Tag Archives: metro light rail

Ray Headshot

Artigue Agency Expands Growing Sports Practice

Local marketing communications firm, The Artigue Agency has announced the addition of several new clients to its growing sports practice.  Led by sports marketing veteran Ray Artigue, the firm’s new clients include Junior Golf Association of Arizona (JGAA), Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, former Phoenix Suns star and NBA veteran Eddie Johnson, Patriot All-America at Wigwam Arizona and QR Gameplan.

“The growth of the agency represents the need for additional staff and expanded offices and I’m flattered by the market’s demand for our professional services,” said agency principal Ray Artigue.  “As we evolve and expand our sports offering, our greatest marketplace differentiator remains our people.  Our team comes from a variety of backgrounds, bringing diverse skills and extraordinary expertise in their respective specialty areas, ensuring that we’ll continue to deliver successful PR and marketing programs.”

The Artigue Agency recently moved to a larger office in Biltmore-area of Phoenix to be closer to new and existing clients and to accommodate its growing team.  The firm has also added two new two senior account executives, Casaundra Donahoe and Ian La Cava.

Donahoe brings nine years of experience in brand strategy, creative development, media relations and communications planning. Prior to joining The Artigue Agency, Donahoe worked for Park & Co. where she served as strategic counsel for brands like Goodwill, Girl Scouts, Expect More Arizona, METRO Light Rail, Coca-Cola and many others.

La Cava has five years of experience developing and executing public outreach campaigns and strategic initiatives on behalf of several clients in the sports industry. Prior to joining The Artigue Agency, La Cava worked for Niner Sports Marketing where he managed talent procurement, endorsement deals and social media for marquee athletes.

The Artigue Agency works with emerging and established companies in several markets with extensive experience in the sports, entertainment and lifestyle, healthcare, financial, legal and environmental industries.  Current clients include Arizona Broadcasters Association, Arizona Public Service (APS), Arizona Biltmore Golf Club, Abrazo Health Care, Cardon Global, Gallagher & Kennedy, BMO Private Bank, JDM Partners, Scottsdale Tourism Development Council, Wigwam Golf Club and Waste Management, among others.

Light Rail Station On Washington, Phoenix, AZ

Businesses Helped During Light-Rail Expansion

As the Northwest light-rail expands into Glendale, local business owners try to work out the project’s kinks with city officials.

When talk first started of the expansion, many business owners were a bit skeptical of their success during the process. But after talking with each other and receiving much needed reassurance from the city of Phoenix, businesses can breathe a bit easier.

According to the City of Phoenix, these public transit improvements have allowed Phoenix natives to become more comfortable with public transportation. In the past year, there have been 37.4 million bus passenger boardings along with 7.8 million boardings on the light-rail.

So what does this mean for local businesses?

In preparation for the original 20-mile rail system, the city council approved $2 million to be provided for business assistance for those affected by the construction of the light-rail. According to the city of Phoenix, the program successfully joined existing city programs and resources to provide immediate support for the businesses.

“As with the original project, the construction of Metro Light Rail can be disruptive to the businesses, neighborhoods and community organizations along the line,” Sam Richard, business development director and member of the Encanto village planning committee says, “However, despite those challenges the city along with the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce and Local First Arizona are working to connect business owners to resources during the construction phase.”

The main concern of the businesses is the access customers will be able to have. Ruth Anderson, manager at WineBurger, says that the businesses with only one access point are going to be the businesses that have the most trouble. But once construction is gone there will be a better overall business flow.

To assist the approximate 300 businesses along the Northwest expansion, Council staff is recommending $500,000 to be spent over the next four fiscal years for the project. The City of Phoenix says that a portion of that budget will be held as contingency funds to allow responses to issues during construction.

Although the rail system is in motion now, in June 2009, the Northwest expansion was delayed due to significantly reduced sales tax revenues. During their time off, Metro researched ways to get construction underway sooner and with a $200 million plan, the expansion was approved by city council on June 20, 2012.

Ana Berzan, owner of De La Ana European Delicatessen in Phoenix, says, “In the long run it will probably bring more traffic to the business. For right now, they just started working and they do provide access (to the business), but I’m not sure what is going to happen.”

The new line will add three stations ending at Dunlap Avenue, which is 3.2 miles longer off of the 19th/Montebello Avenue light-rail stop and is expected to open in the beginning of 2016.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, second from left, joined city leaders March 14 at the American Animal Hospital Association’s annual conference to celebrate the millionth delegate to visit the Phoenix Convention Center since its $650 million expansion in January 2009. The millionth delegate, veterinarian Monique Weldon of Aurora, Colo., accepted a donation in her honor to the Rescue Operation for the Animals of the Reservation (ROAR). Pictured from left are Phoenix Convention Center Director Debbie Cotton, Mayor Stanton, AHAA President Mark Russak, ROAR spokeswoman Helen Oliff, Greater Phoenix CVB President Steve Moore, Weldon, and Phoenix City Manager David Cavazos.

Convention Center welcomes millionth delegate

A huge milestone at the Phoenix Convention Center arrived last week in the form of a petite veterinarian from Colorado.

Dr. Monique Weldon, owner of Loving Family Animal Hospital in Aurora, Colo., was the one millionth delegate to visit the Phoenix Convention Center since it emerged four years ago from a $600 million expansion.

Weldon, a veterinary professional in town for the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) annual conference, was honored by Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and City Manager David Cavazos in the convention center’s palatial North Ballroom during the AAHA’s May 14 opening general session. Phoenix Convention Center Director Debbie Cotton and Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau President Steve Moore also participated in the celebration.

“One million delegates is a testament to the drawing power of our city, our airport, our remade downtown, and this beautiful convention center,” Mayor Stanton said.

Cavazos pointed out that one million convention delegates visiting downtown Phoenix equates to nearly $1.5 billion in estimated spending for Phoenix’s economy.

The Phoenix Convention Center welcomed its first convention attendees in January 2009. With a glass-and-stone design inspired by the turquoise waters and red rock of the Grand Canyon, the convention center boasts nearly 900,000 square feet of exhibition and meeting space.

Mayor Stanton characterized the new convention center as a game changer, and called attention to several other developments that either dove-tailed with the facility’s construction or followed in its wake:

* METRO Light Rail began operation with 20 miles of line and 32 stations
* More than 60 new restaurants have opened downtown
* Every major hotel in downtown Phoenix is either completely new or has undergone multimillion-dollar renovations.
* CityScape was built, adding 2 blocks of new dining and entertainment options within a short stroll of the convention center’s doors.

On a more whimsical note, in the four years since expansion was completed, the convention center’s catering staff has served nearly 400,000 chicken breasts and 68,000 gallons of Starbucks coffee.

In addition to honoring Dr. Weldon with an array of gifts that included a return visit to Phoenix, representatives from the Greater Phoenix Convention & Visitors Bureau and three downtown hotels—the Hyatt Regency Phoenix, Renaissance Phoenix Downtown and Sheraton Phoenix Downtown—donated $1,000 to the Phoenix branch of AAHA’s charity of choice, the Rescue Operation for the Animals of the Reservation (ROAR).

The AAHA matched that donation to ROAR, and another $2,500 was given to the group’s cause by BlogPaws, a collection of bloggers who write about pet-care information.

ROAR is a nonprofit that provides food, shelter and medical care to dogs and cats rescued from American Indian reservations. According to the organization’s website, extreme poverty and limited access to medical care lead to tens of thousands of animals being orphaned on Indian reservations each year; there are at least 1,500 stray dogs and cats roaming the Navajo Nation alone.

On hand Thursday to help ROAR accept the donations was Lucy, a German Shepherd mix who was found in a roadside cardboard box in a New Mexico pueblo. Lucy now lives in a mountainside home in South Phoenix, where she enjoys daily walks and swims in a backyard pool.

LightRailQuestion

Groundbreaking for light rail extension

Ground will be broken Saturday on a project to extend metro Phoenix’s light rail system by three miles.

The new section of line will be built on 19th Avenue in Phoenix from Montebello Avenue northward to Dunlap Avenue.

Construction will begin Monday.

The $300 million project is slated to be completed in late 2015 or early 2016.

The first 20-miles of light rail opened in December 2008.

Six light rail extensions are under way that will create a 57-mile system by 2032.

PHX skytrain - AZRE Magazine May/June 2012

All Aboard The PHX Sky Train

PHX Sky Train Stage 1 at Sky Harbor is a moving example of Hensel Phelps’ grand presence and reputation in Arizona

Ask Allan Bliesmer what’s most special about the $644M PHX Sky Train project, and his answer isn’t that surprising.

“The team effort toward a common goal,” responds Bliesmer, operations manager for Hensel Phelps Construction Co., general contractor for the Stage 1 fixed facilities of the massive project at Sky Harbor International Airport. “The city, designer, and Hensel Phelps addressed each challenge with a solutions-orientated approach.

“The people involved in the project refrained from developing or maintaining personal agendas, and worked together, utilizing each member’s expertise, to develop the best design and construction solutions for the project.”

Once Hensel Phelps was selected as construction manager for the first phase of the train’s stations and elevated guide-way tracks, preliminary work began and lasted 20 months — from June 2008 to February 2010. (Bombardier Transportation was chosen as the system provider).

Stage 1 — a 1.7-mile stretch — will transport airport visitors and employees between METRO light rail, east economy parking and Terminal 4, which serves 80% of Sky Harbor’s passengers. Stage 1 is scheduled for completion in 2Q 2012.

What was it about the company that helped Hensel Phelps land such a historic project? Prior to the start of the PHX Sky Train project, Bliesmer says, Hensel Phelps had just completed the automated train project at the Dallas-Ft. Worth International Airport. The Dallas-Ft. Worth system was installed throughout the entire airport and spanned a total of 5 miles in length with 8 stations.

In addition, Hensel Phelps has completed billions of dollars of aviation work around the country including automated train systems, terminals, hangars, administration facilities, rental car facilities, air traffic control towers and parking structures at a number of airports.

But one feature that makes PHX Sky Train different from other projects is a 350- foot bridge that carries the train above an active taxiway that is large enough for a 747 to pass through. An article in a national construction magazine boasted that the project “features many innovative design elements,” including the bridge.

“The Taxiway R crossing is a unique item not generally featured at other airports around the world,” Bliesmer says. “In order to maintain full use of the taxiway, the design had to accommodate a ‘bridge’ that would not encumber the use of the largest aircraft planned at the airport.

“To satisfy this, a 350-foot cast in-place concrete ‘bridge,’ at an elevation of 80 feet above grade, was incorporated to provide the necessary clearance. Another innovative approach was the use of precast tub girders in lieu of cast in-place concrete structural elements for a majority of the guideway structure,” Bliesmer adds. “The use of precast allowed the construction team to minimize the real estate needed on the ground to install shoring required for a traditional cast in-place concrete approach, resulting in minimization of issues associated with public access, airport operations and safety.”

The automated train was a necessity. Sky Harbor serves 42M passengers a year, and the number is projected to rise to 40M to 50M in 2013. The goal is to remove about 20,000 cars and trucks — up to 20% of the traffic circling Sky Harbor — from the airport area. The project is also a boon to the local economy. Stage 1 has created an estimated 6,000 jobs.

What are some of the challenges Hensel Phelps faced?

“The primary challenge with the integration of such a large construction project into an active airport,” Bliesmer explains, “is completing the work without causing interruption to the airport and airline operations, as well as maintaining safe access by public and airport employees.”

In order to accomplish public safety and minimize any impact to the airport operations and airline operations, much of the work activity is conducted during night-time hours when flight activity and public access at the airport is at a minimum, Bliesmer adds.

Stage 2, which will continue through the airport to the rental car center, was scheduled for completion in 2020. But last June, the Phoenix City Council voted to move up completion of a .6-mile section to connect Terminal 4 with Terminal 3, along with a walkway for passengers to access Terminal 2, to early 2015. Final cost of the project: $1.5B.

“The state-of-the-art system installed at Sky Harbor is the latest and greatest in the industry,” Bliesmer says proudly. “Having the opportunity to work with the City of Phoenix and the aviation team at Sky Harbor has furthered Hensel Phelps’ experience and recognition throughout the industry.”

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PHX SKY TRAIN BY THE NUMBERS

  • 14M: Pounds of precast concrete
  • 12M: Pounds of structural steel
  • 5,000: Drawings issued for construction
  • 340: Subcontracts issued
  • 40: Miles of wiring (power cabling)

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For more information on PHX Sky Train, visit Sky Harbors’ website at skyharbor.com/about/automatedtrain.html.

AZRE Magazine May/June 2012

RED Awards Banner

General Contractor Of The Year 2011

Sundt Construction

It’s no surprise that Sundt just celebrated its 120th anniversary. It is one of Arizona’s most respected businesses and among the 100 largest general contractors in the U.S. The company was founded in 1890 by Norwegian ship carpenter Mauritz Martinsen Sundt and has prospered and thrived ever since. General Contractor of Year 2011: Sundt Construction

The company has gained and kept the respect of its clientele because of the quality and service it provides. Sundt employees take pride in their work, because they not only work for Sundt, they own it. The company is 100% employee owned.

The high-caliber work Sundt performs can be seen through  many projects in Arizona, around the U.S. and abroad. Sundt has completed projects for the U.S. military, Arizona State University, the University of Arizona, the Metro Light Rail, Sea World and condominiums in Saudi Arabia, to name a few.

Sundt prides itself not only on the relationships it develops with its customers, but also its relationship with the community. Sundt’s community service includes work with Habit for Humanity and participating in various walks for different organizations.

Through Sundt’s many years in the business, it has created a core philosophy: we are only as good as our people. This motto has helped it achieve the respect of the community, clients, and fellow contractors.

www.sundt.com

Bonnie Richardson - Green Advocate - AZ Business Magazine Jul/Aug 2010

BIG Green Awards: Green Advocate

Twelve categories, hundreds of nominations — but only one will take home the green. It’s the first annual Southwest Build-it-Green Awards, where BIG teamed up with the USGBC to bring you the leanest sustainable leaders and projects in Arizona.

Recipient: Bonnie Richardson, LEED AP, Architect & Principal Planner· City of Tempe

A passion for sustainable design and an enthusiasm for sharing her knowledge with others are not the only attributes Bonnie Richardson brings to the table.

After graduating from Arizona State University’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design in 1983, Richardson established her own architectural firm and became a visiting professor of architecture at her alma mater. Since then, Richardson has continued to share her knowledge of design, not only with the ASU community, but also with the Phoenix-metro area.

As an architect and principal planner for Tempe’s transportation department, Richardson has put her mark on many of the city’s green building endeavors, including Phoenix’s METRO light rail system and the Tempe Transportation Center.

Richardson is a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) professional, and an advocate for environmentally friendly development. She is committed to creating facilities and buildings that area residents will find aesthetically pleasing, and prove to be a valuable investment of their tax dollars.

She is a member of the American Institute of Architects, Valley Forward and the Arizona Technology Council, and has served with the U.S. Green Building Council’s Arizona Chapter.

Her commitment to the future of Tempe and Arizona is manifested in her desire to encourage and promote sustainable designing and building in her community.

www.tempe.gov


Finalist: Lori Singleton, Manager, Sustainability Initiatives & Technologies
SRP
www.srpnet.com

Although Lori Singleton is Salt River Project’s manager of sustainability initiatives and technology, she also uses her knowledge of environmentally friendly and sustainable practices to help others in her private life.  Singleton’s passion for sustainability has been demonstrated through her association with the Arizona chapter of the Audubon Society and Valley Forward.

Both Singleton’s personal and professional lives are dedicated to improving the quality of life in Arizona, advocating for sustainable practices and bringing attention to new, more efficient conservation techniques.  Her personal and professional philosophy — “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” — exemplifies her enthusiasm for sustainability.

Singleton had a regular column in The Arizona Republic, which she used to educate readers on daily ways to help preserve the environment.  She also aided the Audubon Society in its early stages by leading Audubon Arizona’s Business Advisory Committee.  Her involvement with Audubon gave the society the resources to spread its Healthy Planet/Healthy Home message to its 10,000 statewide members.


Finalist: Mara DeFilippis, Founder & CEO
Phoenix Green Chamber of Commerce
www.arizonagreenchamber.org

Striving to fill Phoenix’s need for green information and resources, Mara DeFilippis established the Phoenix Green Chamber of Commerce in 2008.

DeFilippis once asked, “If we were to have a lifespan of 500 years, how would we be living differently?”  This sentiment reflects DeFilippis’ passion for environmentally responsible practices.  It also demonstrates the Green Chamber’s mission to promote businesses committed to environmental and social responsibility.

The Green Chamber serves more than 140 businesses, holds monthly educational forums and distributes a monthly newsletter, which reaches more than 5,500 Phoenix businesses, agencies and people.  It is also compiling an “Eco-Standards” handbook, estimated for a mid-2010 release, which features a tiered system to rate members’ sustainable business practices.  These ratings will be visible online through the Green Chamber’s directory.

DeFilippis and the Green Chamber strive to provide clear education on which green ideas and businesses are most effective for the environment and the bottom line.

Arizona Business Magazine Jul/Aug 2010

Valley Metro Light Rail

Awarding Sustainable Excellence

On Saturday, September 12th Valley Forward held its 29th Annual Environmental Excellence Awards Gala. With Fox 10 News’ Troy Hayden as master of ceremonies for the event, there was never a dull moment.

Title sponsor SRP and Diane Brossart, president of Valley Forward, put together another spectacular celebration of sustainability. More than 150 nominations came in for this year’s awards — more than any previous year — showing that despite difficult economic times, the public’s commitment to sustainability has not wavered.

METRO Light Rail was the 2009 President’s Award (Best of Show) recipient, further highlighting the achievements of the newest addition to the Valley’s transportation system. METRO Light Rail was also honored with a first-place Crescordia Award in the Livable Communities, Multi-modal Transportation & Connectivity category.

Crescordia is a Greek term that means “to grow in harmony,” and that’s the overall message that came across during this year’s awards. Each acceptance speech reiterated the importance of responsible economic growth, and keeping the environment in mind for a brighter future for our state.

Check out the full list of winners here.

It was a great experience to see all of the amazing projects, and the progress Arizona has made toward a more sustainable future. An added bonus was being able to mingle with a crowd of esteemed professionals, as well as community and business leaders.

Along with the award winners, Brossart announced AZ Big Media / Arizona Business Magazine’s blog partnership with Valley Forward. She will be a guest blogger on the AZ Green Scene once a month, so check back soon as we’ll have some great posts coming our way.

www.valleyforward.org

Photo Credit: www.valleymetro.org