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Mark Hanson: Directing Ultraviolet Disinfection

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It took teamwork to build the New York City Dept. of Environmental Protection's $1.4-billion, 2-billion-gallon-per-day Catskill/Delaware Ultraviolet Disinfection Facility—the world's largest—on time, on budget and with less than 2% change-order costs.


Mark Hanson, project director for the White Plains, N.Y.-based Malcolm Pirnie/ Englewood, Colo.-based CH2M Hill joint venture performing construction management for the NYCDEP, was a driving force in keeping the massive project moving forward, says Doug Owen, executive vice president and chief technical officer, water division, of Highlands Ranch, Colo.-based ARCADIS-US, which now owns Malcolm Pirnie. Before moving to the consultant and management side, Hanson gained valuable experience working for a contractor, Owen says. As a result, "Mark understands the most important challenges the contractor has to tackle and is insightful in resolving issues," Owen notes.

"[Hanson] brought in a lot of high- quality people from all over the country and assembled the right team" to make the project a success, says George Schmitt, NYCDEP's executive construction manager at the bureaus of engineering, design and construction.

With four prime construction contracts, Hanson often had to coordinate third-party conflict resolution. "He [was] very proactive in resolving issues to keep things on track," Schmitt says.

Paul Whitener, CH2M Hill's principal project manager, says Hanson fostered an environment in which everyone on the team was allowed to flourish and make valuable contributions.

"He is open to suggestions and is receptive to new ways of doing something," Whitener says. "I've participated in many joint-venture projects, and I can honestly say this is the best."

The facility is currently in the testing phase. However, it will be treating water from the Cat/Del watershed by Aug. 3, in compliance with federal rules regarding surface-water treatment.


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