Thursday, May 31, 2012

Conway Treatment Plant Groundbreaking

Conway Corporation has broken ground on the Tupelo Bayou Wastewater Treatment Plant, a new facility on Lollie Bottoms Road in Conway, Arkansas. The groundbreaking for the treatment plant and related system improvements, including line work and pumping station, was May 25.

"Today we are here to commemorate the construction of a 16 million gallon per day treatment facility that I believe will be an integral part of our infrastructure for decades to come," said Conway Corporation Chief Executive Officer Richard Arnold. "Its design is such that it can be doubled in size when our growth warrants, it employs proven technology, and for the first time in Conway we have air filtration [odor control] at key points in our processes."

The Tupelo Bayou Wastewater Treatment Plant will replace one of the city's treatment plants and will feature advanced treatment technology that includes an activated sludge treatment system with ultraviolet disinfection—which eliminates the use of chlorine and sulfur dioxide gas—and anaerobic sludge digestion with gas recovery, which will be reused in the digesters’ heating cycle. Future use of digester gas for power regeneration may also be possible as the treatment plant is further expanded.

"A strong city is like a well-built building; it must start with a firm foundation. The foundation for a city is its infrastructure," said Jack Bell, assistant to the mayor of Conway. "This new plant is going to go a long way in making the foundation for the city of Conway a lot stronger."

The plant will have the capacity to process 32 million gallons a day (MGD). The initial phase will construct two parallel 8 MGD liquid trains for a total capacity of 16 MGD. Additional capacity increases can be constructed in 8 MGD increments, with a 24 MGD capacity anticipated by 2030.

Garver provided the professional engineering services for the wastewater system improvements from planning and design through the ongoing construction and future startup phases.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

U.S. Navy Visits Garver

United States Navy Rear Admiral Kenneth Floyd visited Garver's headquarters in North Little Rock, Arkansas on May 24. Rear Admiral Floyd is on an outreach campaign to share with land-locked states the U.S. Navy's ongoing mission to serve and protect on, over, and under the sea.

Garver was honored to welcome Rear Admiral Floyd. Garver President and CEO Brock Johnson led Rear Admiral Floyd on a tour of our facilities and introduced him to Garver's services. Afterward, Rear Admiral Floyd met with a group of engineers to talk about the U.S. Navy, which he referred to as the United States' "Away Team."

"You can be confident that we are out there," Rear Admiral Floyd said.
"[U.S. Navy sailors] operate as a team, they're disciplined, and they're committed to each other and to accomplishing their mission. They're there to stand up for and defend this country as required."

Rear Admiral Floyd talked about the U.S. Navy's many missions and capabilities, from providing disaster relief efforts to pursuing energy innovations that benefit war fighting to keeping the seas free for more than 200 years. And as unpredictable and diverse challenges rise up to face the U.S. Navy, Rear Admiral Floyd said they will continue to be on the seas doing their job.

Rear Admiral Floyd is the acting director for the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations Warfare Integration. He participated in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Enduring Freedom. His awards include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medals, Air Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal and various campaign, unit, and service medals.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Big Dam Bridge Construction Milestone

The last section of concrete has been poured on the Big Dam Bridge's southwest approach. Representatives from Pulaski County, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobley Contractors, and Garver celebrated the construction milestone last week.

The southwest approach to the Big Dam Bridge over the Arkansas River is the second phase of a pedestrian and bicycle bridge concept that began in 2002. The bridge, completed in 2006, is constructed above the Murray Lock and Dam, and the Society of American Travel Writers just named it one of the top 10 bridges to visit in the United States.

The southwest approach provides bicyclists a route to connect with the Two Rivers Bridge without attempting a tight 180-degree turn, and pedestrians will get a great view of the lock and dam from an upstream vantage point. Pulaski County Public Works Director Sherman Smith and Road and Bridge Director Barbara Richard (pictured above) participated in the final pour by pulling the handle to release the concrete and form the final barrier wall. Others in attendance included the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-Little Rock District Commander Colonel Glen Masset and Dam Safety Program Manager Bob Oberle. Even Hot Dog Mike stopped by as part of the festivities.

The southwest approach should be complete by early fall. The project uses nearly 1,300 cubic yards of concrete and brings the bridge's total length to approximately 5,270 feet. The new leg of the bridge features a 325-foot curved steel plate girder unit, MSE approach ramp, cofferdam construction, and elevated observation platform. In addition, three architectural towers are being constructed on top of the observation platforms.
The southwest approach (top leg) to the Big Dam Bridge

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Bike to Work Week Photos

Bike to Work Day was a great success as Garver employees rode in convoys and hosted a rest area with drinks and snacks at our headquarters for central Arkansas cyclists. Several other Garver offices also participated in their cities, including employees in Norman, Oklahoma and Fayetteville, Arkansas. Additional pictures are available on our Facebook page.

Beverly, Brent, and Bert met at the Two Rivers Bridge and rode their bikes to work.

A group of cyclists stop at Garver's headquarters  before continuing on their way.

Lawren hosts a bike maintenance workshop before  Bike to Work Week.

Diane (front row, second from right) rides with two convoys that joined together to pedal in North Little Rock.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Warrior Dash

There are warriors among us.

There is no other name for people like Beverly Green, Derrick Hendrix, Julio Orbegoso, and Sam Feezor, who faced great challenges and reigned victorious after defeating the Assassins Escape, Great Warrior Wall, Chaotic Crossover, Warrior Roast, and Muddy Mayhem.

For the first time in Arkansas, the Warrior Dash brought 12 obstacles to a 3.41-mile course. An estimated 6,000 participants came to Amity last Saturday to run in the extreme obstacle course.

"Running the Warrior Dash tested my strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie," Beverly said, who is Garver's finance controller. "Hurdling over barricades, crawling through mud and under barbed wire, leaping over fire, and scaling cargo nets was exhilarating!"

Caked in mud by the time it was over, Beverly proudly accepted her finisher medal, not just because she'd come away triumphant, but also because the event raises support for childhood disease research and treatment.

"The biggest reward was knowing my efforts along with the other 6,000 participants would directly benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital," Beverly said.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

APWA Projects of the Year

The American Public Works Association Oklahoma Chapter recognized two Garver projects with Project of the Year Awards. The awards were presented at the annual Spring Technical Conference in Tulsa, hosted by APWA Oklahoma and the Oklahoma Water Environmental Association.

Environment Category

After Garver analyzed 17 alternatives, Claremore approved a plan to incorporate a new wastewater treatment process at its existing site. This conversion has increased the future treatment capacity within the facility's footprint and integrated advanced technologies to produce higher quality effluent.

Garver's design included upgrades to every single process at the plant, converting it from a fixed-film trickling filter system to an advanced activated sludge treatment process with biological nutrient removal (BNR) capabilities.

Garver partnered with the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality to obtain targeted design variances. These variances translated into reduced capital expenditures by retrofitting existing concrete structures for new treatment processes.

Together, the new treatment process is helping the Claremore plant produce effluent well below permit levels for biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), total suspended solids (TSS) and ammonia (NH3).

Transportation Category
More than 65,000 vehicles use U.S. 169 every day, and it serves as a major connector between Tulsa and Owasso as well as several other communities north of Tulsa. The Oklahoma Department of Transportation's goal was to increase capacity on the four-lane divided highway by adding an additional lane in each direction and rehabilitate the pavement without acquiring additional right-of-way or impacting existing utilities. This was achieved by converting the grass median into an additional lane in each direction with a concrete median barrier dividing the traffic.

Garver provided fast-track design to widen and resurface approximately 5 miles of urban freeway on U.S. 169, completing the design of two sets of construction plans in six weeks. The construction plans to widen this major Tulsa freeway included storm sewer design, widening and replacing the bridge over Pine Street, roadway geometrics, construction sequencing, and maintenance of traffic.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Work-Life Balance Award

The Arkansas Governor's Work-Life Initiative has recognized Garver for establishing and providing resources that encourage employees to balance work, family, and health.

Garver received a Spotlight Award for offering unique programs that address the needs of employees and their families. In addition to the health and wellness benefits Garver provides, our company has created a pro-bicycling atmosphere within the business culture.

"This award validates our efforts to provide a healthy work-life balance for our employees," said Tatiana Herrington, director of human resources. "Healthy living and family time are important to our company's vision, and we've diligently worked to offer quality benefits and programs."

Accepting the award included Senior Vice President Chad Clinehens, Controller Beverly Green, Director of Human Resources Tatiana Herrington, Corporate Editor Jon Hetzel, and Senior Vice President Bert Parker.

Garver's employees support and motivate each other to achieve a healthy lifestyle at work and at home. This atmosphere has created a pro-bicycling environment. Integrating bicycling into the business culture has included participating in National Bike to Work Week activities: from May 14-18, several Garver employees are organizing bike maintenance services and leading convoys to company headquarters in North Little Rock. Other activities include posting rides and races on the corporate blog and providing loaner bikes, secure bicycle parking and showers to encourage employees to fit rides into their daily routines.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Ditch the Keys: Bike to Work Week Activities

Garver is again involved in Bike to Work Week activities and encouraging commuters to ditch their car keys May 14-18. Our employees are involved in a number of ways this year, which includes leading multiple rides to our office in North Little Rock and providing coffee and snacks for other bikers who are pedaling through the Northshore Business Park.

Below is a list of organized events near Garver offices. Specific meeting times, locations, and routes are available by clicking on the highlighted links. And if you know of any other events in a Garver city, let me know and I'll add it to our list. Happy biking!

Little Rock/North Little Rock, Arkansas
To kickoff Bike to Work Week, Lawren Wilcox is organizing bike maintenance services for Garver employees. This Friday (May 11) from 11:30-12:30, Lawren and others will provide free basic services such as tires inflation, chain lubrication, shifter and brake adjustment, and bike fit. If you need a tune-up to prepare for Bike to Work Week and the cycling season, want to learn a little about bike maintenance, or need help with your kids' bikes, please join us at the recreational storage in Building Two.

Bike to Work Day (Friday, May 18). Arkansas Outside has posted biking routes from Little Rock, North Little Rock, Maumelle, Sherwood, and Conway. Several Garver employees are leading convoys to our headquarters in North Little Rock: Lawren Wilcox is leading a group from West Little Rock and will meet up with a Bert Parker group coming from the River Mountain Road boat ramp; Diane Barton is taking a group from North Little Rock Park Hill. Both Lawren and Diane will be leading return trips later in the day.

Arkansas Outside has also provided information about bike storage, shower locations, bike store and rental discounts, and sponsor locations with free snacks. Additional information is available on the Facebook page Ditch the Keys.

Ride of Silence (Wednesday, May 16). A memorial ride to remember bicyclists killed or injured in traffic crashes.

A great source for Central Arkansas bicycling news, commentary, tips, and links is the blog JBar Cycling.

Fayetteville, Arkansas
Kick-Off Proclamation and Urban Ride (Friday, May 11). Mayor Lioneld Jordan will read the Bike to Work Week Proclamation, and then an urban bicycle ride will begin.

Bicycle Commuter Challenge (May 13-19) The workplace with the highest percentage of bicycle commuters on any single day has the chance to win great prizes. Register your commute and report your daily rides to enter.

Tulsa, Oklahoma
Free Workshop Series (May 14 and 18). The Indian Nations Council of Governments has organized a number of training workshops for bicyclists. Remaining events include "Bike Racks Around Town," which explains where nearly 100 bicycle racks will be installed in Tulsa,  and "Bike to Work Day Celebration."

Green Traveler is a website that offers bike routes in Tulsa and information on a bike commuter challenge.

Norman, Oklahoma
Bike to Work Central Oklahoma (May 18). The Association of Central Oklahoma Governments is helping coordinate Bike to Work Day rides for for numerous communities, including a route in Norman. Additional information is available on the Bike to Work Central Oklahoma Facebook page.

Frisco and Houston, Texas
If you're interested in a group ride, check into Frisco Cycling Club and Shawnee Trail Cycling Club for ride schedules and events.

Although Houston has already had its Bike to Work activities, Bike Houston is a Facebook page dedicated to making Houston a bike friendly city.

Ride of Silence (Wednesday, May 16). A memorial ride to remember bicyclists killed or injured in traffic crashes. Events are planned in Plano, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Houston.

Irving Bicycle Fest (Saturday, May 19). Planned events include group rides, kids' bicycle safety, bike repairs, and a safe route finder.

Nashville, Tennessee
Tour de Nash (Saturday, May 19). Family rides and longer tours are scheduled. The Tour de Nash will celebrate the grand opening of Nashville's new bike facility, the Music City Bikeway. This 26-mile route connects Percy Warner Park with Percy Priest Dam via Downtown on a collection of greenways and safe on-street facilities for bikes.

Bike to Work Day (Friday, May 18). Walk/Bike Nashville has a website and Facebook page with information on bicycling activities. Walk/Bike Nashville is coordinating group rides to all areas of Nashville/Greater Nashville area. For more information, contact Whit Smith at

Monday, May 7, 2012

35,640 Meals

Garver's Tulsa office recently helped package meals for children around the world.

Garver employees and their families worked with Feed My Starving Children, which is a Christian nonprofit hunger relief organization. The event readied 35,640 meals, which will feed 98 children for a year. The MannaPacks include rice, extruded soy nuggets, dehydrated vegetables, vitamins, minerals, and a vegetarian flavoring to give growing children the critical nutritional elements they need.

FMSC delivers food to children in nearly 70 countries, and the boxes are distributed to orphanages, schools, clinics, refugee camps, nutrition programs, and more.

Volunteering their time included Marcia Wilbanks, Jayme Simpson, Cindy Gran, Slaten Leach, Andrew Snyder, Jeremy Stahle, Chris Livingston, Kelly Fincannon, and friends and family.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Thank You!

Garver said thank you to a vital group of employees last week. Our offices celebrated Administrative Professionals Day and recognized more than 50 employees across our company who tirelessly work behind the scenes to serve Garver's employees and clients.

Below are several snapshots highlighting ways we thanked our employees for their hard work and dedication. The day included gifts, eating out, and fun.
After lunch on the patio at our North Little Rock, Arkansas office, Garver's president Brock Johnson thanked administrative, IT, marketing, human resources, recruitment, and finance employees for embodying the spirit of Garver: passion, dedication, and focus.
Our Norman, Oklahoma office greeted Audra Smith and Lisa Nipper with flowers in the morning to thank them for their hard work.  Audra joined Garver in 2011, and Lisa has worked with Garver for two years.
According to employees in our Frisco, Texas office, they have the world's greatest administrative professional working in their midst. Cami Keene has worked at Garver for more than five years.

As part of the celebration in Huntsville, Alabama, the office gave its administrative staff orchids and took them on a field trip to an antique hardware store. Peggy Bridgeman, pictured left, has been with Garver for three years. Liz Aaron, holding an antique above, has worked with Garver since 2010.
Thanks to all our employees in our Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas offices. We're so proud of the work you do.

And if you're interested in joining our great team of administrative professionals, take a look at our job openings.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Our Hot Springs Office is Moving

Garver's office in Hot Springs, Arkansas is moving today, May 1. Relocating our office enhances our ability to serve South Arkansas with exceptional responsiveness and professionalism. Our new office is located in the terminal at Hot Springs Municipal Airport, and the location benefits our design and surveying teams.

Please update your contact information with our new address:
525 Airport Road
Room 104
Hot Springs, AR 71913

Our phone and fax numbers remain the same.
501-760-3743 (fax)


Subscribe to our blog Follow us on Facebook Follow us on LinkedIn Follow us on LinkedIn