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Wilder Bluff

Posted on Posted in Project

Shawnee, Kansas

In alignment with the City’s priorities to provide quality recreational opportunities and support an active community, Wilder Bluff, a 40-acre park near 55th Street and Belmont Drive, was planned as a capital improvement project

Funded by the Parks, Pipes and Pavement Sales Tax, the project began in 2019 and was completed in 2020.

It was named for the nearby Wilder Township by the Monticello Historical Society. Public engagement included open house meetings and working closely with nearby Riverview Elementary students during the conceptual design phase.

As part of the Confluence team, GBA performed a site investigation, civil engineering design, environmental and land surveying services.

Project Size:


Project Cost:

$4 million

Completion Date:


Schier Products

Posted on Posted in Project

Shawnee, Kansas

GBA partnered with Schier Products to evaluate sites and develop a building that would fit the firm’s needs and budget. GBA’s assistance included continuous cost-estimating to ensure the project remained on budget.

It was essential to Schier (a manufacturer of grease interceptors for commercial kitchens) to incorporate its friendly company culture into the facility design. The company breakroom showcases this effort. Glass overhead doors line the room and open to a wide, wrap-around covered porch, creating an inviting indoor/outdoor gathering space.

The client also wanted a durable building with a simple, industrial aesthetic. GBA incorporated design elements to realize this vision and also took into consideration the company’s future needs: a series of large knockout panels in the expansion wall were designed to open the existing building up to future expansion.

Project Elements
  • GBA provided site selection assistance and architecture, interior design and construction administration service
  • 52,500-SF tilt-up concrete building (7,830-SF of office with the remaining space serving production and warehouse functions)
  • Building designed to expand to 138,000-SF
  • Double height in the open office capitalizes on the clerestories to bring in natural light
  • Durable, low maintenance materials

Schier Products



Project Size:

52,500 SF (8,000-SF of office
and 44,500-SF of warehouse/
production space, two story)

Completion Date:


Turner Diagonal

Posted on Posted in Project

According to the APWA, “it has been estimated that 85 percent of the US population lives within a 2-day drive from Interstate 70 (I-70) at Turner Diagonal Parkway, where 65,000 vehicles travel on a daily basis.”

When it was determined that “the existing turner Diagonal Interchange, originally designed to accommodate tolling, had become obsolete and no longer met the needs of the commuters it served, the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, KS, (UG) partnered with the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT), Kansas Transportation Authority (KTA) and NorthPoint Development to identify solutions that would address infrastructure and transportation needs consistent with the new vision for the Turner Diagonal corridor.”

Representing KTA, KDOT, GBA performed the daily inspection and materials testing as boots on the ground inspecting, testing, and documenting the contractors work against the plans, specifications and contract documents. GBA also worked to keep the contractor’s work in compliance in order to assure the owners of a quality product that will last.

The UG, KDOT, KTA and NorthPoint Development, and with the guidance of GBA, developed the solution that is the final result of the project; an interchange that “further solidifies Kansas City as a premier destination for product distribution providers.”

Project Size:

Design/Construction: $28 million (+)
Inspection/Materials Testing: $800K

Completion Date:

September 8, 2020

21st Street Rehabilitation

Posted on Posted in Project

Topeka, Kansas

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

Project Size

$17,511 (design)
$683,000 (construction)

Completion Date


Aerial view of Hobby Hill plans

Hobby Hill Park Improvements

Posted on Posted in Project

Gladstone, Missouri

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.

Design elements:


Land3 Studio

Project Size

39.3 acres

Completion Date


GBA teammate in front lawn of home

Brush Creek Neighborhood Rehabilitation and I/I Reduction Project

Posted on Posted in Project

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

Project Size

405,350 feet of sewer

Completion Date


Route N roadway

Route N Improvements

Posted on Posted in Project

Cottleville, Missouri

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

Project Size

2.5 miles

Completion Date


Exterior of 28th Street Pump Station

28th Street Stormwater Pumping Station

Posted on Posted in Project

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

Project Size


Completion Date

2015 (construction)
2016 (post-construction)


ACEC Nebraska 2015 Merit Award
Iowa APWA Project of the Year ($5M-$25M)

Paragon Star Development

Posted on Posted in Project

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

Project Size


Completion Date

2020 (Phase I)

United Vaccines New Facility

Posted on Posted in Project

Verona, Wisconsin

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.

Project Elements

  • Manufacturing (BSL-2 and BSL-3)
  • Laboratories
  • Office
  • Warehouse

Process Design

  • USP water
  • High quality steam
  • Clean, dry, compressed air
  • Liquid nitrogen

Equipment Procurement

  • Equipment URS, specification and bid packages
  • Lyophilizer
  • Autoclave
  • BSL safety cabinets

Considerations for Live Virus

  • BSL-2 & BSL-3 Process Labs
  • Kill Tank
  • HVAC



United Vaccines, Inc.


50,000 square feet