Old State Chemistry parking lot and sidewalk renovation

Reed Arena turf renovation, drone view

Spring 2020 has brought changes to everyone’s life, and our HEQ & LCON teams are no exception. While minding safety and health concerns, we have been hard at work designing, installing and repairing landscapes and hardscapes on campus. LCON (Landscape Construction) has hired a new Landscape Supervisor (Glen Conrad ’91) to direct construction and installation operations and provide design/maintenance input. LCON has created an in-house Irrigation Team, moving one of our SSC Irrigation Leads over to LCON as Irrigation Supervisor (Luis Guardado-Rivera ’11). The final new addition is adding Landscape Designer/Planner (Shannon Valkovich ‘20) to our Project Management Team, to help with output and review of plans and estimates.

HEQ (Heavy Equipment) has been pouring concrete on Deferred Maintenance projects where sidewalks need to be repaired or replaced. A large area has already been replaced by Evans Library with more scheduled this summer. We are also working on a new parking lot and sidewalk where the Old State Chemistry Building was. The building has been removed but historic pieces have been preserved and are being designed into a landscape project.

LCON has been busy with Deferred Maintenance projects. The Purchasing and Stores building is currently getting an irrigation and turf renovation, as well as a front planting bed makeover and irrigation conversion. The raised beds at Mechanical Engineering have gotten a landscape makeover, as have several areas along Military Walk. LCON continues to work on tree restoration and replacements along New Main, including drainage solutions that will help the health of the trees.

Our Project Management Team is overseeing a couple of large projects performed by subcontractors. Two more turf panel renovations at Reed Arena have just been completed, and a LARGE turf renovation has started along George Bush Drive between Bizzell and The Music Activities Center. They are also orchestrating some detailed, but smaller projects that are dear to most Aggies hearts. One project was the relocation of Ranger’s grave (Earl Rudders dog) to a new resting location beside the Earl Rudder statue. A second is the creation of a small memorial plaza at the edge of Haney Drill Field, to honor Joe T. Haney and the Fightin’ Texas Aggie Band. Finally, a student driven project at the Bonfire Memorial has been completed, allowing for the addition of 39 new trees on the perimeter of the Bonfire Memorial site. These trees are intended to act as a buffer, and help preserve the solitude of Bonfire, as the area around it starts to develop and fill with other buildings. Despite these strange times of uncertainty, our team is grateful to continue working and be a part of projects that will improve the campus for years to come. While it is sometimes nice, and productive, not to have the students and faculty to contend with, we are looking forward to the time when they come back and we can return to some sense of normality. Whatever that is!

submitted by Mike Teal, PLA, Grounds Manager HEQ/LCON

and Shannon Valkovich, Landscape Designer

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