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November 27, 2018


CAWV’s Construction Matters is a compilation of news articles from around the state of West Virginia on projects and issues of interest to CAWV members. A brief summary is provided for each article.  To view the full article, click the link to the original source. 


Wayne County Courthouse Clock Tower getting a new lease on life

(WCHS8 Eyewitness News 11/20) Water damage has taken a toll on the clock tower on top of the Wayne County Courthouse. Wayne County is getting a $100,000 state grant to fix the issues. Officials want to do the work now before the damage impacts the entire courthouse. The sounds of the clock tower on top of the Wayne County Courthouse bring back fond memories for Linda Whaley.


BOE approves new wrestling room for HHS

(The Herald-Dispatch 11/21) Huntington High School's wrestling program will soon have a newly remodeled home as the Cabell County Board of Education approved a contract for a new wrestling room during Tuesday night's meeting in Huntington. The $464,700 project will expand the room from 40 feet by 40 feet to 40 feet by 80 feet, along with additional restrooms. The construction is to be funded jointly through state grants ($71,000), school funds ($42,574), school athletic boosters ($29,686) and the county's permanent improvement fund ($321,440). The construction bid was awarded to Swope Construction Company. No timetable for completion has been determined.


Masonry students aid Armory renovation

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/21) Mixing mortar, handling a saw and laying brick, masonry students from the Washington County Career Center were hard at work Tuesday on a project to stand the test of time. “Here’s a project that will stay up instead of being torn down after class,” said Canaan Davis, 17, of Marietta. “That’s why I love masonry, you can finish a project and be proud of what you built, working with your hands.”


Anonymous donor gives $170,000 to replace footbridge in Wheeling

(The Intelligencer 11/21) The city of Wheeling is receiving an early holiday gift — an anonymous donation of $170,000 — to replace a deteriorated footbridge in the Woodsdale-Pleasanton area. Speaking at Wheeling City Council’s regular meeting Tuesday night, City Manager Robert Herron said an anonymous donor agreed earlier to give $150,000 for the project, but offered an additional $20,000 gift on Tuesday. He said the total cost of the footbridge replacement is $175,000.


Mall Ring Road work in St. Clairsville won’t be done for Black Friday

(The Intelligencer 11/22) Work on Mall Ring Road has stalled due to uncooperative weather, and the route to some businesses will not be open in time for Black Friday shopping as some had hoped. The road was closed in early October from the back of the Ohio Valley Mall to the Residence Inn and Buffalo Wild Wings to allow for utility work and other projects to be completed. Traffic to those businesses is being detoured onto a newly completed bridge over Interstate 70.


Grant will expand City Park playground

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/22) A $100,000 grant to further expand the boundless playground at City Park has been approved. Jane Burdette, president of the Junior League and a co-chairman of the committee organizing the playground project, was pleased and appreciative of the award. The money will be used for equipment, a surface matching that at the playground and the construction and installation, said Ryan Barber, development projects administrator for the city of Parkersburg.


Moundsville receives almost $93,000 to renovate aging Four Seasons Pool

(The Intelligencer 11/22) City leaders are getting help with half of what they expect to spend repairing the city’s Four Seasons Pool. Council learned during its Tuesday night council meeting that the city is getting $92,811 in grant money from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The city applied for the grant in April while seeking matching funds for work on the pool, which has long been targeted by the city for repairs. Recently, the city has replaced the pool’s Dectron dehumidification unit as well as the heater and water pump. It also has performed other renovation work on the pool.


$20 million Entsorga WV facility in Berkeley County aims to revolutionize waste management

(West Virginia MetroNews 11/22) A new facility east of Berkeley County’s county seat will be the first of its kind in the United States. Entsorga West Virginia is a collaborative effort between Apple Valley Waste Technologies, Chemtex Global and Entsorga Italia to open the $20 million facility along Grapevine Road near Martinsburg. When operational in 2019, Entsorga WV will be the first resource recovery facility in the country to use Entsorga Italia’s mechanical biological treatment (MBT) system.


Two grants awarded to Town of Grantsville

(The Garrett County Republican 11/22) Two grants have been awarded to the town of Grantsville and were noted at Monday’s meeting. Town Administrator Robin Jones reported that a Program Open Space 2019 grant for $41,400 was awarded to resurface the tennis courts and purchase new picnic tables for all three pavilions in the town park. The town’s 10-percent contribution amounts to $4,600. A proposal was received for the picnic tables from G&W Lumber in Accident. Don Opel will build the tables as a winter project and have them ready by spring to put in the pavilions.


National Guard continues steady progress on flood recovery

(WVNews 11/23) West Virginia’s National Guard has continued to make steady progress on helping survivors of the June 2016 flood recovery, officials said. The state’s National Guard, which took operational control of the RISE flood recovery program, reported on Friday that there have been 39 completed cases. “Construction work is nearly complete on RISE West Virginia’s first stick-built home reconstruction project,” the release said. “


City of Bluefield receives $15,000 grant for developing Exit 1

(Bluefield Daily Telegraph 11/24) The City of Bluefield is taking advantage of a federal program that could entice development around I-77 Exit 1. With the help of a $15,000 grant from AEP (Appalachian Electric Power), the city will develop a strategic marketing plan and materials for Opportunity Zone development on property off I-77 in Bluefield, and near Princeton as well. “I applied for the grant jointly for the city and the county,” said Jim Spencer, Bluefield’s director of economic and community development, adding that the Opportunity Zones were added to the tax code by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act last year.


Bridgeport, WV, City Council to take next steps for Rec Center financing at meetings on Monday, Tuesday

(The Exponent Telegram 11/23) Bridgeport officials will take the next procedural steps toward securing financing for the Indoor Sports and Recreation Complex project during Bridgeport City Council meetings scheduled for Monday and Tuesday. During Monday’s regular meeting, the members of council will be asked to consider a financing agreement from WesBanco, Mayor Andy Lang said. The details of the agreement will be released during the meeting, Lang said.


After Kanawha Falls Bridge closure, residents wait for new span

(Charleston Gazette-Mail 11/24) For residents of about two-dozen homes near the Kanawha Falls Bridge, a drive that used to take five minutes now takes about 45 minutes, ever since the bridge was ordered closed earlier this month. A corroded beam on the bridge broke on Nov. 1, creating an unsafe gap between the bridge deck and a support truss, according to West Virginia Department of Transportation officials. They believe an overweight truck caused the damage to the 90-year-old, 1,001-foot span. (Contractor: Orders Construction Company, Inc.)


John McCoy: Next phase of Bluestone project could affect fishing for up to 10 years

(Charleston Gazette-Mail 11/24) Changes appear to be in store for one of West Virginia’s favorite fishing spots, and we anglers probably aren’t going to like them. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is getting ready for the next phase in their ongoing effort to stabilize Bluestone Dam. This phase — which will take up to 10 years to complete — will disrupt fishing immediately downstream from the dam, in the New River further downstream, and could even disrupt fishing in Bluestone Lake for weeks or months at a time. During the work, tentatively scheduled to begin in 2020, contractors will rebuild and reinforce the dam’s main “stilling basin,” a wide concrete pan that prevents the dam’s turbulent outflow from scouring away at the structure’s base.


Howard Swint: South Charleston taking big gamble on fly ash pond site

(Charleston Gazette-Mail 11/24) One of the biggest gambles in recent economic development is about to unfold in South Charleston where a tax-increment financing (TIF) measure will underwrite a shopping center built on top of the old FMC fly ash pond. In what is best described as a contrarian play in the retail sector of the economy, the City of South Charleston is betting that it can outmaneuver both regional and national trends that are witnessing a sharp contraction in demand for the very type of development it is underwriting.


W.Va. 72 erosion continues, DOH waiting for engineering report

(The Dominion Post 11/24) A design is under way to repair the slide on a section of WV 72, south of Rowlesburg, according to Darby Clayton, acting West Virginia Division of Highways District 4 manager. “The last time I talked to (DOH officials) they said they’ve been waiting for the last couple of months for an engineering report,” Preston County Commissioner Dave Price said. He said the slide, near Rowlesburg, is in a curve in the road and cannot be seen very well.


Wood County Board of Education to discuss Erickson All-Sports Facility

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/24) The Wood County Board of Education will meet Tuesday to again discuss a project at Erickson All-Sports Facility. A previous school board had approved $700,000 for construction, and the Erickson All-Sports Facility Committee already had spent $200,000 on construction of a foundation for the structure. However, officials said bids came in higher than expected. The board Tuesday will consider approval of the low bid by Grae-Con Construction at nearly $783,000.


Timeline for new Monroe County power plant extended

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/25) At the Long Ridge Energy Terminal in Hannibal, Ohio River Partners has extended the completion timeline for the new power plant. The construction will take place on the former Ormet Aluminium Corp. site that closed in 2013. The cost of the project is estimated between $500 million and $600 million.


Clarksburg, WV, in the midst of $2.5 million worth of infrastructure improvement projects

(WVNews 11/25) Clarksburg is in the process of addressing multiple embankment failures and roadway slips in the city through a series of projects totaling more than $2.5 million in construction and engineering costs. Over the past few months, city officials have undertaken 10 projects that are now at various stages of completion, ranging from fully finished to not yet started, according to Assistant City Manager Anthony Bellotte. (Contractor: Rock Forge Bridge)


High Technology Foundation: Planting the seeds of WV's economic future

(WVNews 11/25) Anyone who has traveled through Fairmont on the interstate has seen the sprawling I-79 Technology Park from their car window. The giant, white satellite dishes rising up from the hills are hard to miss. The park — which is currently home to more than 30 businesses, multiple federal agencies and over 1,200 employees — is more than just a collection of offices and buildings. Jim Estep, High Technology Foundation president and CEO, believes the facility is the rich, fertile soil where the seeds of West Virginia’s future economy can grow and flourish.


Engineering based fields provide wide variety of high paying careers in West Virginia

(WVNews 11/25) With a heavy focus on the energy extraction industries throughout its history, engineering has gone hand in hand with West Virginia’s growth since the very beginning. But, according to West Virginia University Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources Dean Eugene Cilento, the engineering industry in the state today handles many varied needs. “We offer degrees in extraction-related fields, but we also have chemical, biomedical, computer, cybersecurity and more,” Cilento said. “While there are some fundamentals that apply to all engineering, it is a very diverse field.” Prominent Engineering firms have been making a positive impact in West Virginia as of late. One, in particular is environmental and transportation firm Rummel, Klepper & Kahl, LLP who recently opened up a new office in the Kanawha-Valley region.


Experts say WV architecture industry continues to move forward

(WVNews 11/25) While West Virginia’s many hills might be beautiful, many architects across the state said they sure aren’t easy to build on. But that hasn’t stopped the Mountain State’s many architectural films from trying in constructing some of the country’s most impressive buildings in some truly precarious locations. Fairmont State University Architectural Department Chair Phillip Freeman said there can be numerous difficulties that come with designing buildings in West Virginia. Ed Tucker knows a thing or two about building in Appalachia. A member of the West Virginia Board of Architects, Tucker’s company, Edward Tucker Architects Inc., has been the mastermind behind some of the Mountain State’s most impressive buildings.


Zoning, annexation, building demolition among Weston, WV, goals for 2019

(The Exponent Telegram 11/25) With less than two months left on the calendar for 2018, officials in Weston are already looking forward to the goals and projects they would like to see tackled during 2019. Weston Mayor Julia Spelsberg said the city hopes to mark a longterm project off its list during the first six months of the year. The project would see the municipality divided into designated zones for the first time in its history, Spelsberg said.


Marshall to give workshop on construction contracting Nov. 28

(The Herald-Dispatch 11/26) Marshall University's Center for Continuing Education will present a workshop, "Construction Contracting and Management," to provide an update on current issues and best practices for contractors, design professionals, engineers, architects, vendors and business owners. The workshop will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28, in the Memorial Student Center on Marshall's Huntington campus.


Marshall signs agreement with local STEM high school for dual credit

(The Herald-Dispatch 11/26) Marshall University has entered into an agreement with Tri-State STEM+M, a fully accredited 9th-12th grade public high school with STEM designation from the Ohio Department of Education, to offer dual credit college courses to its students. The high school is one of six STEM-designated schools in Ohio. Its name refers to Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine.


Engineering firm studies Marietta street

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/26) The data is in on counts, routes and peak times for traffic in and around Marietta College. This fall Marietta College, Marietta City Council and the city administration partnered for a traffic study concerning the traffic of Butler Street, and surrounding blocks to determine potential outcomes of closing Butler Street to through-traffic. Then between Nov. 5 and 16, the engineering firm selected to produce the study set up three types of data collection not only on Butler, but also Third, Putnam, Greene, and Seventh streets surrounding the college and even placed one device northeast of the college on Greene Street past Qdoba.


Major projects at Cacapon Resort State Park set to begin

(Construction 11/26) Ground was broken during a ceremony Nov. 2 for major improvements at Cacapon Resort State Park in Morgan County. State and local officials worked the shovels and praised the $25.38 million project, which will bring much-needed upgrades to Cacapon Resort and provide additional attractions for visitors to the Eastern Panhandle. "Our parks are some of the most beautiful places in the world you'll ever see, and I am following through on my promise to update and improve our parks to make them more attractive," said Gov. Jim Justice. "These improvements will make Cacapon an even more attractive vacation destination in the Eastern Panhandle and bring more tourism dollars to West Virginia." (Contractor: Paramount Builders)


Bridgeport, WV, City Council votes for Rec Center financing agreement Monday evening

(The Exponent Telegram 11/27) The members of Bridgeport City Council voted to enter into a financing agreement to fund the construction of the Bridgeport Indoor Sports and Recreation Complex during their meeting Monday evening. The agreement, through Wesbanco, will provide the city with more than $40 million for construction of the new facility, said Mayor Andy Lang. “We had 14 local banks that were asked to give us a quote on this, and Wesbanco has given us the best quote,” he said. “They gave us all the terms that we wished for.


Recovery Point, Ceredo VFD among USDA projects

(The Herald-Dispatch 11/27) Recovery Point of Huntington Inc. and the Ceredo Volunteer Fire Department are part of a $501 million investment by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 60 projects across the country, assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett announced in a news release. Recovery Point is receiving a $600,000 loan that will be used to purchase a facility in Mt. Hope. After renovations are complete, the facility will be used as a residential substance abuse rehabilitation home for approximately 130 individuals for a nine-county service area.


Belpre moves toward installing solar panels

(The Parkersburg News and Sentinel 11/27) The city of Belpre is taking steps to install a solar energy system at the Belpre Fire Station on Washington Boulevard. At Monday’s meeting of Belpre City Council, the first reading of a resolution allowing the mayor and safety-service director to execute a contract with Pickering Energy Solutions LLC was approved unanimously. Once the second and third readings are approved, the project should be able to move forward and will only take a few days to install the system, said Mayor Mike Lorentz.


Needed road work may complicate budget process in Steubenville

(The Intelligencer 11/27) Steubenville leaders should keep funding needs for several major road projects in mind as they finalize the 2019 budget, city Engineer Mike Dolak said. The Sunset and Lovers Lane intersection upgrade — adding or extending turning lanes at the busy intersection — will get under way around mid-March, Dolak said. The city’s share of the $2.1 million project, about $65,000, already has been encumbered, he said. The federal government will pick up the tab for just over $1.8 million of that project’s cost.