OneNYC: The Plan for a Strong and Just City

DSC07801 REVLast month, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio released OneNYC: The Plan for a Strong and Just City, the successor to Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s PlaNYC. The Mayor’s Office of Sustainability oversaw its development and shares responsibility with the Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency for ensuring its implementation. OneNYC addresses challenges such as a population of 9 million by 2040, changing climate conditions and aging infrastructure through principles of growth, sustainability, resiliency and equity. The plan builds on the four core challenges addressed in past PlaNYC reports with the addition of growing inequality, the importance of the region and New York City “voices”—a reference to the necessary input of a broad range of residents. The plan also acknowledges the growing gap between “technology haves and have-nots.” Continue reading

25 Years of Client-Focused Quality Service

Today, HAKS begins its 25th year in business. Initially a Minority Business Enterprise, HAKS is now a medium-sized, full-service consulting firm winning high-profile work. In 2014, we ranked 135 in ENR’s Top 500 Design Firms. Actually, we are many firms in one:  a construction management/inspection firm—one of the largest in the eastern region; an engineering design firm—delivering high-performance, energy-efficient and sustainable projects; an architecture/facilities design firm—employing state-of-the-art technology such as BIM and conceptual 3D modeling; a bridge inspection firm performing biennial and other inspections for major bridges throughout the northeast; a surveying and mapping firm—offering cutting-edge laser scanning and ground penetrating radar technology; and a special inspections and material testing firm—the only agency in the New York market accredited to conduct special and progress inspections in all categories of building construction.

We could not have reached this milestone without our skilled employees and our long-standing client relationships. We thank our employees for exemplifying HAKS’ commitment to excellence, and we thank our clients for their trust and for allowing us to be of service to them. Continue reading

Earth Day 2015: “It’s Our Turn to Lead”

NY317, Lenevar Avenue

Lenevar Avenue, Staten Island

Today, April 22nd, marks the day when events are held globally to demonstrate support for environmental protection. Known as “Earth Day,” it was first celebrated on April 22, 1970 and has become a day to reflect on our planet, our environment and what we can do to help keep them healthy. Several changes were enacted after the first Earth Day in 1970—the Environmental Protection Agency was established; the federal Occupational Health and Safety Act was passed by a coalition of labor and environmental groups; and, within the next three years, such landmark achievements as the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act were passed. Continue reading

The Versatility of Concrete

While concrete is a basic building block of most structures that we see and use every day, it is something that we don’t think much about.  However, concrete is usually the material of choice when compressive strength and durability are paramount. Concrete is also naturally fire resistant.

Gilboa DamAccording to the Concrete Joint Sustainability Initiative, concrete “is strong and durable, resistant to deterioration and damage. It buffers temperature, and it can be colored and placed to do this in a way that works with passive solar energy to heat or cool spaces. It buffers sound, providing respite in a crowded, noisy world. It is versatile, allowing a large range of shapes, textures, and structural approaches to create the function, look, and feel appropriate to the project. It is also versatile in the flexibility of component materials, a quality which both extends the range of performance properties—insulation, permeability, and strength—and allows variation in the resources used to produce it. Concrete can play a vital role in the way we conserve and protect natural resources in the structures we create with it and the processes by which we produce it.”   Continue reading

HAKS Uses 3D Software to Transform Downtown Building

225 bowery 3D Section_4 (2)HAKS’ Architecture/Facilities Design studio provides clients with full design and construction phase services for new and existing facilities and employs state-of-the-art technology such as Building Information Modeling (BIM).

As the Architect of Record, HAKS is utilizing an empowering BIM software to repurpose a 10-story, 100-year-old building in Lower Manhattan into a micro-hotel by adding four stories and a sub-basement level.  Revit software is specifically designed for BIM, enabling design and construction professionals to bring ideas from concept to fruition with a coordinated and consistent approach.  This single application includes features for architectural design, MEP and structural engineering and construction, helping to maintain a vision of the final product from design through construction. Continue reading

Recommissioning of Gilboa Dam

Recommissioning of Gilboa

Recommissioning of Gilboa

On October 31, 2014, HAKS Senior Vice President Al Lopez, P.E., and Vice President Todd Yanoff, P.E., of our Water/Wastewater Group, joined New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) Commissioner Emily Lloyd and other dignitaries at the recommissioning of the Gilboa Dam in Schoharie County, New York.  A HAKS-led joint venture has been providing Construction Management services for the rehabilitation of the dam—the firm’s largest construction management project to date and believed to be the largest public works project in the Catskills. D&B Engineers and Architects, PC/URS was our joint venture partner; Gannett Fleming/Hazen and Sawyer joint venture was designer; and Barnard Construction/DA Collins joint venture was the contractor. The NYCDEP initiated this $400 million project to extend the life of the dam another 100 years and bring it into compliance with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation safety standards. Says Commissioner Lloyd, “This was a safety project foremost.” Phase 3 of this massive undertaking, the $138 million reconstruction of the Gilboa Dam, has been completed two years ahead of schedule in spite of a nine-month delay caused by Tropical Storm Irene. Continue reading

HAKS Launches New Website

HAKS has a new look.   As we approach our 25th anniversary, there is much to celebrate. It is hard to believe that this 600-person, full-service consulting firm began in 1991 as a two-person operation.  Our multicultural and talented workforce provides our clients with construction management/inspection, engineering, architecture/facilities design, surveying and mapping, material testing and special inspections services. Continue reading

Moving Forward on Transportation Infrastructure Funding

To quote the General Contractors Association, “The Time to Think about Infrastructure is while It is Still Working.” And as a new year begins, now seems to be the time to rethink new construction and repair of infrastructure of all categories.

Staten Island Projects-3-WebCrop

St. George Ferry Terminal Ramps Rehabilitation

The nation’s highways are primarily financed by the Highway Trust Fund, which obtains most of its money from a gas tax of 18.4 cents per gallon. This tax is not tied to the price of gas or inflation and, as a result, has lost much of its purchasing power over the years. The Obama Administration recently held an Infrastructure Investment Summit to find solutions to the infrastructure funding crisis.

While the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee approved a $265 billion 6-year transportation bill that reauthorizes MAP-21, it still leaves a gap of $100 million between Highway Trust Fund revenues and proposed spending levels, which impacts both our mobility and economy. Continue reading

Post Sandy–Rebuilding and Resiliency

“With the immediate emergency repairs finished following Superstorm Sandy and temporary fixes in place, city and state agencies in New York and New Jersey are now focused on planning, funding and building long-term resiliency projects,” observes a supplement (August 25/September 1, 2014) to ENR New York  “The Rebuilding Continues.” The issue reports on how infrastructure and facilities are being rethought by city and state entities and will be rebuilt to withstand the force of a storm such as Sandy, and that state and local programs are “ramping up.” Continue reading