Event Packed Late Summer and Early Fall for WVCO!

WVCO tradeshow

The Willamette Valley Company is having a busy late summer/early fall! Last month, we had the honor of welcoming representatives from the Association of American Railroads (AAR), Railway Engineering-Maintenance Suppliers Association (REMSA), GoRail and several other Oregon rail manufacturers to honor Congressman Peter DeFazio at our Eugene, Oregon facility. Click here to learn more about this event.

In addition, team members from our Railroad, Wood Products and Concrete divisions have been meeting with a range of industry professionals on expo floors across the United States to discuss the challenges they are facing and present innovative new products and solutions to meet their needs. Our concrete repair products for transportation and infrastructure markets like FASTPATCH and POLYQuik have been utilized by several DOT’s and other public works and infrastructure professionals for a number of years.

We are so thrilled to be a part of the many industry events happening around the country. Here is a summary of the places where WVCO has appeared most recently:

APWA – PWX 2017
In late August, we met with thousands of Public Works professionals in Orlando, FL for APWA – PWX 2017 to showcase WVCO’s latest products, services and technologies specific to public works industries including construction management, engineering and streets/roads/bridges preservation and maintenance. WVCO has a longstanding relationship with the American Public Works Association (APWA) and has proudly presented our top rated Concrete Repair Products to members of the assocation for a number of years.

ASCE Pavements & Airfield Tech Conference
Also in late August, representatives from our concrete repair division were also on hand presenting POLYQuik Fastpatch concrete repair solutions to highway and airport project/construction managers at the ASCE International Conference on Highway Pavements and Airfield Technology in Philadelphia, PA. Transportation and airport safety professionals from all over the world attended to learn the latest technologies, implementation, construction, design, and research in this critical infrastructure field.

Western Bridge Engineers’ Seminar
In early September, we were in Portland, Oregon for the Western Bridge Engineers’ Seminar. This was a great opportunity to share our concrete repair solutions with bridge maintenance managers, superintendents, designers, crews, planners, programmers, inspectors along with local, state, federal, and other agency bridge owners involved in bridge maintenance activities. A number of educational meetings and seminars addressing the ongoing challenges of replacing the aging bridges across our country took place during the event.

League of California Cities – 2017 Annual Expo
This week, we wrapped up an exciting and productive week at the League of California Cities – 2017 Annual Expo in Sacramento, CA. An estimated 1,900+ city officials from 400 cities including mayors, council members, city managers and transportation officials throughout California attended the event. Our mission was to introduce products and services to ease the challenges and opportunities to help improve roads, rails, airports, seaports and bridges throughout the state.

What’s Next?
Members of our Railroad Division are now about to head to the Railway Interchange September 17th-20th in Indianapolis, IN. This massive event is the largest combined railway exhibition and technical conference in North America and is an experience we always enjoy.

Also coming up, Airfield Operations Conference(SWIFT 2017)September 18th-21st in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the 55th Annual Road & Street Maintenance Supervisors’ Conference in Yakima, WA in early October and the EWTA Info Fair in Huntington Beach, CA in late October!  If you’re attending any of these events, stop by our booths and say hello!

2016 APWA North American Snow Conference

APWA_snow_show_2016

Wait, it’s not even summer and we’re already thinking about snow and ice? You betcha! Snow and Ice management is a huge challenge to our infrastructure, so now is the time for public works professionals to prepare for next winter!

That’s why we’re headed to Hartford, CT later this month for four days of winter training and exhibiting new concrete maintenance solutions at the 2016 APWA North American Snow Conference. The special conference will bring together more than 2,000 snowfighters from every corner of the winter maintenance community, including our own representatives from POLYQuik, a division of Willamette Valley Company.

Snow and Ice Conference

The 2016 Conference is an excellent opportunity for us to introduce public works professionals to our high-performance concrete repair products, custom application systems and more.

Organizers will also be presenting quality education programs and technical tours, and opportunities to exchange ideas with manufacturers, distributors, consultants and other public works professionals.

The APWA North American Snow Conference is hosted by the APWA New England Chapter (and who would know more about snow and ice?). Be sure to stop by booth 441 to learn more how POLYQuik products are an effective solution to common concrete maintenance challenges relating to snow and ice.

About APWA
The American Public Works Association is an international educational and professional association of public agencies, private sector companies, and individuals dedicated to providing high quality public works goods and services. Originally chartered in 1937, APWA is the largest and oldest organization of its kind in the world, with headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri, an office in Washington, D.C., and 64 chapters throughout North America. APWA provides a forum in which public works professionals can exchange ideas, improve professional competency, increase the performance of their agencies and companies, and bring important public works-related topics to public attention in local, state and federal arenas.

To learn more, read our post 5 Ways American Public Works Association Impacts Your Community or visit www.apwa.net.

National Public Works Week returns May 15-21, 2016!

NationalPublicWorksMonth

Photo Source APWA.com

The American Public Works Association (APWA) is bringing back National Public Works Week for its 56th year in a row!

Every year in the third week of May, APWA sponsors National Public Works Week in an effort to raise awareness of public works issues and increase the overall confidence in public works employees.

What is National Public Works Week?

National Public Works Week (NPWW) is a public education campaign that seeks to create a stronger conversation and association between public works and the communities they improve daily.

One of the ways this is goal is achieved is through the issuing of a Top Ten list of public works professionals that show exceptional conduct and the highest of standards. Since its inception, NPWW has identified and honored over 400 men and women that work in maintenance, construction, design, and operation of major public works throughout the country.

National Public Works Week History

APWA first sponsored National Public Works Week in 1960, carrying it on as a yearly tradition from that moment onward. From the very beginning the focus has been clear, as evident in the first ever publication for the event.

The American Public Works Association, through its Public Relations Committee, will launch within the next few months a very important public education program. The primary purpose of the program will be to foster a better understanding of the function and importance of public works in the community, to enhance the professional status of public works officials in government, and to help attract competent personnel to the field.

The week October 2-8, 1960, has been tentatively set aside as NATIONAL PUBLIC WORKS WEEK (proclamation pending) to recognize and publicize the outstanding work being done by public works engineers and administrators. It is hoped that the program being planned will help arouse an interest in the young people of this country to pursue careers in public service.” – July 1960

Every year the week is filled with resolutions and proclamations from mayors, governors, and other political figures. Some notable examples include a United States Senate resolution that affirmed the very first National Public Works Week, letters of acknowledgement from Presidents Lyndon Johnson and Dwight Eisenhower, and a Presidential Proclamation that was signed by John F. Kennedy.

Getting Involved

If you’re looking for a way to get involved in National Public Works Week then consider some of these sources.

The APWA publish several handy tools on the subject, including a How-To Guide for anyone looking for a good place to start. This document offers help in the following categories: Getting Started, Calendar, Events, Outreach, and even a section for students.

Florida’s APWA chapter offers some fun ideas to celebrate during the week.

About APWA

The American Public Works Association is a nonprofit organization founded to serve public works professionals in all branches of industry. The association has a worldwide membership in numbers over 28,500 and is open to any individual, agency, and/or corporation that bring with them an interest in public works.

Self-Healing Concrete May Not Just Be For Sci-Fi

Henk-Jonkers

Professor Henk Jonkers at work. Photo Source: Newscientist.nl

“The problem with cracks in concrete is leakage. If you have cracks, water comes through — in your basements, in a parking garage. Secondly, if this water gets to the steel reinforcements — in concrete we have all these steel rebars — if they corrode, the structure collapses.” – Professor Henk Jonkers, Delft University of Technology, Netherlands.

Concrete repair products is a subject we know a lot about!  We’ve seen first hand the problems that slow-building cracks can create. But what if damaged concrete could heal itself? That’s exactly what Professor Henk Jonkers is working towards with his work into bioconcrete — concrete that heals itself using bacteria.

Jonkers was inspired by the human body in his work, which works by adding a limestone-producing bacteria agent to the concrete mix. As air is let in through cracks and damage to the concrete, the bacteria is activated and begins producing limestone and patching out the cracks.”You need bacteria that can survive the harsh environment of concrete. It’s a rock-like, stone-like material, very dry,” says Professor Jonkers.

This process could play a pivotal role during construction, when small imperceptible cracks form as concrete is laid. By self-patching immediately, this bioconcrete could prevent long term damage. You can see some of the self-healing concrete at work below.

To date, bioconcrete has only been able to heal cracks up to a very slim 0.8 mm wide in about three weeks, but it can also be sprayed in cracks of regular concrete to use its mending powers. It will certainly be interesting to hear what the future holds for bioconcrete, and if its European Inventor Award finalist nomination is any indication, we’ll be hearing much more soon!

It’s this ingenuity and forward-thinking approach to finding new unexplored solutions to potentially long-term and expensive problems why we have named Professor Henk Jonkers our “Featured Innovator of the Month.” We look forward to hearing more of his work in bioconcrete in the future!

Note: Henk Jonkers does not work for Willamette Valley Company nor is he affiliated with our company.

Sources:

CNN 

TUDelft

XPrize

The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act or “FAST Act” is Signed Into Law

FASTAct2America has always been a nation on the move. But an aging and crumbling transportation system is not only slowing Americans down, it’s reducing productivity, undermining our ability to move products across the country and around the world, and increasing congestion and air pollution. It’s time to get America moving again! – U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Last month, the first law providing long-term funding certainty for surface transportation in over a decade was signed into law. The implementation of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act, or “FAST Act” States means that local governments should be able to move forward with critical transportation projects, like new highways and transit lines, more easily. “After hundreds of Congressional meetings, two bus tours, visits to 43 states, and so much uncertainty – and 36 short term extensions – it has been a long and bumpy ride to a long-term transportation bill,” says U.S. Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx. “It’s not perfect, and there is still more left to do, but it reflects a bipartisan compromise I always knew was possible.”

The deteriorating condition of America’s roads, bridges and rail lines have been an area for concern for some time.  According to US Department of Transportation, sixty five percent of America’s major roads are rated “less than good” condition, while one in four bridges require significant repair or cannot handle today’s traffic and 45 percent of Americans do not have access to transit.

The FAST Act is considered by many to be a good start, as it increases funding by 11 percent over five years. “This is far short of the amount needed to reduce congestion on our roads and meet the increasing demands on our transportation systems,” states the U.S. Department of Transportation. “In comparison, the Administration’s proposal, the GROW AMERICA Act, increases funding by 45 percent”.

The law also makes changes and reforms to many Federal transportation programs, including streamlining the approval processes for new transportation projects, providing new safety tools, and establishing new programs to advance critical freight projects.

For a more detailed summary of some FAST Act provisions, visit www.transportation.gov/fastact.

 

FastPatch and Other Concrete Repair Products to Be Exhibited at 2015 Road & Street Maintenance Supervisors Conference!

Notable Civil Engineers
RS-Save-the-Date-2015The 2015 Road & Street Maintenance Supervisors Conference is just a couple of weeks away and representatives from POLYQuik, a division of Willamette Valley Company, will be there! The conference is an opportunity to share solutions to common problems and will cover areas like asphalt, traffic solutions, safety, environment, snow & ice and more.

The conference is organized by Washington State University and will take place September 28th-30th at the Yakima Convention Center.

Whether you are a supervisor in a government agency road or street department, an area foremen, a lead technician, an equipment operator, a crew leader, or a suppliers and contractors for the public works market; there is something for everyone at this conference.

Organizers will be presenting up-to-date methods and techniques for the maintenance and repair of streets, roads, highways, and bridges in addition to describing management concepts and practices for equipment and personnel involved in maintenance tasks and responsibilities.

This conference will be a great opportunity for us to connect directly with industry professionals and introduce them to our POLYQuik division which produces high-performance concrete repair products, color-stable coatings, fillers and sealants, floor coatings, primers, spray coatings, custom application systems and more.

Fastpatch concrete repair products offer an innovative solution to permanently repair and quickly return-to-service important infrastructure like roadways, airports, and facilities. Each product is designed with ready-to-use packaging to meet needs your application. Typical uses include:

  • Filling voids, defects and damaged areas in roadways, parking lots, warehouses and sidewalks.
  • Concrete foundations and footings, anchor bolts or rebar.
  •  Repair cracks and spalls in roadways, warehouse and freezer floors.
  • Roadway, warehouse floors, and dock repairs.
  •  Pillars, curbs, sidewalks.

Headed to Phoenix for the American Public Works Association’s ‘Best Show in Public Works’

Photo Source: American Public Works Association on Facebook

Next month, the fantastic team in our concrete repair products division is heading over to Phoenix, Arizona for the American Public Works Association’s Best Show in Public Works.

The APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition, the public works industry’s premier international event, is August 30 – September 2, 2015 at the Phoenix Convention Center.  For more than 100 years, the event has drawn thousands of public works professionals from all over the world and we’re honored to be a part of it.

To give you an idea of how large this event is, watch this highlight video from a previous year.

Representatives from our POLYQuick division will be in the Sustainability Pavilion to provide information and concrete repair resouces as well exhibit new and literature at Booth 1934.

WVCO will exhibit POLYQuick at the APWA International Public Works Congress & Exposition in August.

We are looking forward to unveiling the newest FastPatch products and breakthrough technologies with thousands of professionals from the Public Works, Engineering/Construction, Streets/Roads/Bridges and Facilities industries. 

Thousands of public works professionals from around the world come to this event every year.

Photo Source: American Public Works Association on Facebook

About APWA
The American Public Works Association is an international educational and professional association of public agencies, private sector companies, and individuals dedicated to providing high quality public works goods and services. Originally chartered in 1937, APWA is the largest and oldest organization of its kind in the world, with headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri, an office in Washington, D.C., and 64 chapters throughout North America. APWA provides a forum in which public works professionals can exchange ideas, improve professional competency, increase the performance of their agencies and companies, and bring important public works-related topics to public attention in local, state and federal arenas.

To learn more, read our post 5 Ways American Public Works Association Impacts Your Community or visit www.apwa.net.

The Challenges of Funding our Growing Transportation Needs

Highways and Bridges

Grow America

Transportation is critical to economic growth, however, economic growth is critical to fund the ever changing needs of our transportation system. One cannot exist without the other. The imminent threat of Highway Trust Fund insolvency combined with this paradox is the root of intense debate and discussion in Washington, DC and among key players in the transportation industry.

According to US Department of Transportation, sixty five percent of America’s major roads are rated “less than good” condition, while one in four bridges require significant repair or cannot handle today’s traffic and 45 percent of Americans do not have access to transit.

One of the proposed solutions to this challenge is The GROW AMERICA Act, a six-year bill that would increase investment for our nation’s highways, bridges, transit, and rail systems by 45%. The proposal is funded by supplementing current revenues from the Highway Trust Fund in combination with a 14 percent transition tax on an estimated $2 trillion of untaxed foreign earnings that U.S. Companies have accumulated overseas.

Critical investments are needed to help communities keep pace with our expanding economy, our growing population, and the traveling needs of the public. This animated video explains the key features of the GROW AMERICA Act and why we need to move forward on a long-term surface transportation bill.

How would you address the funding challenges in our transportation infrastructure?

For more information on this proposed bill and other transportation topics, please visit www.transportation.gov.

photo credit: 2008 06 09 – 3057 – Baltimore – I-895 at Moravia Rd via photopin (license)

2015 Western Bridge Preservation Partnership Meeting

Bridge Preservation
A few months ago, “60 Minutes” aired an insightful report about America’s aging infrastructure. According to the peice, titled “Falling apart: America’s neglected infrastructure“, 1 in 9 of the 700,000 bridges in the United States is considered “structurally deficient”.

Transportation activists and professionals agree there is an urgent need for lawmakers to invest in the much needed restoration of America’s outdated roads, rails, airports, seaports and bridges. One of the biggest challenges facing transportation engineering and maintenance personnel today is maintaining the integrity of these massive structures used by millions of people every day.

“Our highway infrastructure took decades and generations of Americans to build and is simply too valuable to be left to languish,” says Larry Galehouse, National Center for Pavement Preservation (NCPP) in this post. “As with any valuable asset, we must work hard to preserve it by judicious and timely proactive maintenance.”

Our POLYQuik Performance Products team is looking forward to meeting with bridge practitioners from state and local agencies, contractors, consultants, suppliers, academia, and federal government officials at the 2015 Western Bridge Preservation Partnership Meeting May 18-20, 2015 in Portland, Oregon. The event is a regional forum dedicated to bridge preservation practices throughout the Western Region.

Bridge Preservation is defined as “actions or strategies that prevent, delay or reduce deterioration of bridges or bridge elements, restore the function of existing bridges, keep bridges in good condition and extend their life.” Source: AASHTO Board of Directors, Policy Resolution PR-3-11, October 17, 2011.

The experienced chemists and engineers in our POLYQuik division continue to research and create high performance concrete repair products that are successfully utilized in bridge maintenance. The conference is an opportunity for us to share our concrete repair solutions with bridge maintenance managers, superintendents, designers, crews, planners, programmers, inspectors along with local, state, federal, and other agency bridge owners involved in bridge maintenance activities.

photo credit: “Old Town” Tbilisi and the Mktvari River via photopin (license)

POLYQuik Solutions to Be Presented at 2015 CCSA Pavement Preservation Workshop

Willamette Valley Company Vice President, John Murray will join POLYQuik Technical Sales Manager Rob Loomis and a handful of distributors to present our line of high-performance concrete repair products like FastPatch MD, FastPatch DPR and fillers & sealants like our EJC products at the California Chip Seal Association Pavement Preservation Workshop February 4-5, 2015.

The theme of this year’s CCSA Pavement Preservation Work Shop is aptly titled, “A Little Goes a Long Way”. Workshop attendees will include a range of transportation and infrastructure professionals who can expect to learn about the following concrete repair solutions at the Willamette Valley Company exhibit-

Expansion Joint (EJC) product line

The EJC product line is a unique hybrid polyurea that provides users with the ability to repair concrete expansion joints and passes the testing needed for airport runways, highways, parking decks, bridge decks, roofing and sidewalks that no other product of its kind can achieve. Even under extreme weather conditions and traffic, they retain the high performance characteristics needed for years to come. What you can expect from Expansion Joint Products: Rapid cure, 100% solids, Zero VOC, Self leveling, Highly elastic, remains flexible in freezing temps, Durable under stress.

FastPatch Products

It doesn’t matter if your concrete repair problem is up high, down low, in cold or warm temperatures, big or small, you’ll find the perfect solution in one of our FastPatch Products. This line of concrete repair products provides users with the ability to repair concrete spalls or voids in everything from roadways and parking lots, to warehouse buildings and sidewalks.

FastPatch MD’s meter dispensing is perfect for repairing large areas of damaged concrete while FastPatch DPR is ideal for distressed pavement repair in parking lots, warehouses, sidewalks and roadways. With each of these products you’ll experience excellent adhesion to concrete and an incredible cure rate that allows the repaired area to be open for use in as little as one hour!

To see it in action, watch this FASTPATCH MD/GC demonstration that features a large spall repair, longitudinal crack repair, and transverse joint sealing and filling:

POLYQuik products are tested and developed to the most stringent standards. Systems are thoroughly evaluated for performance with the latest in application equipment, physical properties testing, weather exposure, adhesion testing, chemical resistance testing and much more. The resulting concrete repair products are fast curing, tough materials.

Our laboratories and research centers are located in Oregon, Georgia, Louisiana and Chile. Our team of scientists and engineers consists of more than 45 members with more than 75 years combined experience in product development and application.