For HAKS’ Summer Interns — The Future Is Now

Intern-1From mid-May through the end of August, HAKS holds its annual Internship Program in which we provide deserving youth with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in an office environment.

This year, we have a heavy intern presence, comprising of both high school and college students. In addition to hiring interns directly from colleges since 2005, HAKS has been partnering with the New York City School Construction Authority (SCA) Summer Internship Program (SIP) to assist in the recruitment of high school students. We have continued our commitment and volunteered as hosts every year since then. The SCA offers paid six-week internships through SIP, which matches interns to available positions based on their career interests and skills. HAKS is one of the firms chosen to serve as intern host for the 2015 program season. The majority of interns go on to pursue careers in architecture, engineering, business, and information technology. These students participate in staff meetings and on-the-job training and are assigned program supervisors who monitor their performance through bi-weekly meetings between the interns and their supervisors. Interns who successfully complete the six-week program receive high school credit. Continue Reading →

A Milestone for the Americans with Disabilities Act

On July 26, 1990, President George H. W. Bush signed into law one of America’s most comprehensive pieces of civil rights legislation—the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This landmark legislation has reducedada25-logo-horiz-300-1 barriers, changed perceptions, and increased participation in community life for millions of Americans. The ADA prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, and transportation.

To be protected by the ADA, one must have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, be a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment. It should be remembered that whether a condition is visible or not, it still can result in substantial limitations. Continue Reading →

DC Water Tunnels for Clean Rivers

Contributed by Zaw Soeoo

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Anacostia River Tunnel ISCT Excavation

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) distributes drinking water and collects and treats wastewater for more than 600,000 residential, commercial and governmental customers in the District of Columbia. As part of this mission, DC Water operates the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant (BPAWWTP), the largest such facility in the world. The Authority’s $2.6 billion long-term control plan for combined sewer overflows (CSOs), known as the DC Clean Rivers Project, captures CSOs and conveys them to the BPAWWTP for treatment. The Clean Rivers Project is comprised of a system of 20 miles of 23-foot-diameter tunnels at depths from 50 to 160 feet. HAKS is a member of the consultant construction management (CCM) team providing inspection services, including tunnel and near-surface construction, for both the Anacostia River and Blue Plains design-build tunnel projects. Giant tunnel boring machines (TBMs) are being used to bore the underground structures that form DC Water’s solution to CSOs. Continue Reading →

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 →