LEE + RO Names Vice President Eric Lovering its Chief Engineer
CITY OF INDUSTRY, Calif. November 18, 2020 – LEE + RO, Inc., today announced that Vice President Eric Lovering, P.E., has been named the company’s chief engineer. In this new role, Lovering will apply his 20 years of engineering experience, strong leadership qualities, and problem-solving skills to helping solidify the company’s position as a leader in the design, engineering, and implementation of water, wastewater, and recycled water infrastructure projects throughout California.
Do read the full press release, please click HERE.
Veterans Day: How it came to be.
At 11 AM on November 11, 1918, the war between Germany and the Allied forces came to an end. The Great War, which had killed more than 15 million people, needed to be acknowledged and remembered. A year later, King George V of England proclaimed that November 11th would be Armistice Day. In 1938, Congress made November 11th an official federal holiday in the U.S., a day set aside to honor veterans of the Great War.
In 1953, Alvin J. King of Emporia, Kansas, proposed changing the name of the holiday to Veterans Day to recognize veterans from all wars and conflicts. Though King never served in the armed forces, he was motivated by the fact that his stepson, John Cooper, died in combat during World War II. The Emporia community raised money so King could go to Washington to meet with officials and push them to change the name. The following year, President Eisenhower signed the law changing the holiday name to Veterans Day.
What is the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day?
Memorial Day pays tribute to those who died in service to our country. It was established in 1868 to commemorate the more than 620,000 soldiers killed in the Civil War.
Veterans Day honors all who have served in the military.
Jhune, Madeleine, Eric, Greg, and Richard, all of us at LEE + RO thank you for your service.
NOV. 10th: Zaheer Shaikh Moderates CWEAs Webinar on Risk Assessment of SARS-CoV-2 for Wastewater Workers and Strategies for Mitigation
Since wastewater treatment workers are at an increased risk of infection and illness from water-based pathogens, treatment facilities need to evaluate how job tasks/activities influence risk. This session will engage academics, industry, and wastewater workers in an interactive discussion of risk assessment and strategies for mitigation.
To join the webinar, please click HERE.
Sunset Beach Sanitary District Broadway Sewer Siphon Replacement
The Sunset Beach Sanitary District, located in Orange County, has issued a contract to LEE + RO to provide the design services, construction management, and inspection services for this important District project. The Project entails replacing approximately 220 LF of existing 6-inch diameter cast iron sewer siphon crossing beneath Sunset Channel (60’ wide R/W) northwest of the existing bridge in Broadway (80’ wide R/W). The project goal is to proactively replace the 85-year old pipe, which is still in working condition, to provide greater pipe resistance to earthquake shaking.
The siphon was originally installed in 1935 under the Sunset Channel and was built using 6-inch cast iron pipe. The existing pipe has since been lined with a plastic liner in 1987. The District conducted an investigation in November 2019 to determine the location and depth of the steel sheet piling, and adjacent utilities as well as other features that will affect the replacement. Based on District’s experience and challenges with underwater investigation in the channel, any construction method directly affecting the waters, including open cut trenching in the channel crossing, has been removed from consideration. As such, various trenchless technologies have been selected herein for replacement of the Broadway Sewer Siphon.
In-Depth: The Rise of Impact Investment in the Water Sector
Why has impact investor interest in the water management space peaked recently? How can investors attain exposure to a sector that has historically been publicly funded? The answers to these questions are explained by analyzing several factors. Let’s first explore the predominant theories of water scarcity and investment. We will then assess how this investment thesis has been implemented in the past and present by intergovernmental organizations, index funds, and active asset managers. Lastly, we will share a few examples detailing the recent innovations and successes of water investors and companies that may offer us a glimpse at the future of the industry and its capital flows.
To read the Oxford Business Review article, please click HERE.
Electrical and I&C Veteran Kenneth Creager Joins LEE + RO as a Supervising Electrical Engineer.
Creager brings more than three decades of electrical and I&C experience in the water, wastewater, utilities, and petrochemical fields. His expertise includes power generation, substation design, power distribution, heavy industrial/facilities design, as well as automation and control systems design, power system analysis, master planning, and construction. To learn more, please click HERE.
LEE + RO hosts a tech session at CWEA's AC20 Conference: "The Future of Wastewater Treatment Plant Design."
We would like to thank Ian Bronswick of Delta Diablo, Rudy Guzman of the City of Oceanside, Garin Warren and Gary Lin from EBMUD, Rick Staggs and Cory Asher from the City of Fresno, and Ben Kikugawa of Tuolumne City for attending and providing some incredible insights as to their views about the future of WWTP design.
The discussion was centered around the following question: "Now that the activated sludge and secondary clarifier processes are over 100 years old, should municipalities and districts begin to think about embracing the newest technologies to achieve a higher quality effluent in a much more reliable way, and possibly at less cost to operate?"
LEE + RO Recognized by Engineering News-Record with the 2020 Best Water/Environment Project for the California Region
LEE + RO is honored to be recognized by Engineer News-Record for the design work on the Hyperion Secondary Effluent Pump Station for West Basin Municipal Water District (WBMWD). Due to the extremely small size footprint for the pump station, there were some doubts about the feasibility and constructability of the design. Working in partnership with WBMWD's general contractor PCL, the LEE + RO team tackled every challenge to successfully deliver an outstanding result.
Said CEO Dhiru Patel, "We're proud of the collaborative approach that our team brought to this project. These improvements to Hyperion will save millions of gallons of potable water each year, protect our coastal aquifers from seawater intrusion, provide an economical alternative to using potable water for industrial processes, and reduce the amount of (treated) sewage released into the ocean—all while making beneficial reuse of an underappreciated, untapped resource: Los Angeles’ raw wastewater."
LEE + RO at CWEA's 2020 Virtual Conference
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. October 15, 2020 – Aneal Shah, P.E., has joined the firm’s Walnut Creek office as a supervising engineer. Shah brings to the team more than 25 years of engineering and leadership experience in sustainable water. His professional areas of expertise include design and operational knowledge of activated sludge processes, membrane bioreactors, anaerobic digestion, advanced water treatment, and water re-use.
To learn more about Aneal, please click HERE.
LEE + RO's Zaheer Shaikh to Moderate the CWEA's Session "Engineering & Research: Operation & Management Practices"
On October 21st, LEE + RO's Zaheer Shaikh, PE, will be moderating one of the key sessions at CWEA's virtual conference. The featured speaker is Jean-Marc Petit, PE, the Director of Engineering and Technical Services at Central Contra Costa Sanitary District. He's a 30-year industry veteran who oversees the Planning and Development, Regulatory and Environmental Compliance, and Capital Projects divisions for the District.
LEE + RO is proud to be the PURE WATER PLUS sponsor of CWEA's virtual conference.
LEE + RO is the CWEA PURE WATER PLUS Sponsor
LEE + RO is proud to be the PURE WATER PLUS sponsor of CWEA’s first virtual conference from October 19-22. As fellow Californians, we understand the challenges that we’re all dealing with during this pandemic. We also know how important it is to ensure that you and your team are delivering safe and secure water to your communities.
We hope that you are planning on attending. And if you are, we’d love to schedule a chat on Zoom to learn about your current challenges and explore how we can assist you and your team during these difficult times. We’ll even treat you to a cup of Starbucks coffee!
To schedule your 1-on-1 Zoom call, please email our VP of Marketing, Rick Liskow, at email@example.com.
LEE + RO Launches LinkedIn Recruiting Campaign
LEE + RO today launched its "Make LEE + RO Your Choice" recruiting campaign on LinkedIn. The campaign is focused on its employees and why they chose to come to the company to either start their careers or to make the next move in their established careers. The fact is they're all looking for the same thing: a place where they can have the greatest impact.
The idea for the campaign came from the many interactions that company President Charles Ro had with a lot of the employees. "Our employees are the reason for our success and our ability to take the company to the next level. And we’re looking for people just like them: passionate professionals who will help move all of us and the great work we do forward."
Water Infrastructure Veteran Eric Magee Joins LEE +RO
Eric Magee, PE MBA, has joined LEE + RO as a supervising engineer. He’s an established civil engineer and a certified Envision Sustainability Professional. He brings more than two decades of experience and a passion for solving some of the most complex water infrastructure challenges facing California. Eric has extensive experience in water, wastewater, and recycled water engineering. To learn more about Eric, please click HERE .
LEE + RO Donates to California Food Banks Struggling to Meet Increased Demand Due to COVID-19 Pandemic
LEE + RO has made donations to four food banks representing Northern, Central and Southern California. The recipients of $1,000 each are the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, The Jacobs and Cushman San Diego Food Bank, Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services, and the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano.
“Our company has a commitment to providing water security for Californians for generations,” said LEE + RO President Charles Ro. “But with so many Americans struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic, we saw our mission reflected perfectly in this first focus on the urgent issue of food insecurity.”
With roughly 30 million Americans unemployed and 54 million facing hunger – including more than 18 million children – every community in the United States is at risk.
Fortunately, everyone can make a difference in the way that’s most meaningful for them:
Riverside Regional Water Quality Control Plant Tequesquite Landfill Blowers Rehabilitation Project
The City has contracted with LEE + RO to replace the three-existing single-stage rotary sliding vane gas compressors with a new centrifugal blower system with two blowers. LEE + RO’s scope of work covers the demolition of the existing compressor system, design of the new VFD driven blower system, including an overhead canopy structure, condensate management, electrical, instrumentation and controls, and permitting assistance.
The City of Riverside is the owner and operator of the now closed Tequesquite Landfill. In 1988, a landfill gas collection system was installed to comply with regulatory requirements. Landfill gas was conditioned and compressed utilizing three rotary sliding vane compressors and transported via pipeline to the Co-Generation Facility at the City’s Regional Water Quality Control Plant (RWQCP). Gas strength and quality degraded over time and a gas flare was installed onsite to flare the landfill gas. In 2019, an ultra-low emission flare was installed to replace the original flare. However, the existing compressors are improperly sized for the new flare, generating inadequate vacuum to efficiently pull the landfill gas from the collection wells at the Tequesquite Landfill’s collection head and convey it to the new flare.
Secondary Effluent Line Replacement and Davis St. Manhole Replacement
The City of San Leandro has issued a contract to LEE + RO to provide engineering services for a project to rehabilitate the 36”diameter Secondary Effluent (SE) line at the City’s Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP), replace the sanitary sewer junction structure adjacent to the WPCP, and rehabilitate the existing 30” diameter and 33” diameter sanitary sewer pipes entering the plant from the junction structure. LEE + RO will provide the preliminary design, final design, bid phase and engineering support services during construction. Final design documents will be provided within 5 months of the notice to proceed. Project design elements include:
Treatment Plant 1Water System Hydraulic Modeling Services
Central Contra Costa Sanitary District has contracted LEE + RO to perform hydraulic modeling of the 1Water (1W) system at their 54 MGD treatment plant. A computer-based model of the plant’s 1W system will be created in InfoWater and steady-state simulations of the existing system will be performed to analyze different demand scenarios such as Average Day, Maximum Day, and Peak Hour flows. Field testing will be performed to record flow and pressure measurements with the temporary flow and pressure loggers and the data will be used to calibrate the model.
Ely Booster Station Hazard Mitigation Project
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) awarded a $2.3 million Hazard Mitigation Grant to Sonoma County Water Agency (Sonoma Water) to provide Ely Booster Station protection against a 500-year flood and 7.0 magnitude earthquake. Ely Booster Station is located within 5 miles of the Rodgers Creek Fault and sits in a 100-year floodplain, and local assessments identified issues that threaten its reliability during a flood or a seismic event. Historically, the station has been inundated by floodwater during the rainy season, where extreme elevations of water threatened operability and raised safety concerns for onsite personnel.
Sonoma Water has contracted with LEE + RO to provide engineering design services for the improvements to Sonoma Water's Ely Booster Station. The result will be a long term, independent solution to the risks posed by flood and earthquake events. These actions will effectively provide protection against a 500-year flood event and a magnitude 7.0 earthquake and completion of the project will mitigate the risk of Sonoma County residents losing this precious water resource in the event of a disaster.
The engineering design services will include sealing and elevating electrical appurtenances above the 500-year floodplain, replacing the pump motor housing structures and anchoring equipment critical to the operation of the booster station. The project will also replace the existing medium voltage switchgear with a new switchgear, complete with new motor starters. The switchgear feeds two 500-hp pumps.
Treatment Plant Piping Renovations Phase 10
LEE + RO has been awarded a project to design various mechanical and electrical improvements throughout the Central Contra Costa Sanitary District’s 54 MGD treatment plant. The scope of work includes:
Rehabilitation and Betterment CIP: Electrical Upgrades
The Solano Irrigation District owns and operates approximately 200 agricultural electrical facilities that power pumps and wells at isolated locations throughout the District’s service area. As part of the first phase of improvements, the District selected some facilities to upgrade aging electrical equipment, provide shelter from the elements for the electrical equipment, and harden the sites against tampering, theft, and vandalism.
The project includes developing standard details for installing or upgrading electrical infrastructure and preparing plans and specifications for upgrading 13 existing electrical facilities, including permitting and coordinating with PG&E. In addition to the electrical improvement designs, LEE + RO will prepare design plans for necessary civil improvements, including grading, access roads and fencing, structures and foundations for panels and shade structures.
Pressure Reducing Station Upgrades for the City of San Diego
Dokken Engineering has partnered with LEE + RO to provide the civil, structural (vault sizing and layout), mechanical, electrical and I+C engineering work for the upgrades to 11 of the City of San Diego’s pressure reducing stations at various locations within the City and to develop a Radio Repeating Station. The project consists of the design and construction of replacement pressure reducing stations, complete with supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) instrumentation, water main removal or abandonment and replacement, appurtenances, revegetation of the existing parkway areas, pavement resurfacing, curbs, gutters and sidewalks.
LEE + RO will prepare the civil, mechanical, structural, electrical and I&C plans for the pressure reducing stations, including piping in the streets and paving repairs. In addition to the design services, LEE + RO will also provide bid phase services and engineering support services during construction.
Seal Beach Pump Station Replacement
LEE + RO has been awarded a contract by the Orange County Sanitation District (OCSD) to replace the existing 50-year old Seal Beach Pump Station with a new 34 MGD capacity pump station. The new Seal Beach Pump Station will feature a deeper wet well to facilitate the bypassing and eventual decommissioning and demolition of the upstream Westside Pump Station. The new Seal Beach Pump Station, located on the same site as the existing Seal Beach Pump Station, will meet current and future flow demands to year 2040. Due to a contaminated groundwater plume in the vicinity of the project, there is no allowance for water table drawdown or dewatering of the approximately 50-foot deep excavation.
The site layout is tightly constrained by the Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach, large arterial roads, and the existing Seal Beach Pump Station that must remain operational throughout construction. The new $45 million replacement pump station includes demolition, civil, mechanical, structural, architectural, HVAC, electrical, instrumentation and control systems design, site improvements including above ground buildings, underground vaults, manholes, new gravity sewer and force main segments, odor control, facilities for drainage, paving, landscaping and irrigation, perimeter walls and security, storm drains and other utilities, in addition to temporary facilities as required to maintain operation of the pump station during construction.
Potable Water Steel Reservoir Seismic Retrofits
Moulton Niguel Water District (MNWD) owns and operates a total of 38 reservoirs as part of their potable and recycled water distribution systems. Of the 38 reservoirs, 32 are above grade/partially buried steel tanks with 26 tanks in the potable water system and 6 tanks in the recycled water system. An assessment study completed for the District in 2015 concluded that 18 of the 26 steel potable water reservoirs require one or more of the following improvements to comply with current seismic codes and standards:
In October 2019, the District engaged LEE + RO to provide the seismic retrofit designs for the 18 potable water steel reservoirs. The scope of work includes preliminary and final design; preparation of construction documents and construction cost estimates; FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant requirements research and implementing procurement requirements into the construction documents; bid phase support; and construction phase engineering support services.
LEE + RO reviewed the structural calculations from the 2015 assessment study for one of the tanks and determined that tank does not require the concrete ring wall footing retrofits recommended in the study. The District requested that LEE + RO conduct a structural analysis on each of the other seven tanks that the assessment study recommended retrofitting the ring wall footings. This could potentially result in substantial savings to the District from not having to drain each of these tanks and take them out of service in addition to the cost of the retrofit work itself.
Sewer Lift Stations Nos. 9 & 11, Sewer Collection and Water Distribution System Improvements
The City of Calexico contracted with LEE + RO to provide engineering and design services necessary to increase the capacities and upgrade existing Lift Station No. 9 and Lift Station No. 11 and replace associated force mains and collection system gravity sewers, in addition to replacing domestic water pipelines to accommodate additional development in the area.
The project consists of the following items:
RP-4 Influent Screen Replacement Project - Stanek Constructors, Inc.
LEE + RO, as design engineer, partnered with Stanek Constructors to replace the existing influent screens at the Inland Empire Utilities Agency’s (IEUA) Reclamation Plant 4 (RP-4) with more reliable and efficient screens. This $2 million design-build project is intended to replace the two existing perforated plate fine screens with two new ¼” multi-rake bar screens. IEUA pre-negotiated and selected multi-rake bar screens from Duperon Corporation
LEE + RO’s scope of services includes:
Regional Treatment Plant MCC UpgradesThe South Orange County Wastewater Authority's (SOCWA) Regional Treatment Plant (RTP) was constructed in 1982 and although there have been a series of upgrade projects over the last 20 years, much of the electrical system remains as originally installed in 1982.
Calexico WWTP Upgrading and Expansion
The City of Calexico owns and operates a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) with a permitted capacity of 4.3 MGD. The existing WWTP consists of two treatment plants; the 2.5 MGD Plant 1 conventional activated sludge plant, and the 1.8 MGD Plant 2 aerated lagoons.
In December of 2017, LEE+RO was contracted by the City of Calexico to prepare a WWTP Master Plan to (1) determine the future wastewater treatment capacity for the next 10 to 20 years based on the current population trends and development projections; (2) perform a condition assessment and determine the life expectancy of the existing process units; (3) identify the unit processes with the lowest lifecycle costs; and (4) make recommendations for the WWTP capital improvements.
In March 2019, the City contracted with LEE + RO to provide the engineering and designs to implement the recommendations from the Master Plan. The upgraded WWTP will be capable of treating an average dry weather flow of 5.8 MGD and a peak wet weather flow of 11.6 MGD and will be capable of producing an effluent with low ammonia concentrations (i.e. less than 5 mg/l) in compliance with potentially reduced future regulatory requirements. LEE + RO’s design incorporates extended aeration basin technology to simultaneously treat the wastewater and reduce effluent ammonia concentrations.
The upgrades and improvements to the WWTP include:
Descanso Gardens (Gardens) is a world-renowned botanical and horticultural garden located just north of the City of Los Angeles. The Gardens use on-site sewer collection, treatment, and disposal systems to treat the wastewater generated by on-site facilities. In 2012, they replaced their existing septic tank and leach field. In 2016, the system began experiencing capacity issues and seepage pit structure failures that resulted in untreated wastewater inundating the seepage pits forcing the Gardens to collect and haul away approximately 6,000 gallons per day of wastewater. John Robinson Consulting (JRC), contracted with LEE + RO to replace the 2012 system.
LEE + RO’s engineering and design services will center around a new membrane bioreactor (MBR) technology, which will produce Title 22-compliant tertiary (recycled water) effluent within a compact, modular footprint. In addition to restoring on-site treatment capacity, the new packaged MBR system will provide the Gardens with the opportunity to utilize the recycled water to irrigate the facility, thereby reducing the Gardens' operating costs and the facility's carbon footprint. The improvements will include: