing transportation infrastructure. Will Kempton’s 40-plus-years of experience in transportation, public service, and government affairs qualify him as one of the top authorities and experts on the subject of California’s transportation program. “Let’s start with the need, which is obviously very significant. The American Society of Engineers most recent infrastructure report card gives California a ‘D,’

and several other reports from industry-affiliated organizations have targeted California specifically for their poor road conditions and performance,” says Kempton. “Unfortunately, while everyone seems to recognize the need for improvements to the transportation system, no one wants to pay for those improvements." California’s state transportation infrastructure includes 304,000 miles of city and county roads, 50,000 state and highway lane miles, 12,000 state bridges, nearly 900 miles of rail, and 180 local transit agencies operating numerous transit systems. The state of California’s transportation infrastructure is a major factor in continued economic growth, especially when you consider that around 20 percent of all imported goods in the United States move through California ports, highways, and railways. Transportation funding has fallen well below what is needed to maintain the system. Kempton makes it clear that we are at a critical juncture here in California, where the Legislature must find a way to put more investment into transportation infrastructure. “We have been pushing hard over these past three years to get something going in Sacramento to address our broken transportation network,” says Kempton. “Since the gas tax, which is the primary source of funding for our program, is not very popular, The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue


SB 1 & AB 1 Transportation Funding Bill

we considered an initiative in 2013 to increase the vehicle license fee. That proposal did not poll very well either, so in 2014 we decided to focus more of our efforts toward educating the public and our elected officials. I believe that we have made some progress in that regard because most people drive our roads and freeways every day and they understand the need better than anyone," says Kempton. "However, it is necessary that we explain the financial side to them as well, and the fact that there are costs and hidden taxes associated with not maintaining our road systems.” According to a recent transportation study, Californians spend an average of more than $800 on annual vehicle repair costs due to poorly maintained roads. The study also found that the average California commute continues to be within the top five longest of all 50 states. “Our economy and quality of life suffers from the loss in productivity from the hours spent on congested roadways. Our entire transportation system is in bad shape. The annual need to adequately The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

maintain local streets and roads, the state highway system and rail and transit operations is roughly $8 billion a year for each of those modes. That is a lot of money, but we have underinvested in our transportation infrastructure for decades. The sad news is that for every year that we fail to invest appropriately, the worse things get and the more it will cost when we finally get around to fixing or replacing these important facilities.” In the Governor’s 2015 State of the State address, Governor Brown recognized that we have a serious problem with infrastructure funding and called on both Democrats and Republicans to come together and develop a transportation package that would begin to address the dramatic shortfall. Kempton points out that in the past two years, the Governor also convened a special session of the Legislature and several bills have been introduced to address this problem. Although the rhetoric seemed to be going in the right direction, nothing happened. “In 2016, Governor Brown introduced his transportation package as part of his 2016/17 budget.

The Legislature debated the issue and ultimately decided to keep transportation funding out of the budget and instead deal with the issue in special session,” says Kempton. According to Kempton, the champions for transportation in the Legislature are Jim Frazier, Chairman of the Assembly Transportation Committee, and Senator Jim Beall, who chairs the Transportation & Housing Committee in the Senate. “Both of these men introduced legislation in 2016 that would have raised $7 billion a year. But as the regular session came to a close in August, they were ultimately not successful in getting their respective houses to take up the issue,” says Kempton. “However, the special session called by the Governor did not expire until the end of November, and although California does not usually deal with policy issues in lame duck sessions, we pressed forward.” Kempton goes on to say, “In spite of all the challenges, we nearly pulled it off with the assistance of several legislators, stakeholders and organizations like the Fix Our Roads Coalition.” 7

According to Kempton, the Fix our Roads Coalition has a strong following of transportation stakeholders, including members of local government associations, labor, business, Transportation California, The California Alliance for Jobs, The Southern California Partnership for Jobs, the California Councils of Government and the California Transit Association. “The political hurdle we face is daunting, particularly with respect to raising taxes and fees. Both the Republicans and Democrats agree on reforms and making the program operate more efficiently, but that is where the consensus ends,” says Kempton. “Republicans think we should redirect existing resources for transportation purposes, and the Democrats are willing to consider some fee and tax increases, but are concerned with the impact on the more disadvantaged citizenry.” Because the Legislature couldn’t get together and reach agreement on a final package, the stakeholders received a letter from the Governor, Senate Pro Tem, Kevin de Leon and Speaker, Anthony Rendon dated November 22, 2016, just eight days before the end of the special session. The correspondence stated that there would be no lame duck session, but that these leaders all recognized the importance of infrastructure investment and promised to make the issue a priority for the new session in January. As Kempton explains, “They used words like “committed,” and quite frankly, we have taken them at their word.” 8

Road Charge Fee

Gas and Diesel Tax Increase

In early December, the new legislature was sworn in, and they reconvened for business on Jan. 4. On Jan. 10, the Governor proposed his transportation budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, and once again proposed a transportation funding package as part of his fiscal plan. The transportation funding package reflected in the Governor’s 2017-18 budget is similar, although slightly larger, to the package he proposed last year. It is estimated that the Governor’s transportation package for the coming budget year would generate around $4.3 billion annually, with funds coming primarily from a new $65 “road charge” fee. The proposal also calls for increases in gasoline and diesel excise taxes, both adjusted annually for inflation. In all, the funding plan would provide an estimated $43 billion in new funding and

redirected savings from efficiencies at Caltrans over the next ten years, including a combination of new revenues, additional investments in Cap and Trade auction proceeds, accelerated loan repayments, streamlined project delivery as well as accountability measures and protections for the new revenues. “I am very pleased that Governor Brown has once again included transportation funding as part of his budget, demonstrating his continued commitment to improving infrastructure throughout California,” says Kempton. On the legislative front, Senator Beall and Assembly Member Frazier will continue to push their funding proposals in 2017 through the introduction of SB 1 (Beall) and AB 1 (Frazier), with each proposal generating around $6 billion annually through a combination of gas and diesel excise tax increases, a hike in the vehicle registration fee, and a shift in a portion of truck weight fees to direct transportation needs. “Both Beall and Frazier would like to move quickly and get things going, but this is not going to be a slam dunk in spite of a two-thirds Democratic majority in both houses," says Kempton. "Thirty-three new members of the state Legislature, many who were elected in marginal districts, are going to be presented with legislation that includes significant new fees and tax hikes as one of their first major actions in the Legislature. I believe that it is going to give them some pause.” The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

Kempton adds that the topic of transportation and infrastructure funding should be a non-partisan issue. “There appears to be support for both proposals, but only time will tell if the Democrats can work with Republicans on subjects like adequate reforms and tax hikes. There are still a lot of issues, and it is going to take 54 votes in the assembly and 27 votes in the

Senate.” As the year progresses, it will be up to the Legislature and the Governor to work out the details and ultimately approve an appropriate level of funding for California’s ailing transportation system. For more information on the Governor’s 2017-18 transportation budget, please visit

Publications/Detail/3533. For more information on the AB1/ SB1 transportation bills, please visit Resources-Documents/PolicyAdvocacy-Section/Hot-Issues/ Transportation-Funding/AB1SB1-Transportation-FundingAnalysis-Dec-2016.aspx.



The Conveyor Magazine with Gary Johnson Vice President, Land & Quarry, Granite Construction Inc. Chairman of CalCIMA's Governmental & Legislative Affairs Committee.

Conveyor Magazine (CM): How important is it that the legislature gets transportation funding done this year? Why? GJ: More important than last year. The longer our political leadership delays addressing this issue the greater the cost to taxpayers to address it. It’s like not brushing your teeth for a year, you are going to get more cavities. Pretty soon you are going to have a mouth full of cavities. Our road and freeway systems are a mess right now. Fix it. CM: With Democrats now having a super majority in both houses of the legislature do you think the path is now clear for increased taxes for transportation? GJ: Not anymore than last year. This is a bipartisan issue. Leadership from both houses, the Governor’s office and both parties need to exhibit real leadership to find solutions for sustainable investment in our highways. Good economies that provide good jobs and quality of life depend on moving goods and people efficiently across and through the state. We are lagging

behind other states in investment. Pick your favorite reason for highway investment – jobs, more road capacity, less air emissions from vehicles sitting in traffic, quality of life, cheaper movement of manufactured goods and agriculture – government has a responsibility to provide efficient highways and roads. Sacramento has kicked the can down the road way too long. CM: What impact will a long term transportation funding package have on the construction materials industry? GJ: It would be good for the construction materials industry no doubt and generate more sales tax revenue for local and state government, but more importantly it would be good for every citizen in this state. It would be good for the truck driver and the company he or she drives as it would allow us to move goods quicker and for less cost, it would be good for the moms sitting in traffic to pick up kids, good for the commuters that drive 2 hours in 20 mph traffic to get to work, and it would reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from cars idling on our freeways. Investment in our transportation infrastructure is good for everyone.

ECONOMY Pierre Villere Points to High Confidence and Improved Sentiments as Major Driver in 2017-18 Construction Economy Outlook By Brian Hoover Villere is the president P ierre and managing partner

of Allen-Villere Partners, an investment-banking firm with a national practice in the construction materials industry. After spending four decades with a focus on serving middle market companies, Villere made a move in 1996 to focus his practice on a highly specialized segment of the construction industry, comprised of ready mixed concrete, aggregates, and asphalt products. He has sat on several committees, task forces and the board of directors of multiple industry associations. He has made numerous presentations on various topics and aspects of this industry, to dozens of state and national trade associations. He is also a contributing editor to The Concrete Producer magazine, where he has written a monthly business and financial column for 12 years. In this particular interview with The Conveyor magazine, Villere appears to be bullish about what lies ahead for the construction industry both in California and nationally. “First and foremost, putting your political opinions aside, and whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, there is no doubt that the election of Donald Trump has brought an exceptionally high level of confidence and improved sentiment to the construction industry, in general, across the United States,” says Villere. “In our opinion, sentiment is self-fulfilling. So when a person feels good about their business, they go out and maybe hire more people and purchase new construction equipment. They are anticipatory about what 10

Pierre G. Villere

President, Managing Partner Allen-Villere Partners

lies ahead, and so we think that buyer confidence and improved sentiment will be a major driver in the 2017 construction economy outlook.” Villere points to continued robustness in the construction equipment and materials industry, which is not too unexpected when you consider just how far down things went before beginning some semblance of rebound in around 2012. Recent milestones in the stock market seem to support Villere’s strong feelings toward a significant recovery. Villere points out that it's hard to overlook the fact that this all took place within the first few weeks of the Trump presidency. It has been said that ‘The Trump Effect’, in this particular case, was propelled by the new President’s calls for massive infrastructure spending, lower corporate taxes, regulatory

rollbacks and the fostering of a pro-business environment. “Until now the recovery has been on an extremely shallow glide path from some pretty significant depths, and nobody accurately predicted just how anemic the recovery would be,” says Villere. “But if there is one thing that I could telegraph to you right now, it is that the recovery is here and it is here in spades.” According to the U.S. Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce, gains in all three major construction categories recently pushed total construction to its highest point since April 2006, when housing fueled a building boom. Villere suggests that there are several drivers for this newly anticipated phenomena. “Construction sentiment is close to an all time high, as witnessed by the latest Dodge Momentum Index reports, says Villere. “My bet is that 2017-18 will be breakout years for this index that utilizes measurements of non-residential building projects in the planning stages as an indicator of future construction spending.” Secondly, Villere says that consumer sentiment is also climbing, as witnessed in the latest University of Michigan Survey of Consumers report. In the recent Jan. 2017 report, consumers expressed a higher level of confidence than that experienced within the last dozen years. The details indicate that the post election surge is due in part to an overall more optimistic outlook for the economy, particularly in the area of job growth. Additionally, participants reported a more positive assessment of their

[ Continued on page 12 ]

The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

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[ Continued from page 10 ]

current personal financial situation, with expectations of it getting even better in coming years. According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), builder confidence, in the market for newly-built single-family homes, jumped seven points to a level of 70, which is the highest reading since July 2005. However, sales of newly built, single-family homes fell 10 percent on a monthly basis this past December to a weak 536,000. The brighter note is that, according to the NAHB website, new home sales posted an overall 12.2 percent gain in 2016 over 2015. It is expected that pricing and interest rates will be a challenge for homebuilders in 2017, along with a potential shortage of lots, labor and building materials. Putting extenuating factors aside, consumers are reported to be in a buying frame of mind. The Consumer Confidence Index recently reported the highest levels of consumer confidence since August 2001, when it went from 109.4 in November 2016 to 113.7 in December. Business condition expectations over the next six months also increased from 16.4 to 23.6 percent. “Whether you like Donald Trump or not, the fact is, he is a make it happen guy, and he is going to do whatever is necessary to get an infrastructure bill in place that all 50 states can benefit from. Certainly California being toward the top of that list,” says Villere. “Things are still a bit vague, but we all know that there are thousands of deficient highways and bridges out there that need fixing. We have a long history of deferred maintenance on our Nation’s infrastructure and it is not just streets and roads. It also includes bridges, tunnels, airports, railroads, ports, schools, public buildings, underground utilities, water treatment facilities and waterways. It is time to strike while the iron is hot and while sentiment remains at such high levels.” President Trump has been touting a plan to finance up to $1 trillion in infrastructure spending over the next decade. He presents a plan that would, among other things, rely heavily on private funding, with government tax credits. A trillion dollars translates into hundreds of millions of cubic feet of concrete, and even if this number is exaggerated, the aggregates industry will certainly benefit from what is sure to be 12


Source: | University of Michigan



The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

an era of dramatic infrastructure investments. The American people made it clear on Nov. 8 that they want their government to invest in our transportation infrastructure, with 22 states approving ballot measures that will provide $201 billion in funding extensions and new revenue for state and local transportation projects. California voters approved 15 of 26 transportation ballot measures worth $133 billion, including a 1 cent sales tax in Los Angeles that will provide $120 billion over 40 years for local road, bridge and transit projects. It is important to note that the California measures were required to have a minimum two-thirds “super majority” vote to pass, and that 10 of the measures came in with more than 50 percent of the vote, without reaching the required threshold. “During the presidential campaigns, the need for infrastructure spending was one of the rare topics that most or all of the candidates agreed upon. I am not big on deficit spending, but I think that Donald Trump is going to find ways to save money in certain areas of the overall budget, in order to fund a robust infrastructure budget,” says Villere. “Having said this, I don’t think this is going to scroll up in 2017. Sentiment is way up, housing starts will continue to improve, many new projects will surface, but I think that it will be 2018 and beyond before we will see major advances. We are just now starting to hit on all eight cylinders, after eight or nine years of sluggish economic expansion without a recession.” Villere has tremendous confidence in the California economy, referring to it as a “perpetual motion machine that can only be affected by the standard ups and downs of cyclical swings.” It is now up to our 40 senators and 80 assembly members to follow the legislative process and provide Californian’s with a transportation and infrastructure The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

budget that will be both powerful and sustainable. “The natural recovery in construction, although it has been shallow in growth, has now received a shot in the arm by the election of Donald Trump. Confidence affects sentiment and sentiment is self-fulfilling,” says Villere. “People will buy more new cars and trade up to larger homes, and even the Millennials will become a bigger factor in the

first time homebuyers market. Investing heavily in our country’s infrastructure has bipartisan support, and this will bode well for both Americans and Californians over the next several years.”

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INFRASTRUCTURE Public Infrastructure Design That’s More Than Utilitarian By Suzanne Seivright, Director of Local Governmental Affairs, CalCIMA

lthough public projects A can often take an empirical approach circumscribed by questions of money and measurements, the impacts of these public project spaces on how inhabitants of a community feel should not be overlooked. Public Project Color Aesthetics Color theorists have observed that color has an impact on how we feel which can result in qualitative decision making. This is to say that people can have a myriad of emotional responses to aesthetics and space. By harnessing this concept, color and design used within public projects can influence an individual’s feelings of inspiration which may be key to a community having a goal to encourage social and personal growth at places for learning such as schools. Public Project Costs During an ‘Age of Austerity’ Many have identified the United States’ current economic policy goals to be in an ‘age of 14

Brubaker-Mann, Inc. produces colored crushed rock in California’s high desert. Notable public projects that utilize their rock include (from left to right): City of Barstow – Fire Department in ¾” lilac, ¾” wine red, and river rock. Barstow Community College – Performing Arts Center in 2” bark brown. City of Helendale – Community Service District Office in 3/8” bark brown and a pathway of gold crusher fines.

austerity.’ In essence, this means that our policymakers’ desire to adopt economic policies that aim to reduce government budget deficits as our new fiscal discipline. In this ‘age of austerity,’ a cohort of public administrators and members of industry are required to be very creative about delivering a lot for a little as it relates to encompassing aesthetic qualities within public projects. A premier example of this creativity is clear in the California Department of Transportation’s (Caltrans’)

District 8 freeway widening project along Interstate 215 and Highway 91 which showcases murals on retaining walls that depict the heritage and culture of the communities they are placed. Caltrans District 8 covers the Counties of Riverside and San Bernardino in Southern California. Caltrans’ Landscape Architects say that modern technology has made it more feasible to include such elaborate aesthetic design that can accumulate to little additional cost sometimes representing less than 1 percent of the total The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

Concrete architectural treatments placed on retaining walls (from left to right, top then bottom): Cities of Grand Terrace and Colton – Civic gateway mural depictions of Santa Fe and Union Pacific trains. City of Riverside – Raincross symbol that has represented the city for over a century. City of Murrieta – Historic “Gem of the Valley” symbol that uses crushed white stone and ground blue and white glass material to add sparkle. University of California, Riverside – ‘Highlander’ mascot. County of San Bernardino – Mountain range. City of Moreno Valley – Military aircraft depiction of an F-16 attachment streaming vapor trails. City of Riverside – Raincross are mission arches.

project cost. Caltrans expects they might be able to do even more in the future, including sculpture such as within the middle of a roundabout. Because infrastructure is built with tax dollars, it is conceivable that demonstrating to taxpayers that their dollars are contributing to a better life is imperative for public administrators. World-class infrastructure that fosters a more pleasing commute may make the connection that an individual’s tax dollars went to something valuable. Architectural Concrete Mural Creation on Retaining Walls For Caltrans ‘Type 1’ retaining walls, the process used to create a mural with architectural concrete begins with a designer’s production of drawings that are then used to produce an elastomeric formliner using a 3D CAD machine that cuts out the drawings. Once the elastomeric mold has been cut out, it is The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

placed on a table and finished with different types of clay. Depending on the scale of detail and size of the mural, it may be produced in panels that are later connected and released to the end user. The elastomeric formliners are used in lieu of the more traditional plywood planks that face the thruway. They are then taken to the job site and placed on the ground in front of the rebar frame of the retaining wall. They are then tilted upright against the rebar frame on the existing wall and concrete is poured in from the top. Vibrators are used to eliminate air bubbles and ensure that the concrete settles into every crack and crevice. The concrete cures for two to four days before the elastomeric formliner is then removed. Sometimes, selected components of a mural will include precast concrete details such as the City of Murrieta’s “gem of the valley” and City of Moreno Valley’s airplanes. Precast components are factory

printouts prefabricated off site then taken to the site where they are erected. Caltrans sculpted shotcrete ‘soil nail’ retaining walls, such as the concrete treatment used on the Interstate 405 corridor in Los Angeles, provide the appearance of natural rock formations that blend with natural surroundings. This concrete treatment is often used along scenic rural corridors. To mimic rugged rock bulges, the retaining wall structure uses shotcrete which is applied directly on to the wall structure through a hose where compressed air is injected to increase the application velocity. This technique provides for an uneven load which will hold a sufficient amount of shotcrete thickness to allow for the sculpting of deep recesses for the forming of extensive relief. Specialized construction techniques to simulate rock fabrication are required to sculpt into the wet shotcrete surface to create realistic rock forms and textures and apply stains. 15

National Ready Mixed Concrete Co. in concert with Drill Tech provided contextual concrete treatment to the Interstate 405 Corridor in Los Angeles near the J. Paul Getty Museum. Specialized construction personnel simulate rock fabrication.

Caltrans ‘Highway Design Manual’ Aesthetic Goals Caltrans ‘Highway Design Manual (Manual) ’ for use on the California State highway system establishes uniform policies and procedures to carry out their projects. The Manual considers aesthetics in the planning and design process of all transportation projects to address visual quality, respond to community goals, and integrate transportation facilities into their context. In the Manual, Chapter 100 ‘Basic Design Policies,’ explains that “for any highway, having a pleasing appearance is an important consideration. Scenic values must be considered along with safety, utility, economy, and all the other factors considered in planning and design (Topic 109-Scenic Values in Planning and Design).” It goes on to say that design and other features should be in harmony with the setting and makes clear that construction materials that reflect the local character should be specified. The design of the transportation system should reflect community values and characteristics that may be achieved through enhancements that include art. Caltrans administers a ‘Transportation Art Program’ that provides a way to permit enhancement of existing transportation facilities by local communities and artists. 16

Using Concrete Surface Treatments to Deter Graffiti Depending on perception and varying factors, graffiti can be considered a provocative and colorful form of art or a nuisance and eyesore that our tax dollars are frittered away correcting. In either case, it is illegal act of vandalism that Caltrans aims to avert. The Manual states that, “In locations where graffiti has been excessive, concepts such as limiting accessibility, planting and surface treatments should be considered to deter graffiti (109.3 Aesthetic Factors).” This statement from the Manual is the basis for implementation of concrete architectural treatments. The safety of infrastructure maintenance workers is also a concern related to the removal of graffiti. Basically, these workers are tasked with removal of graffiti from walls that may be placed in locations that are exceedingly challenging to access resulting in increased risk to their safety. Context Sensitive Solutions Caltrans implements their ‘Director’s Policy on Context Sensitive Solutions’ which outlines an agency-wide effort to create an environment in which innovative solutions can flourish through community involvement. Context sensitive solutions encompass a collaborative approach with

stakeholders to develop a transportation facility that fits its physical setting and preserves scenic, aesthetic, historic and environmental resources, while maintaining safety and mobility. Using Aesthetics to Change Experience Neuroscience and psychological research has discussed the way aesthetics can affect an individual’s decisions, emotional response, and the way he or she feels about themself. This may be an underlying reason why public projects such as libraries, schools, and highway infrastructure often encompass structures, materials, and treatments that are iconic to the community they are built in. Aesthetic treatments can provide a community a sense of place when they travel, show visitors what a community has to offer, and can pay homage to a region’s heritage. If done correctly, aesthetic treatments used in public projects may be an excellent medium to demonstrate to a community the invaluable role of government in making our lives better by encouraging more meaningful, satisfying and joyful experiences through the spaces they create.

The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue



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SKF Maintenance Academy is designed for maintenance, reliability and technical personnel. The seminars focus on solutions, technologies and best practices to improve asset efficiency and reliability. Demonstrations target how to transform this knowledge into cost-saving actions. Instructors from SKF will cover the following topics: • Pursuing reliability in the cement/aggregate industry • Common problems and solutions for vibrating screens, conveyors and most common crushers. • Common problems and solutions for auxiliary equipment (centrifugal pumps and electric motors) • Bearing damage analysis • Mounting & dismounting practices (bearings, housings & seals) Cost: $65.00 Register online at: Dates/Locations April 11, 2017 San Diego Automotive Museum Balboa Park 2080 Pan American Plaza San Diego, CA 92101 Includes a free museum tour The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

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By Brian Hoover A.R. Wilson borrowed $10,000 from a relative in the late 1800s to purchase a 27-acre quarry outside of Watsonville that would rise through the decades to become the heart of Graniterock. The company incorporated on Feb. 14, 1900, and celebrates its 117th anniversary this year. In the early years, men used sledgehammers, picks, shovels and wheelbarrows to break and load rock. Workers lived in bunkhouses on the quarry property, ate at the cookhouse, and a day’s work involved filling up a rail car with aggregate, and determining whether the rock was 6-inch minus or 6-inch plus by measuring against the tines on their pitchfork. When thinking about the year 1900 and what the roadmap of the United States might have looked like, you begin to get a view of just how far our country’s infrastructure has come. From the onset of the transportation age, Graniterock (then Granite Rock Company) has been a major part of the infrastructure development in Northern California and on the Central Coast. The beginning of the 20th century saw the vast majority of Americans traveling and shipping freight by train. There were few paved roads as the occasional vehicle shared the compacted dirt paths with horse and buggies. Although the automobile was invented in the 19th century, it took Henry Ford and his assembly line to make it more commonly accessible to 18


Above: Graniterock’s mobile rock crusher, known as the Krupp, operates mostly at night for maximum efficiency at the A.R. Wilson Quarry in Aromas.

the American public. The Ford Model T was introduced in 1908 with 15 million sold by 1927 when the model was discontinued. Federal programs from the 1910s to the 1950s began the funding process for better roads and highways, and President Dwight Eisenhower signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act in 1956, creating a 41,000-mile national interstate system. Gas stations, motels, diners and other businesses thrived due to the advent of the automobile, as did road builders and other infrastructure related construction companies. Graniterock was there when the first roads, bridges, and airports were built. The company provided materials and construction crews on a long list of major projects in Northern California, including historical structures such as the Wells Fargo Bank building in San Francisco, and Gilroy City Hall built in 1905.

Graniterock holds the second oldest contractors license number (#22) in the state of California. The company was a pioneer of theconcrete and asphalt industry, operating some of the first asphalt and concrete plants in the state. Their first street contract was for work on Lake Avenue in Watsonville. The $18,000 contract included grading and building gutters, but more was to come as Graniterock salesmen were busy signing up neighborhoods that wanted their streets paved. In 1922, A.R. Wilson became Graniterock’s majority shareholder and president, while also founding Granite Construction Company as a separate entity. Granite Construction Company eventually spun off in 1936 and has been owned and operated autonomously ever since. Graniterock operates three divisions: aggregate, construction materials and construction services. The The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

Above: In the early 1900s, horse-drawn wagons carried rock from Graniterock’s Logan Quarry to the rail line for shipment to new projects taking place around the San Francisco Bay Area. Right: Graniterock’s 117-year history includes a wide range of inventions that have kept the company pushing ahead. From the steam engine to the diesel locomotive, each new tool helped Graniterock improve business operations.

aggregate division includes four mining locations and the company’s transportation business. Graniterock trucks are easily identified on the road with their signature orange boxes and green cabs. The materials division includes concrete and asphalt plants in South San Francisco, Redwood City, San Jose and Aromas and building materials businesses in Watsonville, Salinas, and Seaside. The construction division performs a wide range of heavy civil projects such as excavating, grading and paving for construction on major highways and airport runways, underground utilities, concrete flat work, and structures. The construction division is known for high-quality asphalt paving projects such as the recent $24 million Highway 101 paving project for Caltrans in southern Monterey County and the $15 million Caltrans job in 2016 that utilized 85,000 tons of rubberized asphalt on a seven-mile stretch of Interstate 280 between Woodside Drive and Highway 92. Additionally, the construction team performs demolition and grinding work, like when they demolished a giant parking lot The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

and roadway in Sunnyvale to make room for a 1.8 million-square-foot office campus. Graniterock’s construction division has moved into structures work. For example, the team installed a 150-footlong precast girder bridge over Alhambra Creek for the city of Martinez. They are currently working on other high-profile projects such as the BART extension project in San Jose. Graniterock has worked on more than 13 regional airport projects in recent years as both a contractor and supplier. Keith Severson, marketing communication manager for Graniterock, says the company's strong culture is based largely on being a privately-held, family-owned company that puts employees first. “The idea that it is family means that certain values and culture have been prevalent throughout the company’s history,” Severson said. “We can 19

Above: Cold in-place recycling, seen here in the beach town of Capitola, is an environmentally superior method to maintaining roadways through recycling the existing road. This process is also more economical and can be performed in less time than a traditional overlay. Right: Graniterock’s Construction Division has been involved with several projects at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport, including this concrete pour for a new apron for airplane parking.

talk about tons per hour or remarkable projects, but our story is about the people here at Graniterock, and it starts with A.R. Wilson, our founder.” Severson recognizes that Graniterock is regional in operations and points to this fact as one factor in keeping the family-like culture strong. “We primarily work from the Golden Gate Bridge, on over to the East Bay, and down to Monterey County in the south,” says Severson. “We are fortunate to have our A.R. Wilson Quarry in Aromas as the sort of center of our universe,” Severson explains that the A.R. Wilson Quarry is the largest hard rock quarry west of the Mississippi. “Our main quarry sits on the San Andreas Fault, so there are these incredible veins of granite that happen to be somewhat pre-fractured by Mother Nature, which makes for wonderful road material,” says Severson. Graniterock has three other working quarries where they harvest material, the sand 20

and gravel quarry in Hollister, a sand plant in Santa Cruz near Davenport and another sand plant in Quail Hollow, also in Santa Cruz County, which specializes in industrial glass sand. “This sand is a particular blend and size that works very well in the manufacturing of colored glass bottles, as well as for fiberglass insulation,” says Severson. “We wash this product, kiln dry it and ship it out to several different glass manufacturers.” Graniterock has mined rock from the A.R. Wilson Quarry for more than 100 years, and according to the company's communications director, Shanna Crigger, they have 100 more years to go. “Our company is a foundation of the community in which we live and work. We want to be good stewards of the land, following a list of best practices in the areas of harvesting, environmental sustainability, and community relations,” Crigger said. “We are

big land users, and we have been here for 117 years. If we want to be here for another 100 years, we must do it right. It is critical we take care of the land that has been entrusted to us.” Graniterock maintains its own nursery on-site and has a robust program to grow native species for use on reclamation projects. “We are propagating our own oak trees, grown from the very acorns that fall upon our property each day,” Crigger said. “We also follow best practices to preserve species like the red-legged frog and tiger salamanders and other important members of the wildlife community that live and dwell in and around our quarry.” Aaron Johnston, vice president of safety, environmental and quality services, works to ensure all Graniterock team members remain exemplary citizens at work and in their communities, setting an example by consistently following the highest standards of safety and environmental responsibility. The Conveyor • 2017 Winter Issue

"Personal accountability for safety, and authority to "Stop and make it safe," are the common threads woven throughout all of Graniterock's businesses and something in which we've always taken a proactive approach, so too is environmental responsibility," Johnston said. "Working with CalCIMA is one more way in which we can glean best practices from throughout the industry and offer broad-based support for other similar companies." Graniterock’s locations extend from Oakland to Monterey, with headquarters in Watsonville. The values of safety, quality, innovation, and respect for people and the environment were first established by the company’s founder, A.R. Wilson many years ago. “While Graniterock has strived to make our business better over the decades and launch new innovations, we’ve

Above: Asphalt paving is one of the company’s main construction services with a team known statewide for its professionalism and high quality production. Seen here on a night paving job at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport.

always held on to the core values that have defined us from the beginning,” Johnston said. “We believe those values have kept the company strong 117 years and will keep us strong into the

future," concludes Johnston. For more information on Graniterock, please visit their website at or call (831) 768-2000.

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The Conveyor - Winter Issue 2017  

The California Construction & Industrial Materials Association's (CalCIMA) publication proudly serving the aggregate, ready mix concrete and...

The Conveyor - Winter Issue 2017  

The California Construction & Industrial Materials Association's (CalCIMA) publication proudly serving the aggregate, ready mix concrete and...