Orange County Branch Newsletter

Established 1953

May 2019

President's Message

Future World Vision


"ASCE has launched a bold, comprehensive project to anticipate, reimagine, and prepare for future changes – FUTURE WORLD VISION."
Click here to learn more.



Check out the latest ASCE Future World Vision websitearticle and report! Below are some highlights, and what is even more exciting is that there is much more to come! For example, the next phase of the Future World Vision will be released at the ASCE Annual Convention, which will take place on October 10-13, 2019 in Miami, Florida! Save the date!

More great news!! Gerald E. “Jerry” Buckwalter who has been leading the Future World Vision effort will officially be joining ASCE staff in a new role, Chief Operating and Strategy Officer, effective June 4. Click here to learn more about Jerry and the beginning of this new adventure for us all. “A respected and visible leader within the infrastructure sector, Jerry has the perfect blend of vision, intellect, and pragmatism, and I am really looking forward to working with him,” said ASCE Executive Director Tom Smith. I have had the pleasure of volunteering with Jerry on the Future World Vision and I am also very excited to have have him join ASCE!

2018 ASCE William H. Wisely American Civil Engineer Award Recipients

In addition, Jerry was a 2018 recipient of ASCE’s William H. Wisely American Civil Engineer Award for his dedicated service to the Society. Above is a photo of us accepting a Wisely Award from 2018 President Kristina Swallow and Tom Smith during the 2018 ASCE Convention.


Future World Vision Website





Future World Vision Article 


Future World Vision Report 

Dynamics of Trends




About the Author

Elizabeth Ruedas is a Surface Water Engineer with Michael Baker International in Orange County, CA. She is passionate about inspiring, empowering, and educating others to help us move towards a more sustainable future. She currently serves as the ASCE OC Branch President and is grateful for all of the opportunities that ASCE provides for members to give back. Elizabeth can be contacted via [email protected] or LinkedIn.

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ASCE OC Government Relations

ASCE Members Say #InfrastructureNow

"We in America do not have government by the majority. We have government by the majority who participate." - Thomas Jefferson

Growing up, I used to bike to and from school while my parents worked from 6am until 6pm every day.  Avoiding the potholes on our crumbling roads was almost like a fun daily challenge for me.  Until one day, I hit a pothole and fell down.  Instead of thinking about my scraped knees, my immediate concern was the financial burden that it would cost my parents to fix my damaged bike.  Fast forward to now, not much has changed - however, instead of the bike, my concern was how much I would need to fix my car's flat tires.  

Many of us have reasons that inspired us to study and pursue a profession in civil engineering.  Maybe it was a love for math and science, a passion for architecture and innovation, or a chance encounter that led you to this path.  Or, maybe, it was a pothole. 

On March 12-13, 2019, I was able to sit down with Members of Congress to tell my story.  During the ASCE Legislative Fly-In Event, I joined other ASCE members from all 50 states, DC, and Puerto Rico on Capitol Hill to discuss with our lawmakers the urgent need to invest in our nation’s aging infrastructure.  On the first day, the Fly-In kicked off with the Young Member Program where young engineers received issue briefs, advocacy tips, and mock meeting practices from ASCE Government Relations staff and returning advocates.  The day ended with a welcoming banquet where members celebrated advocacy wins across different sections and branches, followed by remarks from members of Congress across the party line. 


ASCE Legislative Fly-In Event kicked off with the Younger Member Program

The next morning, ASCE Legislative Fly-In attendees played a political game as a team challenge to understand the legislative process before heading out to meet with their respective members of Congress in the afternoon.  Our Congressional visits were fueled by renewed optimism after Region 9 (California) was honored by ASCE with the 2019 Outstanding Civil Engineer Advocate of the Year Group Award for our recent advocacy wins at the state level.  Region 9 was recognized for our advocacy efforts in the victory of Senate Bill 1 (SB1), which increased the state gas tax in 2017, and the defeat of its repeal (No on Prop 6 campaign) in 2018.  These wins at the state level show that we can make a difference - one that we hope to continue to extend to the federal level. 

ASCE Region 9 was honored with the 2019 Outstanding Civil Engineer Advocate of the Year Group Award!

ASCE Region 9 civil engineering advocates met with the staff of our state’s Senator Dianne Feinstein and Senator Kamala Harris to ask for their support on the 5-cent increase on the federal gas tax for the next five years. Congress has not raised the federal gas tax since 1993, while the costs of materials and resources needed to upgrade our infrastructure keep raising.  The failure to close the infrastructure investment gap consequently passes the costs to our families: $3,400/year.  That’s $9/day or two trips to Starbucks!  

As for me, I had the opportunity to personally sit down with my district’s representative, staff of Congressman Lou Correa, and my parents’ representative, Congresswoman Susan Davis and her staff, to share my story and open a dialogue on how we can address our district’s and our nation’s infrastructure concerns.  My hope is to continue the conversation with my elected officials to bridge the gap in our infrastructure investment. 

Infrastructure is the backbone of our society.  As civil engineers who are responsible for the health, safety, and well-being of our society, we need to have a seat at the public policy table and let our voices be heard.  We need to advocate for changes in public policy at the local, state, and federal levels so that we have the funding and support we need to fulfill our professional duty of improving the public's quality of life. After all, if we do not advocate on behalf of our own profession, who would?

Lastly, if you have not seen our ASCE OC Government Relations – May 2019 Newsletter, check it out [here]!  If you want to get involved in government affairs, please reach out to us at [email protected].  

I would like to extend my thanks to my fellow ASCE Orange County members who joined me on the Capitol Hill:
Elizabeth Ruedas (not pictured), MJ Hashami, Lenard Tran, Kenneth Rosenfield!  


About the Author

Adeleine Tran, P.E., is a Geotechnical Staff Engineer with Langan Engineering & Environmental Services, Inc. As a civil engineer, she is passionate about advancing the profession and giving back to the community. In her other life as a food lover and travel enthusiast, she enjoys exploring new places and trying the locals’ favorite restaurants. For any inquiries or food recommendations, Adeleine can be reached via [email protected] and LinkedIn.

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Saint Patrick's Day Bar Crawl

In March, OC YMF hosted one of their quarterly bar crawls in Huntington Beach. Since all of the bar crawls must have a theme, this bar crawl, or pub crawl, celebrated Saint Patrick’s Day. The crawl began with the group meeting at the Irishman Pub. Here, YMF members and friends could start off with their first Irish drink and begin the night of mingling and good times. Once everyone reached the meet-up location and began socializing, it was on to the next bar. The second bar was Killarney’s Pub, also an Irish-themed bar. Here, the bar also offered a varietal of Irish drinks, games like shuffleboard and Connect 4, and plenty of space for our group of about 40 people. Yes, 40 people attended this pub crawl through Huntington Beach, all wearing festive, green outfits and some even in kilts. With the festivities, still in full swing, we travelled the third and final bar, a crowd favorite in Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach Beer Company. Although not Irish, this bar still provided our group a great time with drinks, dancing and memories. Although there were no rainbows, many of us made a pot of gold’s worth of friendships and new acquaintances.

About the Author

Jessica Leyva, PE, is a civil engineer at Michael Baker International in Orange County, CA. When she's not writing articles for ASCE OC or working as an engineer, she can be found running, skiing or hanging by the beach. Jessica can be contacted at [email protected] or LinkedIn.

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Popsicle Stick Bridge Competition 2019

The 25th Annual Popsicle Stick Bridge Competition (PSBC) was held on March 23, 2019 and put on by the Los Angeles YMF at Cal Poly Pomona's Campus. The hosting of this competition is alternated biannually between Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Bernadino/Riverside ASCE YMF’s with volunteers contributing from each organization. PSBC is an educational competition between local high school students throughout Southern California with hundreds of local high school students participating in a full day of competition to exhibit their knowledge of engineering, to be provided mentoring between generations and to bring together the engineering community. There were many stringent requirements the students had to consider when constructing their bridges, along with having to prepare a technical presentation and display. Students were broken into groups where multiple activities, testing, judging and presenting were held at the same time. The activities held were put on by the Cal Poly Pomona College students where it provided the opportunity for college students to interact with high school students and to showcase the engineering department and activities. The bridges that were constructed by the high school students were put to the test by using a weighted mechanism gradually increasing the weight until reaching the final weight or yielding. The students presented what they constructed and learned with a judged presentation. Once all of the activities were completed judging points were tallied and students were all recognized for their innovative bridge designs, where a select few received awards and special recognition. Overall each of the students learned a lot about structures, teamwork, presenting, and had a lot of fun in the process.

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ASCE Region 9

Civil Engineering Professionals Reimagine Tomorrow’s Infrastructure

On Friday, March 29, the California Region (Region 9) of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) held their Annual Infrastructure Symposium at the San Diego Convention Center with the theme “Reimagining Tomorrow’s Infrastructure”. There were approximately 200 delegates total with a fairly even distribution among the parallel Transportation and Water Tracks. Transportation Track highlights were as follows:

Session 1: Local Transportation, Technology, and Housing moderated by Domenic Lupo of AECOM localized these three topics to the San Diego Region.

  • San Diego City Councilmember Mark Kersey discussed his bold infrastructure platform of repairing and enhancing City transportation infrastructure that got him elected to the City Council along with developments that are well underway.
  • ASCE Region 9 Legislative Advocate Richard Markuson discussed Governor Gavin Newsom’s bold initiative of building 3.5 million housing units in California by 2025 to address the State’s severe housing crisis with special emphasis on the severity of the crisis, the lack of new housing construction that lead to the crisis, and the numerous housing bills currently going through the Legislature to address this crisis.
  • San Diego County Regional Airport Authority President/CEO Dennis Probst discussed the unique engineering challenges and innovative expansion plans (terminal modernization, traffic tunnel, multi-modal integration) at one of the world’s busiest and severely capacity constrained single-runway airports.
  • Mr. Mugg Stoll of SANDAG discussed the Regional Plan on Transportation, Land Use & Housing with special emphasize on the interrelationship among these three elements within a region that is characterized by steep mountain, deep valleys, and scattered water bodies.

Session 2: Mobility, Housing, & Economics in SoCal moderated by William Anderson of AECOM took a deep dive into the relationship among concepts, projects, and economics.

  • Kelly Cunningham of the San Diego Institute for Economic Research presented a series of graphs illustrating how the housing and employment demographics of San Diego compare to the rest of California and the nation, while emphasizing how the high housing prices relative to incomes are not quite as severe in the San Diego region as they are in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley.
  • Kate MacKay of Mott MacDonald offered a fascinating Australian perspective on the concept of Mobility as a Service with special emphasis on ensuring that effective policies are in place, so that the multiple elements can develop simultaneously and operate harmoniously.
  • Robert James of HNTB provided success stories on smart infrastructure innovations in New York City and their practicality to other parts of the nation. Among the hot topics currently under discussion in Manhattan is congestion pricing such as what’s currently in place in many European cities.
  • Darrell Johnson, CEO of OCTA reinforced the importance of roadway, rail, and transit projects alike in enhancing mobility throughout the heavily populated and predominantly car-oriented Orange County. Of special emphasis is the Orange County streetcar project in the fairly densely populated City of Santa Ana.

Session 3: The Big Picture on Jobs, Housing, & Mobility moderated by Bethany Dawa of TY Lin International offered a multi-modal perspective on innovations currently underway in SoCal.

  • Steve Schibuola of the IBI Group provided an overview of the San Ysidro Intermodal Transportation Center Study, presenting multi-modal transportation solutions for addressing congestion challenges at the world’s busiest land border crossing.
  • John Haggarty of SANDAG presented the Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project currently under construction with special emphasis on its relationship to Amtrak’s LOSSAN Corridor and the Coaster Rail Service.
  • Allan Kosup of Caltrans District 11 emphasized the importance of multi-modal solutions (roadway, rail, transit) interacting harmoniously to provide congestion relief within the severely capacity constrained Interstate 5 Corridor within North San Diego County
  • Joshua Schank of LA Metro discussed some of the extraordinary innovations to address near-term (Aerial Tramway concept between LA Union Station and Dodger Stadium by 2022) and long-term (ITS developments and transit expansions by the 2028 Olympics) transportation challenges within the LA Region.

Session 4: Creative Funding to Advance Housing & Mobility moderated by Bethany Dawa of TY Lin International explored economics topics such as SB 1 and shifting financing priorities to better address environmental challenges.

  • SANDAG CEO Hasan Ikhrata reinforced the value of SB 1 to the San Diego Region while underscoring the important roles that efficient, innovative, and multi-tasking millennials bring to the region’s transportation system of tomorrow.
  • Deanna Spehn, Policy Director for Senate Speaker Toni Atkins provided her own personal story of growing up in the Los Angeles Region in the 1980’s where significant air pollution challenges posed severe constraints on health and quality of life. She emphasized policies underway in Senator Toni Atkins’ office for incentivizing transportation innovations such as electric vehicle-use for cleaning up the air.
  • Commissioner Jim Madaffer discussed his own experience of owning an electric vehicle (EV), the joy of turning on his EV first thing in the morning with the dashboard showing a 350-mile range, cashing in on incentives at the Federal and State level, and establishing a stronger “nexus” between funding mechanisms and environmentally-friendly transportation solutions.
  • I emphasized the importance of expediting the completion of a usable high-speed rail segment to a major population center in order to generate ridership revenue and attract private investment, and the value of environmental clearance and full right-of-way acquisition for the expedited completion of the proposed Brightline project between Southern California and Las Vegas.

To take a deeper dive into the complete transportation system topic with emphasis on the rail perspective for getting Los Angeles ready for the 2028 Olympics, check out

For additional coverage of the 2019 Symposium in San Diego and information on the upcoming 2020 Symposium in Sacramento, check out

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ASCE OC Sustainability Committee

Bike Ride Event

ASCE Orange County Sustainability Committee held its first 2019 bike ride event on March 30. The group began the ride at Crossroads Plaza at the corner of Culver Drive and Barranca Parkway in Irvine, and rode along the San Diego Creek Trail, which follows the San Diego Creek, all the way into the Newport Beach Back Bay. We stopped at Back Bay Vista Point at the northeast corner and enjoyed the view and the breeze before we headed back on the same route to the starting point.  Along the way, we saw active Orange County Public Works construction for the San Diego Creek Channel Sediment Removal project with the project limits from I-405 near Jamboree Road to I-405 near SR-133. Thanks to all of the rainfall in the region over the winter season, the natural portion of the channel was covered with plants and flowers. The beautiful scenic ride made all the bike pedalling down and up the road crossings worth it. This bike trail is classified as a Class I bikeway; it is completely separated from the roadway and motor vehicles. The trail width north of I-405 is at least 14’, whereas the portion south of I-405 is only 10’. The wider portion of the trail provides enough space for at least three riders going in the opposite direction at the same time, whereas the narrower section only allows for one biker going in the opposite direction. The total distance we rode was roughly 11 miles out and back. We had over 15 participants and the youngest rider was only four years old!

Some of the participants enjoyed having lunch after the ride at Urban Plate Restaurant and discussed the latest in bikeway planning, design, and construction.

Bike Ride Event Route


ASCE OC Sustainability Committee Bike Ride Event Participants


Our Youngest Rider!

About the Author

Charlotte Wu is a civil engineer with the highway group in AECOM. She currently serves as co-chair for ASCE Orange County Sustainability Committee. Charlotte can be contacted at [email protected].

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OC Public Works Dam Breach Mapping Efforts Villa Park Dam Case Study

The failures of the Oroville Dam spillways in early 2017 aroused public awareness about dam safety.  In the summer of 2017, Governor Brown signed into law new requirements focused on dam safety, including mandates for dam owners across the state to produce updated inundation maps and Emergency Action Plans.  The Orange County Flood Control District (OCFCD) owns 16 dams, including the Villa Park Dam which has been classified as extremely high hazard.  On April 4, EWRI facilitated a presentation about the new mandates and, more specifically, the Villa Park Dam analysis.  EWRI was pleased to welcome two presenters at the event: Penny Lew, Senior Civil Engineer at Orange County Public Works, and Steve Parker, GIS Manager and Hydraulic Analyst at Tetra Tech.

Ms. Lew discussed the mandates, dams owned by OCFCD, and their respective hazard classifications.  The hazard classification is based solely on downstream considerations, not the current condition of the dam or its appurtenant structures.  Of the 16 dams, 1 is classified as extremely high hazard, 9 are high hazard, 1 is a significant hazard, and 5 are low hazard.  When the County was notified about the need for the inundation updates, the timeline to report for extremely high hazard classification was imminent.  The County was able to reallocate funds from other purposes in order to perform the necessary studies to comply with the mandate.  Analysis of the extremely high hazard and high hazard classifications have been completed, with the high hazard analyses currently under review with the state’s Division of Safety of Dams.  The analysis of the significant hazard dam is currently underway.  Tetra Tech was hired to assist with the inundation study for the Villa Park Dam. 

Villa Park Dam Schematic

Tetra Tech undertook a multi-pronged approach to establish the worst-case “sunny day” failure of the dam.  A “sunny day” failure assumes that the dam is holding water up to its spillway crest elevation, hydrologic inflow conditions are normal, and the dam catastrophically fails.  Tetra Tech utilized HEC-RAS 2D software to develop three dam failure scenarios.  The worst-case scenario, based upon a combination of total volume, peak flow rate and formation time, was selected for the inundation analysis.  HEC-RAS 2D was used further to model the flow released by the worst-case dam failure.  In the creation of the model, Tetra Tech utilized the County’s lidar topographic data to generate the ground surface.  The topographic data was scrutinized to correct areas of conflict, such as bridge overpasses or sub-surface drainage channels.  Roughness values based upon land use were assigned across the ground surface and grade breaks were defined.  The modeling results were submitted to the state’s Division of Water Resources and have been accepted.  Tetra Tech also used GIS software to create maps of the inundation.  An updated Emergency Action Plan is currently in development.

The presenters were very gracious and allowed a robust question and answer period with attendees after the presentation.

Flow across the Villa Park Dam spillway in 1969

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Building Science Tech Talk and Lab Tour

I must admit, I feel a twinge of trepidation when asked what I do for a living. I work in the growing field of Building Science, a discipline that really is as broad as it sounds. When asked, I usually explain that Building Science is the practical application of physics and scientific testing to improve the structures we build and the environments inside them. At the risk of becoming too philosophical, one can think of a building as the boundary between outside and inside - an enclosure that we rely on to keep the bad stuff out and good stuff in. By applying a scientific approach to our building enclosures, we can improve occupant comfort and reduce the risk of our buildings rotting to the ground, burning to the ground, falling to the ground, or worse. By this point, the person I’m talking to is blinking at me with a look on their face that says, “This guy’s talking nonsense, but he seems excited about it.” So I set out to shine some light on Building Science for my fellow members of the ASCE by putting together two events - a Tech Talk presentation on the basics of building enclosure consulting and a Lab Tour of my firm’s building science facility.

My Tech Talk presentation focused on how Building Science is applied to building enclosures during the design and construction phases of projects. Huitt-Zollars graciously hosted the event for ASCE members on April 9, 2019. At its heart, my presentation explained what a building enclosure is, what it does, and how it can go terribly, terribly wrong. We demand a lot from our building enclosures. They are expected to control the movement of multiple phenomena, namely: water, air, moisture, energy, sound, and fire. I discussed several examples of how a theoretical understanding of each of the components of a wall assembly like framing, insulation, gypsum board, stucco, etc., can help to predict the performance of the building in a particular climate. To improve the airtightness of a house in a cold climate like Canada, for example, one could install a plastic film on the inside before installing drywall over it. This would improve the energy performance by eliminating the drafts in the house and deliver decades of reliable service. Now if one built a house in the swamps of Florida with the same plastic film beneath the drywall, the structure would rot away. The house would remain nice and cool inside while it’s warm and humid outside. Imagine storing a bag of ice in a wooden box, and you’ll begin to understand that condensation inside an exterior wall assembly can do some real damage. With the application of some simple hygrothermal analysis, one can calculate the condensation potential inside of a wall in any given climate zone; however, this isn’t always done and I am often called to investigate why a building is not performing well. My Tech Talk was sprinkled with newsworthy examples of what can happen when things go sideways. Often, improved control of one phenomenon can be achieved at the tragic detriment of another. The renovation of Grenfell Tower in London, for example, sacrificed fire performance for increased thermal performance. While theory, math, and experience can help inform design decisions, it couldn’t be called “Building Science” without the cornerstone of the scientific method: experimentation.

From L to R: Joe Sinkiewicz, Ashlyn Alexander, Robert Martinez, Jazzy Quinabo, and Chuck Karunathilake.

Laboratory testing is an integral part of Building Science. After all, what good would be analyzing a design and determining the performance requirements of the architectural components if an owner has no means of determining the performance of the options available? My firm, Intertek, has a laboratory in Lake Forest, CA that regularly tests architectural components. On April 5th, ASCE members toured the facility and learned how manufacturers can verify that their products perform as designed. Intertek’s lab, and others like it, simulate many of the phenomena that building enclosures are designed to resist. Attendees had the opportunity to observe a variety of specialty environments and equipment that allow Building Science engineers to replicate phenomena. Some highlights from the tour included the lab’s chambers for testing sound attenuation of window and wall assemblies, an oven for testing materials using an accelerated aging process, and a rig for testing windows for water intrusion resistance. Tucked away under a custom shroud was the facility’s pièce de résistance - a cannon over 10 feet long used to fire lumber at windows and doors to test their projectile resistance during tornadoes and hurricanes.

I set a personal goal last year to increase awareness of Building Science among the Civil Engineering community. I hope that April’s Building Science Tech Talk, Lab Tour, and even this article has furthered that goal. However, with a discipline as far reaching as Building Science, I’m sure I’ve left you thinking, “This guy’s talking nonsense, but he seems excited about it!”

About the Author

Joe Sinkiewicz is a civil engineer and building enclosure consultant with degrees in structural engineering and physics from UC San Diego. Outside of work, Joe enjoys growing live plants in his aquariums and avoiding exercise. Joe can be reached at [email protected] or LinkedIn.

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Mentorship Program Mid-Year Check-In Event

A lively discussion and a valuable exchange of ideas took place at the Mentorship Program Mid-Year Check-In Event on April 10, 2019 at the PACE facilities in Fountain Valley.  Twenty-five mentors, protégés, and Mentorship Committee members participated in the evening activities.  After self-introductions, co-chairs Paul Gabot and Marlo Maynigo led the evening’s program that included a preview of upcoming ASCE events, a review of past mentorship activities, and a reminder of upcoming mentorship meetings and events.  Then attendees were divided into two groups of protégés and two groups of mentors and discussed lessons learned, different mentoring styles, suggestions for the mentorship program, types of advice given and received, mentoring activities, and other related topics.

Examples of some of the lessons learned from their current mentor-protégé experience include:

  • Listening more and trying not to drive the discussion.
  • Asking the right questions to draw out self-discovery.
  • Importance of prioritizing goals and time management.
  • Appreciating differences and commonalities of motivations and values between different generations of engineers.
  • Taking notes during mentoring sessions and checking up on follow-through of previous sessions.

Special thanks to PACE Advanced Water Engineering for graciously lending its facilities for this event and for sponsoring dinner for the group.

Upcoming events include the July 2019 Mentorship Panel Discussion that is open to all ASCE members (not just participants of the current Mentorship Program).  This is a first-time ASCE event added to bring focus to the importance of mentoring to professional careers.  Additional details on the Mentorship Panel Discussion are forthcoming in the next Newsletter.

In August, the current Mentorship Program will conclude with the Year-end Banquet as its final group event.  Also that month, an announcement inviting ASCE members interested in participating in the 2019-2020 Mentorship Program will appear in the Newsletter. 

2018-2019 ASCE OC YMF Mentorship Program Committee Chairs, Members, Mentors, and Protégés

About the Author

Bryant Wong is Senior Consultant in environmental engineering at Polytechnique Environmental. He has been active in ASCE for over 40 years starting as a student member. This year he is serving as an advisor to the Mentorship Committee. Bryant can be reached on LinkedIn.

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ASCE OC Branch

April Luncheon: LA Metro SBE/DBE Programs and Opportunities

On April 18, Jerry Jacobsen, Principal of Diversity and Economic Opportunity, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Authority (LA Metro), presented an overview of the LA Metro Small and Disadvantaged Business Programs and Opportunities.

LA Metro uses the SBE/DBE programs to promote social responsibility, small business goals, and to provide growth opportunity to develop small businesses as Prime consultants. On a typical contract, larger firms will bring the small business in to create an organic mentorship situation. This setup allows smaller firms to learn and become leaders. In particular, the SBE Prime program allows small firms to manage, execute, and perform the project. The end result being that they graduate the program.

LA Metro Station

Interested firms should attend the monthly “How to Do Business with Metro” workshops held the 2nd Tuesday of every month at LA Metro headquarters. Next, they should obtain the Plan Holders List for the upcoming projects to reach out to the leads.

Once they are ready to make the step to be a Prime consultant themselves, the SBE should research the SBE Prime Set Aside opportunities on the LA Metro Vendor Portal.

Jerry Jacobsen

Upcoming Projects, including SBE Prime set-asides, will be listed in the 12 Month Look Ahead. This provides time for the teams to form and prepare to bid. It is recommended to line up the NAICS Code on the Company Resume with those listed in the upcoming projects.

About the Author

Jason Fix, PE, is a Bridge Engineer for McLean & Schultz. He has over 10 years of experience working on bridges and structures in Orange County. He is interested in exploring the civil engineering field and sharing knowledge within the professional network. Jason can be contacted at [email protected].

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ASCE OC Transportation & Development Institute

May 2019 Luncheon: National Toll Interoperability

The Transportation & Development Institute (T&DI) held its first 2019 Lunch Program on May 7 at the University Club at UCI with speakers from the Transportation Corridor Agency (TCA). Rick Carrier, TCA’s Director of Tolling and Customer Information Systems, introduced us to the “New Era of Tolling”, in which 6C tolling technology will allow to us to replace those bulky transponders with “stickers.” Samuel Johnson, TCA’s Chief Toll Operations Officer, discussed the ability to achieve interoperability through this 6C tolling technology. Using this technology, drivers throughout the western states will be able to use the same tolling devices for 33 facilities in 6 states. Thank you to our lunch sponsor WKE. As the event was well attended, it was a great kick-off for the re-start of the T&DI.

From L to R: Adrian Anderson, Steve Crouch, Juliet Su, Samuel Johnson, Kelsie Anderson, Rick Carrier,  Matt Dennerline, Alahesh Thurairajah, Alan Su, and Clint Isa.

Fast Trak “sticker” with 6C tolling technology

Western Region Intra-Operability between agencies

About the Author

Steve Crouch is a transportation engineer/project manager at HDR. Steve’s broad experience includes all aspects of transportation project delivery from planning to design and construction. Outside of work, Steve likes spending time with his family and gardening in his yard. Steve can be reached at [email protected].

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ASCE OC & OC Rescue Mission

Laurel House Construction

On May 11, 2019, ASCE OC volunteered for the Orange County Laurel House organization where we helped with the demolition of an old home to prepare for the renovations for their new home for at-risk, homeless or runaway teenage boys. In addition, ASCE OC also hosted a “Spring Cleaning” clothing drive for the month of May and will be donating items to the homes! The Laurel House is the only teen home shelter of its kind that provides long term care to ensure success and it was great to work with their construction team to get going on the new home.

The Laurel House provided all the safety gear and tools necessary and the leads had quite a few tasks throughout the home to do. The duties ranged from ripping out the walls down to their foundation in all the rooms to clearing out debris from previous demolition projects onto their fresh dumpster. Each task required teamwork to figure out the safest and efficient way to take down the walls because there were a lot of nails and wall trims at the top that needed to be taken down before the walls could be done. Once everyone got the rhythm going, the walls and wood planks were literally being ripped out at a great pace! Volunteers described the work as fun, satisfying and a nice destresser after a long week. We look forward to seeing the new home and more opportunities to help the Laurel House programs.

For more information about The Laurel House, visit!

Thank you to our volunteers (L to R): Dana Robertson, Ashlyn Alexander, Adrianna Lundberg, Adeleine Tran, Evelyn Tran, Gabriela Ruiz, Esmeralda Briseño, Nestor Godinez, and Joseph Huynh.

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ASCE OC Branch & Structural Engineering Institute

May Luncheon: Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project

On May 16, the ASCE OC Branch and the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) successfully hosted the May Luncheon on the Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project in San Diego, CA. Guest speakers, Pooya Haddadi of WSP and Dan Heiman of Skanska USA Civil, presented the design and construction progress of the Genesee Viaduct in great details. The Genesee Viaduct, which is one of the three major viaducts within the Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project, is 1.1-mile-long and runs in the median of Genesee Avenue. Speakers have also commended the successful practice of the delivery construction/design method, which is Construction Manager General Contractor.

Guest Speaker: Pooya Haddadi, Supervising Bridge Engineer, WSP


Guest Speaker: Dan Heiman, Project Executive, Skanska USA Civil


ASCE OC Branch and SEI Board Members and Guest Speakers

About the Author

Lynn Odgiiv, PE, is a Senior Bridge Engineer at Aztec Engineering.

Local News

OC Streetcar Project Verified Envision Silver

Article from OC Streetcar.

The OC Streetcar project, managed by the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), recently earned an Envision Silver rating for sustainable infrastructure. This is the 15th Envision-verified project in the state, and the first modern streetcar project in California to receive Envision recognition.

The project helps OCTA and the cities of Santa Ana and Garden Grove reach their goals to increase transportation options and improve transit connectivity. The $407.7 million project, which is expected to begin operation in 2022, will operate along a 4.15-mile route that connects the bustling Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center (SARTC) — providing regional rail, OCTA bus, and intercity and international bus services — to a new multimodal hub at Harbor Boulevard/Westminster Avenue in Garden Grove.

The project is being constructed and will be funded primarily through a combination of local, state and federal funds, including California Climate Investments and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). The project recently received a $149 million Full Funding Grant Agreement from the FTA―the first modern streetcar to receive a New Starts FFGA and the largest ever New Starts commitment to a streetcar project.

Using the Envision framework helped the project support sustainability and environmental commitments for the funding agencies, including measures to mitigate environmental impacts; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; provide benefits to disadvantaged communities; and drive economic, environmental and public health benefits.

Developed as a collaboration between OCTA and the cities of Santa Ana and Garden Grove, the project is anticipated to play an important role in improving transit accessibility for transit-dependent residents and relieving congestion at major streets and local freeways by providing east-west connections. Designed with input from across the community, OCTA is working numerous consultants, including HDR, program manager and Envision facilitator, and designer HNTB.

The Envision sustainable infrastructure rating system assesses sustainability in five categories: Quality of Life, Leadership, Natural World, Resource Allocation, and Climate and Resilience. These contribute to positive social, economic and environmental impacts on a community during the planning, design and construction of infrastructure projects. Innovative project features incorporated into the project include:

Quality of Life: The streetcar route reintroduces rail to a former rail right-of-way, utilizing previously unused land for a significant transportation improvement. Focused on making connections, the project links multiple modes of transport, including rail and bus, as well as reinforcing the walkable character of the two communities and taking into consideration bicycle connections. The project provides “last mile” connectivity to several major activity centers and key neighborhoods within the project area, as well as employment, restaurant and retail centers in Santa Ana, Garden Grove and surrounding areas.

Leadership: The OC Streetcar project offered numerous opportunities for stakeholder involvement, from the initial Alternatives Analysis, through Environmental Assessment and planning, design and engineering. The objectives of the project’s outreach efforts were aimed not only at increasing the overall awareness of the project and keeping stakeholders updated, but also soliciting feedback and incorporating public feedback into the final design concept. This process continues with events and surveys posted on the project website.

Resource Allocation: The design of the streetcar stops emphasizes sustainability. For streamlined maintenance, all stops will adhere to a preselected ‘kit-of-parts’ design, which means all of the stop elements―such as the canopies, benches, trash receptacles, furnishing, or signs―are the same for every stop along the route. Additionally, the maintenance facility’s train wash system is designed for ease of maintenance, recycling and parts reuse. The operations and maintenance plan for streetcar vehicles will not only allow for ease of disassembly, but will ensure long-term vehicle reliability.

Natural World: The streetcar route uses existing city streets and unused rail right-of-way for the alignment and the Maintenance and Storage Facility repurposes a site previously used for industrial and commercial businesses, locating one hundred percent of the project footprint on previously developed land. The project’s landscape plans integrate locally appropriate and low water use plants along the project corridor, at streetcar stops and at the maintenance facility.

Climate and Resilience: A goal of the streetcar is to reduce air pollution by reducing the number of single-occupancy vehicles on the road and reducing traffic congestion. Air pollution reduction is a focus of OCTA and both the Cities included in this project. In addition, this project fulfills broad agency and state goals, which both consider a long-term view of resource depletion and extreme events, as well as social and economic changes.

OC Streetcar earns Envision Silver for sustainable infrastructure-for release

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ASCE OC Branch

Welcome New Members!

Welcome to the American Society of Civil Engineers! We are happy you joined us in ASCE's Orange County Branch. Remember...there are 101 ways to benefit from your membership with ASCE. Become involved, educate yourself on an engineering topic outside of your expertise, build relationships with others in the industry - to name a few.

Please contact a Board Member if you have questions, or a committee chairperson to become involved.

Welcome New Members:
February 2019

Rhonda Abouazra
Bakri Al Mouradi
Asma Aljazzar
Sonia Alonso
Joseph Barrera
Jesse Bennett
Katrina Blake
Carter Blanchard
Krystal Chavez
Austin Chen
Jennie Forsberg
Yesenia Garcia
Joshua Geronimo
Kimberly Haas
Kevin Hanna
Lee Keslerwest
May Kyi
Heeun Lee
Jazmin Martinez
Robert McLean
James McPhie
Songhee Min
Dennis Nguyen
Daniel Price
Dominique Quintanilla
John Stapleton
Hannah Sutkowski
Virginia Suveiu
Matthew Tem
Adrian Urias
Christian Wong
Jie Xue
Pegah Yavari

March 2019

Francisco Guereca
Jesus Lopez Arellano
Eduardo Marino
Allyson Marnocha
Anne Mast
Leroy Nguyen
Mahnaz Niazi
Scott O'Connor
Katherine Phair
Jonathan Schmidt
James Stewart-Moore
Michael Torres
Laney Wilson

April 2019

Mario Abarca
Osvaldo Aguilar
Lana Aziz-Oglii
Manuel Barrios
Carina Coles
Khalil Essayli
Varoujan Gekchyan
Nicole Gonzalez
Stephen Hoy
Meng-Horng Hsu
Michael Lafontaine
Chris Lee
Kenny Nguyen
Smit Patel
Alexandre Plaza Castel
Ramon Rubio
Kathryn Ta
Alexander Tang
Daniel Virgen

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