Category Archives: Pare Office News

Central Bridge Replacement, Barrington, RI – VIDEO

Pare Corporation recently worked with Sean McVeigh Media to capture video footage of a current construction project using an aerial video drone. It was an exciting day for Pare to witness the opportunities this new technology can provide for viewing and sharing current and completed projects.

Project details are located in the video description on Pare’s YouTube Channel.

And The Winner Is…..

“Back to Nature” by Allen Orsi, P.E., a Managing Engineer in Pare’s Geotechnical Division, is the winner of the 5th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest. This year, Pare employees were asked to submit a photo inspired by the Earth Day 2015 theme: Take a stand, so that together we can show the world a new direction. It’s our turn to lead. Our world leaders will follow.

The 2015 photo contest was incredibly close. There was a tie between photos for most of the week, but in the end, “Back to Nature” won by two votes!

Photo 2

The Bartlet Pond Dam, originally constructed in 1814, was a barrier to the natural ecology of the Wekepeke Brook for nearly 200 years. During that time, the presence of the dam resulted in increased water temperatures, lower Dissolved Oxygen, disconnected environments, and other environmental detriments. In 2014, the dam was removed, restoring the area to a natural stream channel and allowing for the natural healing of the ecosystem to begin, which will benefit both the Wekepeke as well as the Nashua River, located shortly downstream. In recognition of this achievement, state and local officials gathered to celebrate the project and other environmental initiatives being supported financially through programs being offered by EOEEA. Attendance at the event demonstrated the state’s commitment and progress in restoring our natural environment; the new growth embodies the power of nature to overcome man’s interference in the cycle of nature.

Congratulations to our winner, Allen Orsi. Allen will receive a gift card to Briggs Garden & Home.

You can check out the rest of the photo entries here.

A special thanks to all who contributed to this year’s Earth Day Photo Contest. This year’s entrants were:

#1 Andrew Chagnon – Synthetic Turf Field, Marshfield
#2 Allen Orsi – Back to Nature
#3 Dave Easterbrooks – Save the Bay Swim
#4  Marc Weller – Eco-Machine
#5 Lauren Hastings – Tread Lightly
#6  Tim Thies – S-s-s-s-s-s-springtime Buddies
#7  Dave McCombs – Solitude
#8 Nick Romano – Koi Pond
#9  Victoria Howland – Living Machine
#10  Mel Hebert – Aurora Borealis
#11  Brandon Blanchard – Do You Know Where Your Food Comes From?
#12  Cari Orsi – Living Green
#13 Scott Lindgren –  Follow us, together we will lead.

Pare’s 5th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest – Vote Here

It’s that time of year!  Photo entries for Pare’s 5th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest are posted below.

This year, Earth Day’s challenge is to: Take a stand, so that together we can show the world a new direction. It’s our turn to lead. Our world leaders will follow. The request to redefine what progress looks like prompted our photo contest challenge. Pare staff was invited to submit photos with a short description that demonstrate what progress means to them; how we are leading; and how we can do better.

Please enjoy the following photos, submitted by Pare’s staff, and vote using the poll located at the bottom of this post. The winner of the 2015 Earth Day Photo Contest will win a $25 Gift Certificate to Brigg’s Garden & Home. Voting will close Tuesday, April 28th.

Photo 11. “Synthetic Turf Field, Marshfield”

Is this just a field…???….
This is the reduction of runoff
This is promoting infiltration of stormwater
This is the elimination of the application of pesticides, nutrients, and herbicides
This is the elimination of geese waste
This is stabilization of exposed soil from overuse, which is susceptible to erosion due to wind and runoff
This is a facility that can handle three times the use as the one it replaced, eliminating the need for development elsewhere
Is this just a field…???….
This is progress.

Photo 2
2. “Back to Nature”

The Bartlet Pond Dam, originally constructed in 1814, was a barrier to the natural ecology of the Wekepeke Brook for nearly 200 years. During that time, the presence of the dam resulted in increased water temperatures, lower Dissolved Oxygen, disconnected environments, and other environmental detriments. In 2014, the dam was removed, restoring the area to a natural stream channel and allowing for the natural healing of the ecosystem to begin, which will benefit both the Wekepeke as well as the Nashua River, located shortly downstream. In recognition of this achievement, state and local officials gathered to celebrate the project and other environmental initiatives being supported financially through programs being offered by EOEEA. Attendance at the event demonstrated the state’s commitment and progress in restoring our natural environment; the new growth embodies the power of nature to overcome man’s interference in the cycle of nature.

Photo 3
3. “Save the Bay Swim”

Earth Day is always a timely reminder about our need to be good stewards to Mother Earth – we only get to enjoy her for a short time (relatively speaking) before making way for the next generations. And where we can, it’s gratifying to see us turn back the clock and create a cleaner and healthier planet than the one that existed when we were born. Narragansett Bay is a good example of this, where the work of the Narragansett Bay Commission and non-profit organizations like Save the Bay have resulted in dramatically cleaner, healthier water. Considering the amount of bay water I swallowed during last summer’s Save the Bay Swim from Newport to Jamestown, I am personally thankful for the efforts of so many good stewards!

Photo 4 4. “Eco-Machine”

During a recent visit to the University of Vermont, I was shown a former students Master’s degree project: the “Eco-Machine”, which is essentially a small wastewater treatment facility containing aquatic life that collects and treats all of the wastewater in a large building located on campus. The buildings wastewater is collected and treated by the Eco-Machine through six primary steps: primary settling, closed aerobic reactors, nutrient uptake through open aquatic vessels, wetlands, bio particulate filtration, and UV disinfection. While the finished water is not intended for drinking, it is reused as all the water for flushing the toilets in the building. It has been reported that the finished water discharged from the Eco-Machine is cleaner than the outflow from Burlington’s sewage treatment plant that discharges into Lake Champlain. The Eco-Machine is an excellent example of redefining what progress looks like – environmentally sustainable, cost effective wastewater treatment system alternatives that provide similar or better treatment efficiency compared to multi-million dollar facilities that consume enormous amounts of energy.

Photo 55. “Tread Lightly”

The tiny Woodland Jumping Mouse can propel itself up to 6 feet in one leap! While these elusive little critters live throughout the northeast, it is rare to ever see one as they silently hop through pine forests, feeding on fungi and insects.

With today’s fast paced lifestyle full of digital distractions, it is more important than ever to lead our children to connect with the natural world. Fostering an appreciation for the diversity, complexity and fragility of our ecosystems will help shape the next generation to live consciously and tread lightly.

Photo 66. “S-s-s-s-s-s-s-springtime buddies”

Our leaders are like the tail of a snake, they don’t always point in the direction of the head, but give them time and they will arrive at the same place. If we show our leaders the way, they may not look like they’re going to in the right direction, but they will eventually get there.

Photo 77. “Solitude”

We lead by example. By following square foot gardening techniques, a relatively small area with not a lot of effort can produce a surprisingly bountiful crop of fresh vegetables. This garden is ready for a spring preparation and can also be a welcome visual addition to the rural scenery.

Photo 88. “Koi Pond”

A backyard koi pond brings nature to the city. The sound of the water filters out the noise pollution of the busy city and provides a relaxing outdoor recreational space.

Photo 99. “Living Machine”

Pictured above is the modern day wastewater treatment plant: the Living Machine. Wastewater is treated through a series of 7 steps (settling, equalization, anoxic tanks, constructed wetlands, aerated lagoons, sand filter, and dispersal field) and without the use of any chemicals. The aerated lagoon phase is pictured in the photo and consists of 4 cells each about 10 feet deep. Wastewater enters the lagoons and is converted to ammonia and other harmless base elements by the plants, fungi, and microorganisms that thrive within the lagoons. Once wastewater passes through the lagoons, it is piped to a sand filter for final particulate removal before being released back into the ground. The Living Machine truly goes back to the basics and treats our “waste” as a precious resource.

Photo 10

10. “Aurora Borealis”

Auroras occur in both hemispheres, and the aurora in the northern hemisphere is called the aurora borealis, or northern lights. The aurora borealis is most often seen during the months of September, October, March, and April.

One myth says that the aurora borealis is telling stories of what happened in the past and what will happen in the future.

Photo 11

11. “Do You Know Where Your Food Comes From?”

Every day, more and more people can say that they do. Today, farmer’s markets are an important part of many of our communities, giving us access to healthy, locally grown food and a way of connecting to the farmers and purveyors that produce it. They have even helped solve the problem of “urban food deserts” that plague many of our largest cities, neighborhoods and other areas where people lack reasonable access to fresh healthy food – something most of us take for granted. More information on urban food deserts from the United States Department of Agriculture can be found here.

Photo 12
12. “Living Green”

We can all lead by example and make living green a part of our lives. These good examples will turn into the average way of living. For example, bringing your own bags to the grocery store was pretty much unheard of when I was a child going to the store with my parents. Today I fairly consistently use my own bags and I see a lot of others doing it too. The other day when I forgot my bags at home and went to check out, my child actually noticed the lack of bags and asked, “where are our bags?”. It has become such a normal activity of shopping that even at a young age children pick up on what we do in our life and will make it a part of their normal activities when they grow up. Something that seems like we need to put so much effort into now will become part of our life’s in the future without effort. Every effort we make to lead now results in change for the future.

Photo 1313. “Follow us, together we will lead”

It is through our children and the younger generation that we are being shown the importance of environmental stewardship. Respecting the environment and the planet we live on so that it will be possible for future generations to enjoy life and the wonders that our planet has to give is now at the forefront of the conversation. They are the real leaders of the future.

Please submit your vote below. Thank you!

Snow Loading and Roof Collapse Safety

By Mike Rongione, Managing Structural Engineer at Pare

22

Scenic icicles and snow-capped rooftops can be striking and charming, but their elegant beauty can be cause for concern. Snow can possess significant weight and becomes heavier when combined with rain, ice and sleet. Ice and snow on roofs are often forgotten until a leak develops – or worse.

With the numerous snowstorms we have experienced recently, excessive ice and snow loads can overload a building’s structural members and sometimes even cause roof collapse. Drifting snow conditions can also cause excessive snow loads. Generally, these drifts are common at pitched roofs, roof valleys, lower levels of multilevel roof areas, and on roofs adjacent to projections. Snow drifts are usually the result of wind-blown snow piling up in discrete areas. Larger roofs are more prone to excessive snow drifting because there is more snow available to form the drifts.

As snow might continue to accumulate or heavy rains and melting could add to the weight on buildings and houses, you need to be aware of the potential hazards and important safety measures you can take. If you suspect imminent roof failure, evacuate the building and call 911.

THINGS TO LOOK FOR

Generally, buildings will show signs of distress prior to roof collapse. The following are some warning signs of roof distress that should be recognized:

  • Loud popping, cracking and creaking sounds from the structure.
  • Sagging ceiling tiles.
  • Severe roof leaks indicating potential torn roof membranes and/or ice damming.
  • Cracked or split wood members.
  • Bends or ripples in metal supports.
  • Cracks in walls or masonry.
  • New cracks in wall or ceiling drywall/plaster.
  • Sprinkler heads pushed down below ceiling tiles.
  • Water ponding in areas it never did before.
  • Doors that pop open.
  • Doors or windows that are difficult or no longer can be opened/closed.
  • Bowed utility pipes or conduit attached at ceiling.
  • Cracks in welds of steel construction.
  • Sheared off screws from steel frames.
  • Sagging roof members including steel bar joists, metal decking, wood rafters, wood trusses and plywood sheathing – visually deformed.

REMOVING SNOW FROM ROOFS

When snow removal is necessary, remember that unsafe procedures may cause a collapse and injuries. Anyone working on a roof must have adequate fall protection and keep in mind that workers and others nearby can be injured by snow or ice being dumped from a roof.
Once it has been determined that the snow must be removed, there are several options for snow removal:

  • Consider hiring insured professionals to do the job.
  • Be aware of large accumulations of snow build-up or snowdrifts on your roofs.
  • If snow can be removed with the use of a snow rake (available at most hardware stores), do so.
  • Try to avoid working from ladders, as ladder rungs tend to ice up. Snow and ice collect on boot soles and metal ladders.
  • Use caution when removing snow off roofs to avoid damage to roof membranes or shingles. Use plastic shovels or wooden rakes to avoid damage. Consider leaving a few inches of snow on the roof instead of scraping the roof clean.
  • Flat roofs can be shoveled clear, but only if it is determined that the roof is safe to stand on. Start from the edge and work your way towards the center of the roof. Do not pile snow in local areas.
  • Remove snow evenly from both sides to avoid unbalanced roof loading conditions.
  • Flat roof drainage systems should be kept clear to minimize the risk of excess roof ponding in the event of subsequent heavy rainfall or melting.
  • Exercise care when on the roof to avoid potentially dangerous falls.
  • Large icicles can form on roof overhangs, but do not necessarily mean ice damming is occurring. Icicles overhanging doorways and walkways can be dangerous and should be carefully removed.

Professional structural engineers can assist with building assessments if you believe your structure is at risk.  Local building officials and your local fire department are also familiar with snow-loaded roofs and the signs of a potentially overloaded structure.  If you have concerns, they can answer many of your questions before taking the next step and hiring a professional.

Engineer’s Week 2015

Engineer’s Week 2015 is currently underway! Here at Pare, we celebrate Engineer’s Week with a special luncheon for the dozens of Pare engineers who volunteer their time and show their passion for the profession through public outreach or by visiting the classrooms of secondary and higher-education students to introduce them to potential careers in engineering.

Many people are not aware of the importance civil engineering plays in their daily routine—whether it is crossing a bridge in their car or opening a faucet to pour a glass of clean, potable water. The below video, published by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), explains civil engineering to those wondering what it is exactly that we do, and why it flies under the radar, or in the case of many civil engineering projects, under the ground.

Fresh Produce From the Farm to Your Work Desk

By Brandon Blanchard, Senior Project Environmental Engineer at Pare

Recently, several Pare employees enrolled in the Veggie Box program offered by Farm Fresh Rhode Island. Every week, Farm Fresh delivers boxes of fresh, local produce to our Lincoln, RI office and several other locations across the State. Each box includes a variety of fruit, vegetables, and herbs harvested from farms throughout Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.

The contents of the box change with the seasons to ensure that only the freshest produce is selected – you can taste the difference! A box earlier this summer included seasonal greens, such as Swiss chard and arugula, carrots, celery, several ears of corn, and large, juicy blueberries. A weekly newsletter identifies the farm from which each item was harvested and shares several recipe ideas to make using your produce easy.

Veggie Box(Only vegetables harvested at the peak of their freshness make it into the box)

Veggie Box is a great way to support area farms while ensuring that your family gets fresh, nutritious fruits and vegetables. Buying from local farmers helps preserve open space and means your food doesn’t travel as far to get to you. Farm Fresh schedules their drop-offs as efficiently as possible to minimize delivery trips throughout the State.

veggie 5Visit the Farm Fresh website or their Veggie Box page to learn more, including ways that you can enroll in the program. There are public drop-off locations all over Rhode Island, including some in your hometown!

Pare’s John Shevlin Travels to Williamsport to Cheer On Cumberland – VIDEO Update

CYBSL2Photo (Associated Press): Trey Bourque, of Cumberland, RI, celebrating after hitting a three-run homerun

Pare congratulates Cumberland American Little League on winning their first game at the Little League World Series. Cumberland made their signature comeback, winning 8-7, in the last inning against Tennessee on Saturday night. This win marks the furthest that New England’s team has advanced in the Little League World Series since 1996. John Shevlin, Senior Vice-President and Division Manager at Pare Corporation, is President of the Cumberland Youth Baseball/Softball League (CYBSL). Shevlin, a 25-year resident of Cumberland, RI, is celebrating his first year as CYBSL President in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, cheering on his team as they take on Chicago tonight at 8:00 PM EST. The game will air live on ESPN. For more highlights from Saturday’s game click here.

CYBSLPhoto (WJAR NBC 10): Cumberland American All-Stars in Williamsport, PA

**UPDATE**

After a terrific run, the Cumberland American All-Star Little League team fell one run short to Chicago (8-7) in last night’s game. Viewers were kept on the edge of their seat until the last at bat. However, what Cumberland lacked in runs was made up for in spirit, pride and sportsmanship thanks to a moving  post-game speech given by Cumberland Coach, Dave Belisle. To read more about the speech that garnered national attention click here.

Pare Receives Boys Town “Spirit of Youth” Award

For 19 years, Pare Corporation has provided gifts to each child living with a Boys Town foster family during the holiday season.  This year, Boys Town New England honored Pare with the 2014 “Spirit of Youth” award.

_DSC5231

On May 2nd, Pare was honored at Boys Town New England’s 2014 “Spirit of Youth Gala.”  The theme of the night, “Fly Away to Neverland,” recalled the magic of the Peter Pan story and highlighted the magic that takes place every day in this wonderful organization as it works with children and families.

One of the evening’s most magical moments involved the gala’s Youth and Family Speaker, Adam Charron, a former Boys Town New England foster child.  After Pare was presented with The Spirit of Youth Award, Adam took to the stage to share his experience as a former foster child and to express his gratitude to Boys Town New England.  Adam was among the first group of children to whom Pare provided gifts—almost two decades ago!  Knowing they would be reunited with Adam, Pare’s Deb Poulos and Mel Hebert, who initiated Pare’s gift-giving effort in 1996, tracked down and purchased the items from Adam’s original wish list and presented him with one more holiday surprise on stage.  Deb recalls,“there wasn’t a dry eye in the building.”

_DSC5423Pare representatives receive Spirit of Youth Award, presented by former Boys Town foster child, Adam Charron

Since 1996, Pare has provided holiday gifts for 531 children. Deb Poulos best summed up Pare’s commitment to Boys Town New England:

“I am so proud that everyone at Pare still shows as much enthusiasm as they did that first year. Sometimes we have seen names on the list that were there the year before, and we knew that child had not been reunited with his or her family or had not been adopted. We all took this to heart and always kept these children in our thoughts. It’s because of them, and children like them, that we continue to help Boys Town each Christmas.  We want them to experience joy on Christmas the way the rest of us do.  I couldn’t ask for a better group of co-workers.  They know how to come together and make things happen and get things done. We all have families of our own and the holiday season is so busy that it’s not always easy.  But this has become tradition for us. To us, this is our little Christmas miracle. We have bought gifts for 531 children. That’s 531 smiles and for us that will always be enough.”

_DSC5324Left to right: Pare’s Matt Bellisle, Sue Gravel, Collette Gagnon, and Mike Rongione

_DSC5295Left to Right: Pare’s April Lagace, Lauren Hastings, and Lindsey Machamer

Founded in 1917, Boys Town has been dedicated to providing abused, abandoned, and neglected children with a safe, supporting and caring environment where they can gain confidence and learn skills to succeed in life. The Boys Town Model of care is research-based and produces life-changing results for youth across the country.

_DSC5322Captain Hook also attended the Spirit of Youth Gala

If you are interested in contributing to this important organization, through a donation or as a volunteer, please visit the Boy’s Town New England webpage, and see how you can help.

 

Sprouting Boardwalk wins PARE’s 4th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest

“Sprouting Boardwalk” by Shane Driscoll wins the 4th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest. Check out his take on sustainable communities and how his photograph fits this year’s Green Cities theme.

“A sign that creating a sustainable community is easier than you think is observed in Sprouting Boardwalk photographed at Goddard Memorial State Park in Warwick, RI.  Mother Nature leaves hints of innovation throughout our daily lives; it is just a matter of discovering these hidden elements.  An organic planter lines the boardwalk in a decaying wooden structural element filled with wind-blown sand and just the right mixture of light and nutrients to support these budding spires of grass.”

Shane will receive a gift card to Chipotle, consistently regarded as one of the greenest restaurant chains. Not only do they source “food with integrity“, they are constructing new restaurants to USGBC LEED Platinum standards.

You can check out all of the entries here.

Special thanks to all who entered the contest this year. This year’s entrants were:

Photo 1: ”Sprouting Boardwalk” by Shane Driscoll

Photo 2: “Climbing to the Future” by Allen Orsi

Photo 3: “Settling Down in the Suburbs” by Lauren Hastings

Photo 4: “Cape Town” by Victoria Howland

Photo 5: “Piece of Nature” by Jay Gaudette

Photo 6: “High Line” by Brandon Blanchard

Photo 7: “Water Taxi” by Dave Easterbrooks

Photo 8: “Vegetation” by Cari Orsi

Photo 9: “Container Gardening” by Tim Thies

Photo 10: “A Walk on Wood” by Scott Lindgren

 

 

Voting Begins for PARE’s 4th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest

The entries are in for Pare Corporation’s 4th Annual Earth Day Photo Contest!

This year’s theme for Earth Day is Green Cities. We asked Pare employees to submit photographs and a brief summary of why they thought it best represented this theme. Like in year’s past, we received some great entries. Take a look below and choose your favorite!

 

#1 – Sprouting Boardwalk

Entry #1

A sign that creating a sustainable community is easier than you think is observed in “Sprouting Boardwalk” photographed at Goddard Memorial State Park in Warwick, RI.  Mother Nature leaves hints of innovation throughout our daily lives; it is just a matter of discovering these hidden elements.  An organic planter lines the boardwalk in a decaying wooden structural element filled with wind-blown sand and just the right mixture of light and nutrients to support these budding spires of grass.

#2 Climbing to the Future

Entry #2

As host of the 2013 USGBC Green Build Conference, the City of Philadelphia is a leader in the implementation and advancement of “green technology”. This photograph, taken at the foot of the iconic Philadelphia Art Museum steps, embodies the future of green initiative. While our generation has taken the first step to help future generations achieve this monumental design standard, there remains much work ahead to ensure that we as the human race continue to strive to reach our goal of a sustainable future.

 

 

#3 Settling Down in the Suburbs

Entry #3 Settling Down in the Suburbs

A city or town is only truly “green” when all its inhabitants are accounted for! I was lucky enough to witness this pair of Osprey building their nest only a short distance from a busy state highway in a suburb of Providence. Manmade platforms like the one pictured here allow these fish-eating birds of prey to thrive in developed coastal areas.

 

 #4 Cape Town

Entry #4 Cape Town

A city surrounded by mountains.

#5 Piece of Nature

 

Entry #5 Piece of NatureI took this photo in October on a hike in New Hampshire.  It is looking at Mt. Chicora from the middle sister mountain.  Getting people out into beautiful places like this is becoming more and more popular, and each time we bring a little piece of nature back with us that inspires us to make our cities better.

 

#6 High Line

Entry #4

What was once an abandoned elevated freight line is now one of Manhattan’s most loved new attractions: The High Line. Rather than demolishing the historic rail line, the City of New York preserved it, transforming it into a linear park complete with a walking path, landscape areas, food vendors and outdoor art displays. Great Cities like New York embrace their parks and green spaces as important public gathering spots. Green Cities do the same.

 #7 Water Taxi

No. 7 Water Taxi
Our cities and urban centers offer a multitude of opportunities for living, working, and playing. More and more they also offer a multitude of sustainable transportation options, from subways and light rail to zip cars, bike share, and waterborne taxis and ferries.

 

 #8 Vegetation

No. 8 Vegetation

This photo seems to suggest vegetation can grow just about anywhere naturally, city or country.  However, it also reminds us that this is the type of vegetation that we will be left with if we don’t take the time to preserve the natural open spaces of the natural landscapes and provide ample room for other flora to grow and flourish.

#9 Container Gardening

Entry #3

 

Many people think living in a city means you can’t enjoy gardening or growing your own food. Container gardens can allow you to grow your own vegetables in a relatively small footprint, which can make City living both more attractive and more sustainable.

 

 

Celery Haiku

Celery in cups

Grow it on your deck or porch

Ants on a log, yum.

 

#10 A Walk on Wood

 No. 10  A Walk on Wood

In Portland Oregon you will find a unique experience, a wooden sidewalk that spans four downtown blocks connecting Jamison Square Park and Tanner Springs Park in Portland’s Pearl District.  The wooden walkway and parks were planned as a way to reconnect this part of downtown Portland to the Willamette River.  The parks and surrounding area within the Pearl District have many sustainable design elements to enjoy.  Besides utilizing wood as a renewable resource material for the walkway, there is a fountain that simulates a shallow tidal pool, and the recreation of a natural wetland and pond in an urban setting.

I found it to be a very relaxing experience while walking the four blocks as the sound of the wood below your feet seems to transport you out of the urban environment.  I would recommend the journey if you are in Portland.

 

Please vote for your favorite photo/message by sending an email to dpoulos@parecorp.com.  Simply indicate your choice of Photos 1 – 10.

Thanks for participating!