IN THIS SEGMENT, WE TAKE YOU ON A PHOTOGRAPHIC “RIDE ALONG” OF A TYPICAL DAY HERE AT DL HOWELL WHERE THE FIELD AND OFFICE BECOME ONE.. 3, 2, 1….go!
4 SITE VISITS
22 PHONE CALLS
2 ZONING EMERGENCIES
2 WAWA STOPS
Happens every time…the week right before a holiday is ALWAYS crazy. Not sure why, but it just is. More importantly, how did I allow my company newsletter obligation to fall on one of those weeks? Can’t answer that but I assure you it won’t happen again! With that said, and paper still flying here in the office, I’ve decided to just photo-document a recent day at DL Howell. Hmmm…how about Thursday – enjoy the photos!
SITE VISIT 1: STORMWATER OVERSIGHT BAILEY STATION
Historic…..oversee one of the last remaining on-lot seepage beds being constructed at the Bailey Station Subdivision.
Aside: The Bailey Station Subdivision started the approvals process in 2003. Located in Thorndale, PA, it consists of over 400 single family homes and townhouses, has taken over a decade and a half to complete and throughout this subdivision’s “Construction life” it has survived one Great Recession and a multitude of PADEP regulation changes mostly associated with the Federal NPDES Program.
SITE VISIT 2: STORMWATER OVERSIGHT DOWLIN FORGE STATION
Oversee construction of underground seepage bed at Dowlin Forge Station Subdivision. Dowlin Forge Station is located in East Brandywine Township and consists of 200+ townhouse and single-family homes. D.L. Howell is responsible for providing the required stormwater management facility oversight as mandated by the Federal NPDES Permit requirements. No oversight, no NPDES Permit termination…
More Check Subgrade… More Check Stone… More Check Pipe… Ahh…you get the picture…
RETURN MORE EMAILS, PHONE CALLS, ETC…
ZONING EMERGENCY 1:
From field and in between site inspections, work with Client and other land use consultants to save a Chester County Micro-Brewery (that will remain nameless) from dying a slow, painful zoning death… In our business, timing is everything. Sometimes, coordination with and responses to Municipal officials need to happen quickly no matter where you are to keep a project alive. Frankly, this pace is the part I love most about this job….
SITE VISIT 3: SIGHT DISTANCE CHECK SINCLAIR SPRINGS
Sinclair Springs is a 26-acre site located just south of the Borough of Kennett Square. The project is currently under construction and proposes 79 townhouse units. With the construction of the two main entrances to the development complete, DL Howell was asked to confirm that site distance and site triangle calculations meet code. Mission accomplished, the site is code compliant with the removal and relocation of two small bushes…
WAWA STOP NUMBER TWO… COFFEE AGAIN
ZONING EMERGENCY 2:
Coordinate with Municipal zoning officials to, hopefully, keep plans for a community pool moving forward. This one involves a local sports facility and their plans to implement a new pool to be used a part of their 2018 summer recreation program. How quickly can a pool be built?? Facing several zoning hurdles, this one needs immediate attention…Step 1, get a meeting with the Municipality to discuss…
SITE VISIT 4: POOR SOIL ISSUES – PEMBERTON
The “Pemberton” development consists of 82 planned townhouse units and is located in northern New Garden Township. DL Howell was asked to advise on the possibility of changing drainage patterns in light of a small area of poorly draining soils on site….
RETURN THE LAST OF EMAILS, PHONE CALLS FOR THE DAY…
D.L. Howell & Associates, Inc. was contracted by Francis Iacobucci Properties, LLC to provide civil engineering services for this residential project in the heart of West Chester Borough. The project is for the construction of 5 single-family attached luxury carriage homes on a site that was formerly the residence of Claude Raines located at 400 South Church Street. D. L. Howell worked closely with Fran Iacobucci and his professional design team including; Frone Crawford, legal counselor, and Tom Bello, architect, to refine the site layout and architectural renderings after review and approval from the Planning Commission and Borough Council. The project started with involvement from the neighborhood association who reviewed the conceptual design.
The neighbors’ concerns promoted the development of a façade easement to protect the existing manor home. The new development focused on preservation of some existing features including; a stone retaining wall, brick sidewalks, and gated entry. These were used to create an entry into a central courtyard between the existing manor home and new carriage homes. The overall project resulted in a total of 5 new units with 2-car garages, and private driveway access to South Church Street. The existing manor home is also included and has a 2-car garage with access onto Dean Street. The entire community is furnished with extensive landscaping and privacy fence along the perimeter. It is also connected to public utilities and has a large underground stormwater infiltration and detention facility.
Construction for the project started in December of 2017 and is expected for completion by December of 2018. D.L. Howell is privileged to be considered as part of the design team with Francis Iacobucci Properties, LLC and looks forward to another successful project.
Construction continues at the Bentley Homes new Pemberton Community in New Garden Township. After beginning construction early last year, Phase 1 is nearly halfway completed. D.L. Howell has been with this project from the beginning working through the subdivision process and obtaining all necessary approvals. Resting on over 20 acres and surrounded by scenic countryside, Pemberton consists of 86 luxury townhouses currently listed to start in the mid 200’s. The site is conveniently located along Pemberton Road, it’s just minutes from downtown Kennett Square and Longwood Gardens with easy access to Route 1.
As D.L.Howell and Associates continues to advance our drone program, we find more and more ways to utilize the data we acquire when we fly a site. The software we use gives us more than just a high-resolution image, it also allows us to get approximate volumes of basins, topsoil stockpiles and cross section information for areas we choose.
Below are some examples of volumes, areas and cross-sections.
Getting the Volume of a Stockpile
In Photo 1 below, we see a site that was flown using the drone. Our goal is to get the volumes of the two stockpiles. In Photo 2, we show a color elevation map of the area. We can use this image to draw a border around the area of interest.
Photo 1: Topsoil stockpile
Photo 2: This view shows the elevation map of the stockpiles.
Using the Drone Deploy software, we can draw an area that we would like to get the volume of. After drawing a border around our area, we can see that this stockpile contains approximately 2,757.5 cubic yards of soil. We will also do the same for the smaller stockpile area to the left. The smaller stockpile area contains approximately 87.6 cubic yards of soil.
Using the Drone and Software to get Cross-section Information
Here is a sample site. We will be looking at the basin and the building.
In this example, we are using the same color elevation map to generate a quick cross-section of a basin. The line passing through the middle of the basin will show our cross-section information to the left.
We can also use the same elevation information to get the basic cross-section of a building. If we mark a cross-section line across the building we can get the width and height of the building as seen in the cross-section to the left.
Using the Drone and software to get Area Information
Here is a sample pond, we would like to find out the area at the waterline.
We can use the area command to trace around the waterline to get the area of the pond which is 0.948 acres.
In conclusion, using drones for engineering and surveying will Increase in 2018!
Using drones to gather information about a site for our company and our clients is becoming a very important part of our business. The data we can quickly collect and process flying a site with a drone has helped us during the site design phase of a project while at the same time assisting us in answering questions for clients about their projects.
If you are in need of any of these services for your project, contact D.L. Howell and Associates and ask to speak with one of our ever growing team of certified UAS Pilots.
We will be happy to fly your next project! (610) 918-9002
D.L.Howell Drone Pilot John Hubickey, always looking up!
Engineers are constantly being challenged with the task of trying to find cheaper alternatives for projects to save money for their clients. This presents a challenge because it is not always easy to find an alternative while maintaining the same characteristics that accommodate the standards and regulations that the project’s design must meet. Engineers are turning more and more to geosynthetics to help them accomplish these goals.
Geosynthetics are synthetic materials that are used in contact with soil, rock, or other geotechnical materials and have a wide range of forms and applications. The main categories that these geosynthetics fall into are geotextiles, geogrids, geonets, geomembranes, geosynthetic clay liners, geofoam, geocells, and geocomposites. Each of these has different applications and products that can be tailored to most jobs. They can be used to replace different raw materials such as cement, steel, rocks, and soil and can provide the same characteristics at a fraction of the price.
Filtration, drainage, separation, reinforcement, and protection are just a few areas where geosynthetics are becoming more prevalent. Some examples of uses include soil reinforcement structure, the separation between in-situ and imported soil to avoid mixing, filtration behind hydraulic structures, and erosion control blanket to protect the top of the slope and avoid erosion. Companies continue to test and research their geosynthetics to find more uses and to find ways to improve their characteristics to make them more favorable for designers.
The use of geosynthetics continue to grow as engineers become more familiar with them and as they become more viable options then what is normally commonplace. The cost benefits continue to make geosynthetics more popular and something that engineers will be turning more and more too. So, the next time you think there is no solution to your problem, remember that the solution may already be right under your feet.