When the city of Topeka was faced with the challenge of quickly repairing a 400-foot stretch of deteriorated concrete on a major road, GBA answered the call. After wear and tear from winter weather, a rapid rehabilitation of 21st Street’s concrete pavement, raised median, and curb and gutter were needed. The road carries 27,000 vehicles a day, is surrounded by businesses and connects to I-470. Efficiency on the 21st Street rehabilitation project was not only important for the daily commuters and businesses, but also for a previously scheduled Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) project on the adjacent interstate and ramps.
GBA’s Transportation, Robotics and GIS groups partnered together with a focus on creating a quick and durable solution. To do this, GBA bypassed traditional survey methods that would have added to the overall project time and instead opted for using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). This emerging technology allowed GBA to collect detailed aerial imagery in a fraction of the time. Images were processed using orthorectification, which allowed all data to be used to scale. The high-resolution imagery was added to a GIS-based web application that allowed for real-time coordination with the client. GBA was able to design and draw the roadway repairs in GIS and collaboratively acquire input and approval from the client.
The resulting GIS database was imported into ArcGIS Pro, from which GBA created plans for the new road surface. Within four weeks of acquiring the imagery and three days of an agreed-upon solution, the plans were approved for the project contractor, Sunflower Paving, to take to the 21st street rehabilitation to construction.
City of Topeka, Kansas
GBA partnered with LAND3 Studio for the Hobby Hill Park improvements. The team began with conceptual site layouts, infrastructure coordination and code analysis to prepare for park improvements at the 39.3-acre park.
GBA’s civil/site engineering team assisted with site development and public infrastructure improvements from preliminary design through construction for Hobby Hill. This included grading, storm sewer, site lighting and pedestrian bridge structural design.
Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City is making major investments in its sanitary sewer system through its Smart Sewer Program. GBA’s Water Environment team has worked on several large projects for the city, including Brush Creek Area 2.
The Brush Creek Area project includes rehabilitation recommendations for approximately 405,350 LF of sewer and 2,722 manholes in a densely populated area. The project area consists of high-profile locations like Westport and the Plaza, surrounded by residential areas ranging from low-income housing to gated, multimillion-dollar mansions. The ability to communicate with a range of businesses and homeowners was key to the success of this project. This area’s proximity to the state line also led to a portion of the sewer crossing over into Kansas, which meant that GBA also had to coordinate with another city.
Prior to construction, GBA held two public meetings with stakeholders and homeowners. At these meetings, GBA presented the project’s timeline and provided contact information. This coordination with residents will continue throughout the construction phase.
Most sewers in the project area are over 50 years old and surrounded by development. This led to GBA using trenchless technologies to rehabilitate the sewers as much as possible to minimize surface disruptions. Trenchless technologies were cured in place pipe (CIPP) and pipe bursting.
GBA also repaired damaged service laterals up to the right-of-way or easement boundary. In some cases, we were able to use CIPP to line the service lateral connection to the main sewer from inside the pipe. The laterals were accessed through manholes, so no surface disruption was caused. Where the lateral was in bad condition, GBA had to perform open-cut repairs. In some cases, the team rerouted the service and connected it elsewhere on the main in order to avoid damage to porches, sheds or trees. The final design resulted in $17 million in repairs divided between two construction contractors.
GBA continues to work closely with the Smart Sewer Program, contractors and stakeholders to ensure the project continues to run smoothly. When completed, the result will be renewed sewers that will last for decades, leading to reduced overflows and basement backups and improved environmental quality.
City of Kansas City, Missouri
405,350 feet of sewer
Over the past decade, GBA’s team of transportation experts were involved in the Route N Improvements in Cottleville, Missouri—from funding applications to final design. The firm managed the project through two phases. This involved assisting the city with project funding applications and coordinating team meetings amongst funding sources, which included MoDOT cost-share, East-West Gateway LPA funding, St. Charles County Road Board and Great Rivers Greenway.
GBA’s responsibilities on Route N included:
- Conceptual layouts
- Preliminary and final design
- Right-of-way negotiation
- Hydraulic analysis of the Dardenne Creek floodway impacts
- Design of a 10-foot multi-use Great Rivers Greenway trail
- Construction staging
- Traffic control and detours
- RCB culvert design
Effective utility coordination and floodway analysis to raise the roadway was crucial to the budget and schedule. GBA worked extensively with utilities to design around conflicts that would exceed available funds. A strong partnership with MoDOT, SEMA, St. Charles County and the city of Cottleville helped communicate changing floodplain conditions and maintain a no-rise condition.
City of Cottleville, Missouri
Council Bluffs, Iowa
The city of Council Bluffs, Iowa, planned for capacity upgrades of the 28th Street Stormwater Pumping Station and upstream storm sewers in response to ongoing storm flooding. GBA completed the study, design, bidding and construction-phase services for the installation of a new stormwater pump station, which has the capacity to pump 161.5 MGD.
The station was designed to be phased from the initial installation of two non-clog pumps to four mixed-flow pumps. These pumps are equipped with 250 HP motors and variable frequency drives (VFDs). The finished design features include:
- Automatic self-cleaning bar screen
- Flow diversion structure with sluice gates for controlling flow
- Electrical equipment and pump removal equipment installed in a building over the wet wall
- 600 kW generator
- Switchboard with automated power transfer functionality
- Four 36-inch-diameter welded steel discharge pipes that convey flow to a discharge structure on the Missouri River
The design also included collaboration with city staff for the pump control and SCADA system connection.
During the construction phase, GBA conducted two controls meetings to discuss communications between the PLC-based control system and the switchboard, generator, VFDs, sluice gate actuators, bar screen controls and pump control modules. To monitor the site, four security cameras were included: two fixed and two PTZ. A managed ethernet switch was provided to facilitate connection to the city’s SCADA system. GBA performed commissioning services for the pump station during construction and at startup.
City of Council Bluffs, Iowa
ACEC Nebraska 2015 Merit Award
Iowa APWA Project of the Year ($5M-$25M)
Lee’s Summit, Missouri
Paragon Star, a 300-acre, mixed-use development, is a case of what can happen when stakeholders envision work, play and living spaces together in one community. Located in Lee’s Summit, the development will include recreational, office, retail, hotel, entertainment, convention and residential uses.
GBA provided civil, traffic, environmental and survey services for Paragon Star’s preliminary and final plans, as well as construction documents.
Civil engineering services included:
- Existing conditions plan
- General layout
- Primary grading plan
- Dimension plan
- Utility plan
- Lighting plan
- Preliminary street alignments
Traffic services included:
- Base traffic study
- Additional analysis of a soccer complex
- Phased development analysis
- Simulation of interchange area
Environmental services included:
- Stormwater report development
- Stormwater detention study
- Flood study
Survey services included:
- Aerial mapping
- Utilities and stream cross-sections survey
- Property work
While providing these services, communication with the project team was key. Balancing the needs and permitting requirements of multiple jurisdictions made communication critical to project success. The Army Corp of Engineers, Missouri Department of Transportation, city of Lee’s Summit, city of Kansas City, Jackson County, Jackson County Rail Authority, Blue Valley Sewer District, Community Improvement District and Transportation Development District all played a role in this development.
This teamwork will lead to many unique features that the surrounding community will enjoy upon completion. Its location off I-470 and View High Drive provides a prime location in the region. The development’s overall design also keeps users connected to nature by maintaining the Little Blue River that flows through the area, as well as a connection to the trail along Rock Island Rail Corridor.
Paragon Star LLC
2020 (Phase I)
United Vaccines, a manufacturer of veterinary biologics, had outgrown their space and needed to expand at a new site. GBA explored various site layouts with the company so it could combine offices with a manufacturing plant, with room for further expansion later if needed.
GBA then developed a project plan, a preliminary budget and estimates for the relocation costs. GBA also provided detailed design including site development, core and shell, and tenant finish, utilizing precast building components to give the client an attractive solution that was faster and would require less maintenance over time.
United Vaccines’ new offices are housed within a two-story building that is attached to its 50,000-square foot manufacturing space, which includes Biosafety Level 2 and 3 laboratories, warehouse space, and shipping and receiving docks.
For GBA, one particularly rewarding aspect of the project was working with United Vaccines to create a new building that met very technical and specific manufacturing needs but also created an aesthetically pleasing space for the office interior and exterior.
Although the project consisted of two distinct spaces, some of the materials used on the exterior of the office building (glass, brick and metal) were continued to the production portion of the building, to visually tie the two areas together.
A staff member at United Vaccines who enjoyed interior design also served as an important point person for GBA’s architects in choosing the finishes, which ranged from more typical items such as chair fabrics and carpeting to the more unusual, including:
- A large screen in one conference room “flies” in the center of a wall-sized whiteboard. United Vaccine staff wanted a screen and a whiteboard in the room, but only one wall was available for both.
- GBA worked with a graphics designer to create a wall with phrases that United Vaccines staff compiled, adding a touch of inspiration to the space.
- Manufacturing (BSL-2 and BSL-3)
- USP water
- High quality steam
- Clean, dry, compressed air
- Liquid nitrogen
- Equipment URS, specification and bid packages
- BSL safety cabinets
Considerations for Live Virus
- BSL-2 & BSL-3 Process Labs
- Kill Tank
United Vaccines, Inc.
50,000 square feet
Kansas City, Missouri
GF Properties Group, the owners of the Federal Aviation Administration/Central Regional Division offices in downtown Kansas City, MO, called on GBA for help in designing a parking garage for FAA employees. The FAA had requested an adjacent parking garage to make employees’ days a little easier.
Located at the intersection of Cherry and Tenth Streets, the garage was one of the first new structures within Kansas City’s East Village Development, a newer mixed-use neighborhood in the northeast section of the downtown loop. It was going to help set the tone for the neighborhood, so the garage not only needed to be functional, it had to be attractive, too.
First, the function: The parking garage accommodates approximately 340 cars. GBA’s designers utilized a single-helix design, which tends to be easy for users to understand and offers more flat (as opposed to sloped) parking and better visibility, for safety.
Second, the design: It can be challenging to create an attractive parking garage. The structure is the length of a city block and needed to be scaled so it didn’t look out of place or overwhelm the surrounding area. GBA architects found a happy medium by combining walkable scale and downtown scale in the design.
Other design elements:
- Decorative architectural precast concrete elements
- Decorative aluminum perforated panels to serve as screens
- Landscape features to provide amenities for pedestrians at the street level
GBA’s team also introduced design ideas to help bring the overall cost of the structure down significantly. For example, the facility has passive ventilation (no HVAC) but was designed with extensive natural ventilation so its users can be comfortable for the short time they are in the garage. GBA also combined cast- in-place and precast elements, to capitalize on the virtues of both and create an economical building.
GF Properties Goup, LLC
100,396 square feet
340 parking spaces
GBA was selected to provide designs for Woodend 1 Industrial Building with contractor MW Builders. The team completed construction in February 2014, with tenant improvements completed within a few months of full occupancy. Members of the GBA team provided architecture services for this design-build project.
The project sits on a 40-acre park with two building shells that include flex space for distribution, warehouse and manufacturing space in addition to office space. The Class A industrial warehouse in Edwardsville, Kansas, is near Kansas City’s major interstates.
- Cross-dock design
- Drive-in loading
- High-bay storage
- 32-foot clear height
- Conventional steel roof system
- Tilt-up concrete construction
Van Trust Real Estate, LLC
GBA provided a fast-track approach for the design and construction of Johnson Control’s new seat manufacturing plant. In order to have the facility up and running quickly for the client, the entire project was designed and built within nine months. The facility is located on a 25.5-acre site in Horizons Industrial Park and the building received LEED Silver certification.
The state-of-the-art facility manufactures seats for the Chevrolet Malibu produced at the General Motors Fairfax Assembly Plant in Kansas City, Kansas, as well as for the Ford F-150 produced at Ford Motor Company’s Assembly Plant in Claycomo, Missouri.
- 16,000-SF office and support space
- 154,000-SF manufacturing space
- 28-dock loading area
Sustainable Design Elements:
- Structural load-bearing pre-cast sandwich wall building envelope system
- White TPO roof membrane
- Use of regional materials
- FSC certified lumber
- Low VOC paints and finishes
- Job site recycling program initiated throughout design and construction
Johnson Controls, Inc.