Legendary sites have issues, too

Even world-renowned architects have designed houses that can, over time, develop problems. LANDTECH was honored when the National Trust for Historic Preservation reached out to us for help with Philip Johnson’s legendary Glass House property. in New Canaan, CT. Groundwater issues threatened the adjoining Brick House’s structural integrity, exterior and interior spaces and art and furnishings on display. LANDTECH engineers and scientists developed a plan to remediate drainage issues, control humidity, and ensure a safe, dry environment. Visitors who have been intrigued by beautiful photos of the Brick House on display will once again be able to enjoy this marvelous aspect of Glass House tours.

Greenway in Bloomfield

The Town of Bloomfield wants a Greenway, and asked the CTERT Environmental Review Team program, including LANDTECH’s very own Professional Soil Scientist and Professional Wetland Scientist Chris Allan, for pro bono professional expertise on conservation and long range planning for the University of Hartford’s northern campus and environs. Their findings are summarized in a new report, downloadable here.

Saugatuck’s newest digs

It’ll be the hottest new place in the coolest part of Town… Saugatuck’s newest digs, Saugatuck Mill on Ketchum Street a 17- 1 & 2 bedroom Residential Development. Led by Sam Gault and Jim Donaher of Gault Family Businesses the creators of the Saugatuck Center and their Project Team of Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick, Architect Bruce Beinfield and LandTech received a unanimous approval from the Planning & Zoning Commission last Thursday. Construction plans are underway and construction is planned for early spring 2020

Celebrating Oktoberfest at Wakeman Town Farm

Over at Wakeman Town Farms today, LANDTECH’s Pete Romano was busy handing out some of the more family-friendly concoctions to happy participants in the Farm’s annual Oktoberfest celebration and fundraiser. Judging by the photos, some participants enjoyed themselves so much they had to rest up against the barn wall… [hat tip for photos to Dave Matlow]

Pete Romano: Un-sung hero

LANDTECH’s very own Pete Romano got a lovely “Unsung Hero” write-up in today’s Dan Woog’s “06880” Westport blog, a fitting tribute to a guy who really thrives on service. Nice stuff…

Harvest Fest 2019

Many thanks to all our friends and neighbors who joined us for a sold-out turnout at Wakeman Town Farm last night, for our ninth annual Harvest Fest Dinner fund-raiser. We had amazing local farm-to-table fare whipped up by celebrity chefs, a live auction, amazing wines and desserts, great music and lots of fun… a great time was had by all! [tx for photo to Helen Klisser and WestportNow]

Ground-Breaking at Camp Mahackeno

LANDTECH’s Pete Romano was on hand with friends and colleagues last night to help celebrate the ground-breaking for the Westport-Weston YMCA’s expansion. Thanks to a $40 million bequest from Ruth Bedford, the expansion will include a new 22,000 sq ft building and a rebuild of Camp Mahackeno. LANDTECH has been instrumental in providing engineering services for the entire project since its start in 2014. [photos tx to Dave Matlow & WestportNow]

Welcome, Samantha!

LANDTECH is pleased to announce that Samantha Cheruk, who previously interned with us, has graduated from Villanova and joined our firm full-time. Samantha will be providing services as an Environmental Scientist and GIS (Geographic Information Systems) Analyst for our projects… welcome, Samantha!

Meet our summer intern, Tyler

LANDTECH is pleased to be welcoming our summer interns this year. Tyler Smith from Georgia Tech is returning and tells us that his time working at the firm last year — particularly his AutoCAD work — was helpful in his continuing civil and structural engineering studies.

After school ended this year, Tyler spent 3 weeks near the city of Cochabamba in central Bolivia, helping construct a pedestrian footbridge to benefit the local community. He tells us this real-life experience “opened my eyes to how challenging real construction is, with delays and problems that can cause major issues.” We’re happy to welcome him back!

Reviewing Mansfield’s wetland regulations

The town of Mansfield, Connecticut has selected LANDTECH to provide on-call peer review services for their Inland Wetland Agency, the group that oversees activities within regulated wetland areas.

We’ll be reviewing applications for consistency with federal, state, and local environmental and engineering guidelines.

The interns are here! The interns are here!

Zach Katz is our newest summer intern here at LANDTECH. He’s a Staples senior, born and raised in Westport. This fall he’s headed off to Cornell to study engineering, although he’s not sure yet what branch of engineering he will focus on — but finding out is what college is all about!

He’ll be helping with our Maplewoods Senior Living Center project, a waste-water project for the Town of Norwalk and lots of other interesting stuff….

Zach enjoys playing cello and skiing. He’s hoping for a relaxing summer before heading off to college, but working at LANDTECH may not fit into those plans!

Congratulations Curt!

LANDTECH’s very own Curt Lowenstein got the great news today that after months of conscientious study, he passed his exams and has recieved his CT license as a Professional Engineer, or “P.E.”! Congratulations Curt! Job well done – everyone here is very proud of you and your work…

A successful first presentation

LANDTECH’s very own Curt Lowenstein, EIT, had his first presentation before the Westport’s Flood and Erosion Control Board, with a successful result when the project – involving replacing a single-family residence – was approved! Congratulations, Curt! We look forward to many more…

Outline construction schedules for BJs

Build it and they will come… a BJ’s Warehouse, that is… to buy 5 gallon tubs of peanut butter and 72-packs of toilet paper. Which brought together the design team in charge of The Village, a 100,000 sq ft development featuring a BJ’s, coming to 280 Main Street in Norwalk CT later this year.

We all sat down at LANDTECH’s World Headquarters to begin outlining construction schedules and drawings on the project. The team includes GZA, a national environmental engineering firm, KBE Construction, in charge of building the development and us, LANDTECH!

Aquarion withdraws permits

LANDTECH’s wetland scientist Chris Allan says that after a number of meetings with state & town officials and residents, Aquarion Water is withdrawing its permit request to divert millions of gallons of water from the upper Norwalk River to supplement the Cannondale well in Wilton.

Pro-conservation advocates feel the decision is a positive one, but it could leave Aquarion facing resource shortages. They are reminding residents that water usage restrictions are in place for the foreseeable future…

Saving the world, one wetland at a time

LANDTECH wetland scientists Chris Allan and Tom Ryder were on hand for the annual meeting of the CT Association of Wetland Scientists (yes…. “CAWS”!). On the agenda: saving the world, one wetland at a time!

The public meets about Aquarion

Emotions were flowing at the Wilton Library Tuesday night when DEEP hosted a meeting to get public reaction to Aquarion’s plan to divert up to 1m gallons of water per day from the Norwalk River and nearby aquifers, for redistribution to other areas.

LANDTECH’s very own Chris Allan, professional wetland scientist, has been consulting on the project. He says the science is exceedingly complex and understood by few. Chris and several colleagues found that a properly managed mitigation plan could negate the environmental impact of this diversion. Nonetheless, the crowd was largely in vocal opposition. Next steps will be to see if DEEP is ready to issue a determination to permit the plan to move ahead. Whatever happens, one thing is certain — the controversy will continue! [photo by Robin McWilliams]

Designing Pear Tree Point Beach Park

LANDTECH is really proud to be have been selected to manage replacement and restoration of all the Norwalk’s West Rocks Middle School athletic fields. We love doing these fields for our local schools — when we see the kids get to play it’s incredibly satisfying.

LANDTECH is designing and overseeing turf field installation on both soccer fields and adjacent elementary school play fields, as well as concession stands, terraced hillside seating and seating stands, lighting and adjacent parking at the school… GO PANTHERS!!

Restoring West Rocks Middle School atheltic fields

LANDTECH is really proud to be have been selected to manage replacement and restoration of all the Norwalk’s West Rocks Middle School athletic fields. We love doing these fields for our local schools — when we see the kids get to play it’s incredibly satisfying.

LANDTECH is designing and overseeing turf field installation on both soccer fields and adjacent elementary school play fields, as well as concession stands, terraced hillside seating and seating stands, lighting and adjacent parking at the school… GO PANTHERS!!

Restoration after the Nor’easter…

At LANDTECH the Impossible only takes a little longer! After fall Nor’easters struck LANDTECH and G&C Marine’s Gary Wetmore moved in. Despite no landward access, weather, and the holidays the damaged existing timber structure was repaired in 8 days.

Pirelli Building Gets New Lease on Life

Folks driving past IKEA in New Haven often wonder what this building is — designed by legendary Bauhaus architect Marcel Breuer, it was the world headquarters for Pirelli Tires. Later, IKEA bought the land but left the building unused. Working with landscape architect Earl Govens and others, LANDTECH is spearheading design plans to renovate the structure into a very cool state-of-the-art hotel. And now we’ve moved one step closer with New Haven’s Planning & Zoning green-lighting the project to start work.

Now the only thing that could hold up the project is figuring out how to assemble the furniture…

Celebrating the season

Once again, a remarkable holiday Gathering of the Tribes for LANDTECH Friends and Family last night. We assembled with staff, colleagues, clients and friends in Tim’s Kitchen at Wakeman Town Farm for our annual Christmas party. In keeping with tradition there was food and drink, drink and food and still more food and a noisy assembly of partygoers going strong “Til the Cows Came Home.” [special thanks to Dave Matlow for the pics]

Connecticut’s first farm brewery

LANDTECH is proud to have helped make Kent Falls, Connecticut’s first farm brewery, into a reality. We provided site planning, waste water plan design and saw the project through a lengthy permitting process that included overcoming local opposition — one that now celebrates the craft brewery.

The state of Connecticut is trying to regulate the field but so far the legislation is causing more confusion than encouragement… meantime, Kent Falls is brewing on and folks are enjoying their Thu-Fri-Sat afternoon tasting rooms… Read more…

Moving forward on the electric vehicle service center

Following LANDTECH’s successful application in November for a zoning text amendment, last night’s Westport Planning and Zoning Commission voted 5-0 to approve expanding the planned property that was once used as a classic car showroom at 176 Post Road West and converting it to an electric vehicle service center with almost double the square footage. The site plan calls for extensive environmental cleanup and other repairs and improvements to the property.

Al’s Holiday Angels

Al’s Angels were out in force today, some 500 strong, packing up 1,680 holiday meals and an unbelievable 15,000+ wrapped gifts, all for local families in need. Norwalk’s Monsignor Orlowsky gave a blessing, the volunteers enjoyed breakfast and lunch, a DJ provided music and Al DiGuido and LANDTECH’s own Pete Romano spent the day shepherding volunteers – including lots of adorable kids, all eager to help. A great job on every one’s part! [tx to Dave Matlow for great photos!]

Santa comes to Saugatuck

A little misty rain never bothers Santa, and he and his elves arrived on schedule at Saugatuck Center for a tree lighting, christmas carols, candy cane and lots of little ones getting to meet Santa. Oddly, we looked all over and no one could find Pete Romano all evening – luckily, he was spotted at work this morning… Perhaps its a bit like Superman and Clark Kent? Anyway a jolly time was had by all! [a tip of Santa’s hat to Dave Matlow for some pics]

Studying the Norwalk river

Down by the River… LANDTECH wetland scientist Chris Allan was brought in to predict possible impacts of Aquarion Water Company’s application to withdraw 1+ million gallons daily from its well in Cannondale CT. Chris did impact studies on the nearby Norwalk River and neighboring wetland and provided recommendations on water management and preserving and enhancing wetland and fish habitats. Public hearings are anticipated, and Chris will be on hand to discuss his findings with the many groups and interested parties planning to attend. [photos courtesy of Good Morning Wilton]

Electric Car Dealership coming to Westport

Shocking News! Last night in an inspiring collaborative effort between the Westport P&Z Commission, their Staff, Land Use Attorney Eric Bernheim, Architect Richard Becker, Land Use consultant Mel Barr and LANDTECH, the Commission approved an amendment to the Planning & Zoning Regulation that will allow an Electric Car Dealership to come to the vacant site at 176 Post Road West. It was a perfect storm! A challenging site, a diligent property owner Dave Ross who sought to bring by all accounts an innovative tenant to the site, the Land Use attorney to craft the amendment , a P&Z staff to support it and the Commission who conscientiously reviewed, tweaked and then voted to approved it last night. A win, win, win for Westport.

Wesport YMCA Phase II Tour

LANDTECH principal Pete Romano accompanied members of Westport’s Planning & Zoning Commission today on a guided walk-through of submitted plans for “Phase II” of the Westport Weston Family YMCA’s renovations… [tx for photos to Dave Matlow & WestportNow]

Laughter is the best medicine

As a sponsor of the American Cancer Society’s “Comedy Against Cancer” tribute to the Gault Family’s heritage of service to our community, the LANDTECH crew turned out in force to support the evening’s festivities, a salute that included stand-up comedy, food, drink and much merriment in honor of our friends…

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