A publication of Goodwyn Mills Cawood
Building Communities Finding the will of the people through community planning GMC heads south to the Sunshine State
It's back to school we go A look at projects underway across the U.S.
We believe in community, collaboration and using the power of creativity and hard work to make a difference - in our hearts, homes, city, nation and world. We believe in hope, progress, beauty, and big ideas. We believe that people like GMC Manifesto us, need us. We are not just an engineering firm. We are not just architects. We are artists, designers, thinkers, doers, makers, and storytellters dedicated to doing great work, for good. We partner with passionate and like-minded individuals, businesses, organizations, and causes that have aggressive hopes and goals for tomorrow and beyond. Dreaming big is the only way to make big dreams come true, and we know that our solutions can only be as great as the people we serve. Communities are built by people, not companies. And it is that foundational concept that drives how we approach every project, big or small. Because it’s the passion and drive of individuals that feeds the growth and development of what’s next. Together, we will be smart. We will be relevant. We will be meaningful. We will be kind, supportive, enthusiastic and – at the very least – the very best we can be. We are – and will continue to be – a collaborative organization driven by the power of building better, happier, healthier, thriving communities. And we are committed to working with folks who share our vision for realizing their full potential, because we know that great engineering and architecture helps make communities better, for everyone. We believe in community, collaboration and using the power of creativity and hard work to make a difference - in our hearts, homes, city, nation and world. We believe in hope, progress, beauty, and big ideas. We believe that people like us, need us. We are not just an engineering firm. We are not just architects. We are artists, designers, thinkers, doers, makers, and storytellters dedicated to doing great work, 2 SCHEMA
ON THE COVER During the Lee County Comprehensive Planning process, the GMC Planning team held several town hall meetings to understand the community principles.
CONTENTS Schema is a quarterly publication of GMC designed to keep clients, business partners, employees and others informed on company news and to provide insight on industry trends and issues. Donâ€™t miss an issue! Subscribe at www.gmcnetwork.com
AN INDISPENSIBLE GUIDE: LONG-RANGE COMMUNITY PLANNING
9 GMC ACQUIRES FLORIDA-BASED FIRM
IT'S BACK TO SCHOOL WE GO
THE SKY IS THE LIMIT
12 PERRY ENGINEERING JOINS GMC NASHVILLE
AROUND THE NETWORK
An Indispensable Guide Communities find direction, will of the people through long-range planning By Brandon Bias AICP, LEED GREEN ASSOCIATE
odayâ€™s comprehensive long-range plans are not
a strong vision and set of principles provides a community
strictly limited to the large municipality equipped
with the ability to alter or adapt the plan when specific
with an army of planners and a sizeable budget.
recommendations may no longer be relevant.
On the contrary, they are proving just as valuable
As a more recent trend, communities of all sizes have turned
to small towns and counties across the country, as
each seek to steer their community toward a vision that is a better match to core principles, needs and wants.
to long-range plans to more succinctly define a sense of place. Parks and public spaces are key locations for making that happen. Jefferson County and Birmingham, for example, had
Back in the 1970s and 1980s, comprehensive plans were simpler
a unique opportunity to improve community health through
and less inclusive, and would merely identify a number of tasks
a master plan that includes trails, bike lanes, sidewalks and
to accomplish over a designated time period. Today, they are
greenways. Since the Red Rock Ridge and Valley Trail Planâ€™s
more flexible documents that establish parameters for future
creation and adoption in 2012, with the assistance of GMC,
decision making even as factors change. Placing the focus upon
nearly 60 miles of the park system have been completed.
While no comprehensive long-range plan can be pigeonholed into a particular template, most communities have one thing in common – limited financial resources. Therefore, goals are often tempered by financial realities. In the end, the plan is meant to guide a community through a series of choices over a designated period, helping it realize its vision and follow its principles.
The Process No matter the intent of the plan or size of the client, planners take the critical first step of assessing current conditions by researching demographics, land use, prior city growth, transportation infrastructure, community facilities, current services and a host of other factors. In the process, they search for areas in need of improvement, as well as reasons for improvements in other areas – in other words, why one neighborhood has been more successful than another. Planners examine previous plans to determine how successful, or unsuccessful, they've been, and in the process create a reliable snapshot of the community. Beginning at this stage and throughout the process, participation and involvement is essential. It is recommended that a steering or advisory committee comprised of key stakeholders in the community be used to facilitate the process. Generally, these participants are engaged in the dayto-day business of the community. Along the way, planners ask some key questions – Is this right? Is something missing? Did we spend too much time on something that is not significant? The next planning step is community engagement. GMC planners meet with citizens in the community across all geographies and demographics to gain a better understanding of who they are, who they think they are and who they think they want to be in the future. They subsequently record information that is later distilled to create a vision for the community, define community principles and determine important recommendations for the future. The process begins with a general community meeting, or community workshop, where participants are assigned to small groups in order to facilitate conversations on various topics. During these exercises, planners utilize a large map to identify weak and strong areas in the community. Fundamentally, they want to understand the participants’ vision of the future with a series of “foot in the door” questions – Why do they want to do these things? What do they want to improve? Along the way, the preconceived notions of both planners GMC 5
and city leaders are put to the test. For example, a community center in the middle of a low-income neighborhood might be considered a strength by city leaders, but a poorly maintained eyesore by its residents. This is an important aspect of the community engagement process to challenge expectations with the realities “on the ground.” As a result, planners hope to understand as many dynamics of the community as possible to better plan for the future. Next, planners organize a series of goals around various planning elements. These can address land use, transportation, community facilities and services, housing, economic development, etc., and are calibrated on a community-by-community basis. Citizens and the advisory committee are engaged at different following stages to ensure the planners have not veered away from the community vision or principles. Planners then summarize the information into a succinct final comprehensive plan document. The quality and appearance of the final document is an important part of the process, since it will likely be used as a marketing tool to attract potential investment.
Discovering the Will of the People: Brewton, Alabama For the small town of Brewton, Alabama – population 5,500 – the overriding goal in developing its back-to-back five-year plans was to seek out and execute the will of the people. Mayor “Yank” Lovelace, a business owner with a penchant for planning, says the process brought a lot of new ideas to the table as well as helped achieve certain gains, such as attracting the 300-employee IT company, Provalus, to the town in 2017. Lovelace says the dual long-range plans provided an operative way for him to do his job. “If the people say that's what they want and I'm working that plan, then I’m doing what I was elected to do,” he says. Multiple open forums held at the beginning of the process proved to be an eye-opening experience. “We started to notice a pattern. At the end, we had developed a fairly comprehensive plan. For a mayor and city council, that gives us the authority to go forth and work on those problems.” Putting the projects from the first five-year plan on white boards enabled the city to track its accomplishments, and even finish most of the projects within four years. When tackling the city’s second five-year plan shortly after his re-election in 2016, the planning team chose to engage more of the community. “We held two or three public hearings at City
Hall, then set up public meetings in each district and made the councilmen responsible for getting people to attend. That way we received more input and more people were involved in the process.” At the end of the hearings, an initial draft of the plan was created. “We said, ‘OK, here are all the items that you're saying you want. Which of these items are more important?’” From there, it went to the planning board and the city council for approval. If there is one common denominator in the Brewton plan, it is that that all the projects seek to improve quality of life, whether through street improvements, parks, rodeo arena, landscaping or Christmas displays. “Quality of life includes your schools, your roads, your activities,” Lovelace says. “We now have a full-time program manager that does nothing but schedule events, such as music or kite flying on the day before Easter. We try to have something every weekend. During Christmas, our sales tax went up 10 percent as people came out to see all the lights we've got up.” Another offshoot of the plan was the creation of a natural gas district, which has become a vital funding mechanism for the city. With so many changes, the rest of the state and country are beginning to take notice. In fact, the city has been ranked nationally by various groups for its favorable living environment. “The State of Alabama and the governor all went crazy over the fact that a little town like Brewton could get a computer tech company,” Lovelace says. “That's a huge deal. Site selectors are looking for reasons to check you off the list, not for reasons to put you on it.” Undoubtedly, the city’s commitment to longrange planning, developed with the assistance of GMC, has been a contributing factor to its success.
Mobile, Alabama Transforms Itself Earlier this decade, Mobile, Alabama, was facing a number of challenges, including limited mobility, sprawling conditions and declining neighborhoods. The city was continually losing population to both the west and east, a consequence of not having taken an introspective look at itself or its goals in nearly 50 years. Shayla Beaco, executive director of Build Mobile, says the city was at a pivotal point. When its new mayor, Sandy Stimpson, took office in 2013, community leaders urged him to spearhead the creation of a long-range plan for the city. The “Map for Mobile” is a shining example of how a long-range plan can literally transform a municipality’s future. As such, GMC 7
table at the front end of the process.” Encouraged by the level of participation, the team realized that it needed to conduct additional neighborhood outreach efforts to more effectively target individualized needs. Ultimately, more than 50 neighborhood meetings were held over a year’s time. “The common theme that we started to hear was that people wanted a greater emphasis on connectivity; they wanted to be able to utilize the pedestrian amenities that are symptomatic of good, strong neighborhoods,” Beaco says. “People wanted to walk to school, walk to the corner grocery, and walk to their neighbor's houses in a safe and secure way.” “They also wanted to leverage our 300-year-old city’s historic character to maintain a sense of identity throughout our neighborhoods. The conversation began to focus on ways to protect the design qualities of these neighborhoods.” Additionally, citizens wanted an environment that encouraged commercial development opportunities and enhanced quality of life. That meant re-zoning certain areas to boost Mobile’s comprehensive plan lays out an exciting vision for the city’s long-term preservation, revitalization and growth. The core values that guide the plan, defined through a robust public process, include a stronger, mixed-use downtown, supported by diverse and connected neighborhoods, businesses and open spaces. Most importantly, the plan includes realizable action steps to ensure that recommendations become reality.
“Because we'd gone so long without a plan, we really wanted to tie our city initiatives to a planning process,” Beaco says. “Our mayor asked that it be the type of plan that we could utilize on a regular basis and had measurables associated with it. That way we could provide citizens with a sense of accountability.”
in 2016, and we are now toward the end of our zoning overhaul."
The plan’s early success can be attributed to one factor – Mobile did a stellar job in facilitating community engagement. The first public meeting far exceeded expectations when more than 600 people showed up. “Being a new administration, it was important to ensure that all Mobileans were given an opportunity to be heard,” Beaco says. “We needed to make sure that all of the underserved areas of our city were at the 8 SCHEMA
The city initiated the plan’s first phase by laying out its “vision” in November 2015, receiving a unanimous vote of approval from the Planning Commission. “We started out at 10,000 feet; now we're slowly starting to land this plane,” Beaco says. “The next step for us was to introduce our general land use plan and major thoroughfare plan. Those two documents were adopted Beaco says the plan is meant to be a living document that can adapt in response to changing market dynamics, demographics and needs. “This plan continues to live on. It has benchmarks within it that help us to know where we need to start and finish a new effort, but it's going to run, in our minds, for the life span of our city process.” Indeed, that is the essence of a dependable long-range plan. It is not merely a list of projects to check off a list, but is instead a flexible, malleable document that ultimately becomes a reflection of the very community it represents.
GMC heads south to the Sunshine State
MC recently expanded its geographic footprint and depth of resources with the acquisition of SaltoCo, LLC, an architectural and planning firm in Sarasota, Florida.
SaltCo has been providing design services to clients in the central Florida region for more than a decade. While their portfolio encompasses a variety of project types, including hospitality, transportation facilities, retail and other general commercial build-outs, their primary focus has been healthcare design. “This acquisition complements the work GMC currently
President of Architecture, said. “We are confident that SaltCo’s reputation as a quality design firm in central Florida, coupled with GMC’s multi-disciplined approach and reach spanning the Southeast will create a solid partnership to better serve our clients and provide new opportunities for our staff.” The GMC Florida team is currently working on several projects including pharmacy relocation and replacement projects for Manatee Memorial and Lakewood Ranch hospitals, in addition to a CT replacement, pharmacy relocation and replacement, and nuclear medicine upgrades at DeSoto Memorial Hospital.
commitment to provide local service, backed by a regional
The former SaltCo employees will continue working from their current location at 2650 Bahia Vista Street, Suite 302,
network of professionals,” Freddie Lynn, GMC Senior Vice
operating as GMC.
has underway in Florida and further demonstrates our
It's Back to School We Go! Students across the country returned to school for the 2018-19 school year, some entering brand new buildings designed to inspire learning and foster new memories.
Clearview Elementary School On August 9, Troup County School District opened the doors to the brand-new Clearview Elementary School in LaGrange, Georgia. This pre-K through fifth-grade facility replaced the existing elementary school with a 91,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art building. Clearview Elementary welcomed 700 students for the 2018-19 school year, and will eventually accommodate up to 900 students with pre-designed core areas that meet the Georgia Department of Education’s square footage requirements for educational facilities. GMC served as the architect for the project, with Carroll Daniel Construction Company as the Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR). The project team was challenged to deliver a custom design with unique features in a short time frame of just 14 months. Utilizing early release packages and a CMAR approach, the school was designed and constructed on time and within the owner's budget. 10 SCHEMA
By keeping the safety of students at the forefront of the design, faculty and teachers can focus on what matters most. The team designed the main entry with one way in and one way out, utilizing a secure vestibule and ensuring lockdown in the instance of a security threat. To support the community at large, the gym, multipurpose room and meeting areas are accessible after hours without providing access to the rest of the school. Inspired by the community’s enthusiasm over the recent debut of Great Wolf Lodge in LaGrange, the design team incorporated a nature theme throughout the elementary school. Students in the “wolf pack” can be found eating lunch under a large tree in the cafeteria or spending time in the “creek of learning” in the media center. Nature-themed elements along the colored hallways also serve to help the students navigate around their new school.
20 18-20 19
Thompsonâ€™s Station Elementary and Middle School One day later and a few hundred miles away, students in Williamson County, Tennessee, loaded up their backpacks for the first day back, with 620 elementary and 570 middle school students entering the doors to Thompson's Station Elementary and Middle School for the first time. This is the second K-8 school GMC has designed for Williamson County Schools. The footprint marries an elementary school and a middle school with a connecting spine between the two major classroom wings and one wing of auxiliary spaces including cafeteria, two gyms and an auditorium. The connecting spine at the center of the facility houses a media center, art labs and flexible classroom spaces for teacher training, testing and collaborative learning. Two grand staircases connect the two-story academic wings and the atrium space outside that serves as the pre-function
space for the auditorium and cafeteria. The school includes an administration wing, 68 classrooms and four special needs classrooms, art, speech, computer, resource, band, music, science and flex classrooms. Auxiliary spaces include middle and elementary gyms, a stage, separate cafeterias served by a shared kitchen and a separate media center with shared circulation desk. It is the power of education that inspires GMC to design spaces that serve as tools for learning, and we are so excited for these students to start the year in their new schools. We hope it fosters a love for learning and sets the stage for deep personal growth during these next few years. Hereâ€™s to welcoming these bright minds with open arms, as we encourage them to be bold, think outside the box and help build a better tomorrow! GMC 11
Perry Engineering joins GMC in Nashville
ver the last couple of years, GMC’s Nashville office has experienced significant growth. Building on this momentum, GMC is proud to officially welcome Perry Engineering, a Nashville-based civil engineering firm specializing in commercial and residential site
development, to the GMC family. Perry Engineering’s portfolio of work includes civil engineering, land planning and site development for private developers, major corporations, public institutions and other clients throughout the Southeast. Randy Perry, founder and principal of Perry Engineering, will now lead GMC’s Nashville engineering group as vice president. “Perry Engineering’s strengths in civil site development complement our Nashville team’s municipal engineering expertise, allowing us to provide 12 SCHEMA
The new Paris Landing State Park Inn is one of several projects GMC and Perry Engineering are currently working on together.
more comprehensive engineering services in Tennessee,”
GMC and Perry Engineering have collaborated on projects
GMC CEO Jeffrey Brewer said. “Our Nashville office has
in the Nashville area over the years, including multiple
grown immensely over the last year, and we’re excited to
projects for Williamson County Schools such as
further expand our range of services within the region.”
Brentwood STEM School, Page Middle and High schools
GMC’s depth of resources and regional network of professionals will also allow the Perry Engineering team to better serve their existing client base, which encompasses regional and national companies and developers.
and several auditorium projects, and the new Paris Landing State Park Inn for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. “We’re thrilled to have Randy and his team join us in
“Becoming a part of the GMC family is a great opportunity for
Nashville,” Russ Hale, GMC Regional Vice President in
Perry Engineering and our clients,” Perry said. “As a small firm,
Tennessee, said. “Our firms have worked together seamlessly
there’s only so much you can do with the capacity you have.
in the past, and this acquisition was a logical next step in
GMC has so many different positive resources to draw from,
furthering the collective impact we can have in Tennessee
and we’re really excited about that.”
and beyond.” GMC 13
NEW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL FORT PAYNE CITY SCHOOLS
Under Construction Snapshots of a few of projects currently underway
 Fort Payne Elementary School Fort Payne, Alabama The new elementary school in Fort Payne is part of a larger school initiative by Fort Payne City Schools to renovate and upgrade its educational capabilities and service to the public. The new $18 million school will replace the existing Wills Elementary School, offering additional capacity and the latest technological accommodations for its students when completed in 2020. Being one of the top 20 school districts in Alabama, it is important for Fort Payne to continue offering a quality educational experience for its students. The city is located along the I-59 corridor, which makes it attractive to industrial prospects and other potential job creators. Investments in the city’s education system will serve to complement efforts made by regional economic development leadership.
 Durango Medical Office Building and Ambulatory Surgery Center Durango, Colorado Capital Growth Medvest is planning its first development in the “Centennial State.” Located in Durango, Colorado, the $31 million facility will be an expansion of the Rivergate Medical Campus and Animas Surgical Hospital, which is a part of Surgery Partners’ national network. GMC is the architect for the new 73,125-square-foot, threestory medical office building (MOB), anchored by an ambulatory surgery center (ASC) on the ground floor. The plans include a parking structure providing 300 spaces to improve access for patients, visitors and staff. The project is slated for completion near the end of 2019. Brasfield & Gorrie was selected as the general contractor for the medical facility.
Harpeth Square Franklin, Tennessee
Lakeside Lodge Clemson Clemson, South Carolina
Developers broke ground last October on Harpeth Square, a “oneof-a-kind urban life space” in the heart of downtown Franklin, Tennessee. GMC is performing the construction materials testing for the $90-million mixed-use development, which will feature The Harpeth, a four+ diamond, 119-room Curio Hilton Hotel; 150 leased residences with hotel-style amenities; 15,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space; more than 3,600 square feet of office space; and a five-story concrete parking garage. Harpeth Square is located within walking distance of Franklin’s historic Public Square, downtown commerce area, entertainment and the Harpeth River, from which its name is derived. GMC’s Geotech team has conducted deep foundation inspections, structural fill placement observation and testing, post tension concrete inspection and testing and structural steel inspections for the development, which is slated for completion in Summer 2019.
Lakeside Lodge Clemson is a 118-unit condo-hotel and luxury lakefront resort located within minutes of Clemson University. The four-story complex will comprise a mixture of studio, two- and three-bedroom condos for sale. What sets this new development apart? Lakeside Lodge will offer all of the amenities of a high-end hotel, including 24/7 concierge service, housekeeping and maintenance, restaurant and bar, fitness center, pool and hot tub, meeting space, activity field, tailgate area, fire pit and walking paths. Condo owners will be able to rent out their units utilizing the on-site rental program, which is managed by the property management company. The two- and three-bedroom plans are lockable, meaning owners can rent out one or two of the bedrooms rather than the entire unit if they prefer. GMC is the project architect, in addition to providing civil, environmental and geotechnical engineering services. Clemson Family Investors, LLC is the developer, and Sherman Construction is the general contractor.
 Newnan Fire Station #4 Newnan, Georgia Construction is underway on a new fire station for the City of Newnan. The 10,000-square-foot facility will include two apparatus bays, a common area featuring a kitchen and lounge area and six bunk rooms. The parking area includes 29 spaces and an access drive to ease traffic flow in the apparatus bay and around the entire facility. GMC is providing architecture, interior design, civil engineering, landscape and electrical engineering services for the project. Criser Troutman Tanner Consulting Engineers is the structural engineer, and HHB Engineers, PC, is the mechanical and plumbing engineer.
The Sky is the Limit!
rones. Everyone is talking about them. But why? What’s the big deal? Are they actually more than a toy that allows people to become pilots with just a smart phone and remote control?
The answer is yes. There is much more to drones than inflight fun. They are a growing trend in the business world, specifically the AEC industry. GMC has several departments using drone technology. With five FAA-certified drone operators, GMC goes to great effort to utilize the most current technologies to better serve our clients and remain ahead of the competition. Often, cutting edge technologies decrease cost, increase safety and provide a superior level of information. GMC employs rigorous processes to ensure that any new technology or technique that we offer to our clients is tested and meets the highest QA/QC standards.
GMC Survey utilized a sense Fly eBee drone to capture a topo of Macon Downtown Airport. This mosaic image stitched together 1,179 photos that were captured over four flights over the airport.
other outputs such as contour lines and 3D mesh, allow GMC to gather the most accurate and detailed data available, and to do it all in-house. Our FAA-certified remote pilots fly the drone; our technicians process the data; and our engineers, planners
As an option on appropriate projects, GMC currently offers the use of a professional mapping drone, which collects unmatched data and imaging.
and architects design using the data. This saves time and cost
Shawn Yuhasz is a professional land surveyor (PLS) in GMC’s Mobile office and one of the firm’s certified drone pilots. Shawn operates the senseFly eBee® drone, which is far more advanced than a hobby store Christmas toy. This high-tech machine can cover up to 4 square miles in a single automated flight, acquiring images with up to a ground sampling distance (GSD) of down to 1.5 cm (0.6 in) per pixel. The eBee’s highresolution aerial images are transformed into a digital georeferenced orthoimage and point cloud. These, along with
Environmental Engineering Intern Kade Campbell recently
synergies for our clients, as well as limiting personnel exposure to active construction sites on busy airfields. earned his drone certification and has already incorporated drone technology into several environmental projects. The drone can provide real-time aerial 12-megapixel imagery and 4k video of the project, as opposed to waiting on Google Earth’s updates, allowing for faster, more accurate responses to project questions or issues. Kade uses the DJI Phantom 4 drone for photography and videography, which allows the Environmental team to:
• monitor the progress of stream restorations during and post construction; • present projects through phases of restoration; • locate areas of stressed vegetation or patches of invasive species within the riparian buffer that would otherwise be difficult to see from the ground; • view obstructions within restored channels (i.e., head cuts, beaver dams, etc.); and • identify areas of concern before walking a project site to locate focus points. GMC has used drones in various ways for a diverse range of project types throughout our footprint. At the Lanett Municipal Airport Runway Realignment Project, drone technology was used to provide an existing grade surface for quantity calculations during construction, with eight flights being conducted between October 2017 and August 2018. A drone was used to conduct a tree canopy survey at the StatesboroBulloch County Airport in Georgia, which provided 3D-point cloud data to identify obstruction areas within runway approach zones. For the Mobile Area Water & Sewer System Three Mile Creek Project, the project team utilized drone technology to obtain ground topographical data to incorporate with traditional survey data for the development of a ground surface model and provided up-to-date imagery of the site to assist in decision making going forward.
Aerial view of the Wetumpka Sports Complex captured by drone photography to be used in project development
Drones have also been used to provide: an existing grade surface for volume calculations to estimate the amount of debris at an old mill site; planimetric and as-built data for completion of ALTA surveys; existing grade surface for quantity calculations for road construction projects; existing grade surface/as-built surveys for civil site design of new park facilities; and photography and videography to monitor progress at mitigation banks and stream restoration projects, just to name a few. There is no doubt, we can expect to see this growing trend in more disciplines throughout our industry. Incorporating new technology is how we grow and reach new heights.
Recap and Virtual Surveyor software uses Drone orthophotographs, Point Clouds (Las Files), and Digital Surface Model (DSM) to offer 3D Modelling of project sites. The contours of the Daphne Landfill were used to determine topographic relief and volumetric site data.
Around the Network
The Impact of Education GMC Georgia had the opportunity to sponsor two student speakers, Breonna Thomas and Michael Vescio, at the Georgia School Board Association 2018 Summer Conference and Delegate Assembly. These two bright students shared their perspectives on public education and the profound impact it has had on their lives. Their stories were truly inspiring and served as a reminder of the importance of organizations like our state school board associations, that work to ensure excellence in our school systems.
Mobile Thinks Pink For the last three years, the GMC Mobile office has started to “think pink” during the month of October in support of the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. To garner a little friendly competition, the office split into two teams – one led by Denise King and the other by Chris Lunsford – to see which could raise the most money. Both teams got creative with their fundraising efforts, including everything from selling “Boo Buckets” full of treats for Halloween and an office lunch featuring the GMC Mobile team’s prize-winning chili from the 2018 ACS Chili Cook-Off, to hosting the Big Pink Chair event at the LoDa Artwalk in downtown Mobile on Friday, October 14. The huge inflatable pink chair was on display for members of the community to come take a photo, along with writing the names of loved ones affected by breast cancer on the “I Care Because…” board that was on display. The GMC team surpassed their fundraising goal prior to the Walk on October 27, with no signs of letting up as they continue Making Strides Against Breast Cancer.
Photo: U.S. Department of Education
School Safety First GMC Senior Vice President Freddie Lynn Jr., represented AIA Alabama at a listening session hosted by the U.S. Department of Education on behalf of the Federal Commission on School Safety. Freddie served on the panel alongside Governor Kay Ivey and other Alabama leaders to discuss how schools, school districts, local and state government agencies and others can improve school safety. The event followed three previous listening sessions held in several regions of the country, and provided an opportunity for state and local officials and the general public to be heard and provide recommendations to the Commission. Safety and security are fundamental to education design, and GMC is proud to be part of the efforts to ensure the safety of our students and teachers remains a top priority.
Out of the Park
Clean Sweep GMC Greenville joined our clients at Renewable Water Resources for their annual River Sweep on October 4. The group geared up and made a clean sweep of the Reedy River and Brushy Creek, filling bags with trash they picked up along the way. According to ReWa, the cumulative results over past years can easily be seen, as they only collect a fraction of the trash they used to. ReWa’s mission is to enhance the community’s quality of life by transforming wastewater into renewable resources through responsible and innovative solutions. Activities like the River Sweep further their goal to promote a cleaner environment and to protect the public health and water quality of Upstate South Carolina’s waterways, while developing necessary sewer infrastructure.
Our Nashville and Birmingham teams participated in their local PARK(ing) Day festivities, transforming parking spots into temporary public parks within their cities for the day. Celebrated globally on September 21, PARK(ing) Day is designed to call attention to the need for more urban open space, to generate critical debate around how public space is created and allocated and to improve the quality of urban human habitat. The GMC Nashville team partnered with Doster Construction Company, Interface and Gardens of Babylon to create a miniature park for the day, and even had a special surprise visit from Nashville Mayor David Briley. In Birmingham, our team joined forces with the ASLA Alabama Chapter, Freshwater Land Trust, Homewood Greenspace Initiative, Homewood Police Foundation and SYNLawn to set up a fun and festive community space in downtown Homewood. Just a couple weeks later, GMC Huntsville designed and constructed one of 12 mini parks for Downtown Huntsville, Inc.’s 2018 Pop-Up Parks event. Every year, The Rocket City “moves out the cars, and brings in the people” to showcase the city’s unique characteristics by converting parking spots around the downtown square into temporary public spaces. The community is invited to come out and play on the mini parks during the free, 10-day event and experience all downtown has to offer.
GMC OFFICES ALABAMA
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1450 Greene Street, Suite 505
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Montgomery, AL 36117
Augusta, GA 30901
Andalusia, AL 36420
T (334) 271-3200
T (706) 251-9099
SAVANNAH (We've Moved!)
T (334) 222-2699 AUBURN (We've Moved!)
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35 Abercorn Street, Suite 210
2178 Moores Mill Road
Vernon, AL 35592
Savannah, GA 31401
Auburn, AL 36830
T (205) 695-9137
T (912) 226-1667
T (334) 364-0057 BIRMINGHAM 2701 1st Avenue South, Suite 100 Birmingham, AL 35233 T (205) 879-4462 EUFAULA
SARASOTA (New Office!)
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1219 Wayne Street
Sarasota, FL 34239
Columbia, SC 29201
T (941) 312-5523 | F (941) 312-5529
T (803) 766-1235
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