Project Highlights

With the pandemic year behind us but not completely gone, the lingering effects can still be felt throughout all industries but no more so than the small business owner.  ERC continues to provide top-notch construction and environmental service across the Houston and DFW area. ERC provides clients with unsurpassed levels of service as a natural result of our founding principles:

  • Professionalism in products and service
  • Absolute Integrity in work performance
  • Consistent service deliver
  • Quality workmanship
  • On-time completion of every project
  • Conservative budgeting & cost analysis
  • Sustainability

Take a look back at some of our project highlights.

Sam Houston Historic Park

City of Dickinson City Hall

 

 

Humble Underground Water Pipe

Joslin Power Plant

Procurement??? Nobody has time for that!

The procurement process for competitive bids can be quite labor intensive, expensive, and time consuming.

 

Why not skip the hassle and use a cooperative contract!

 

Members of a national purchasing cooperative include: colleges, universities, counties, municipalities, school districts and other governmental agencies.

 

Coop membership is FREE to qualifying entities!

 

As a member of any of the following coops,  you will have access to ERC’s awarded contracts.

 

By using a cooperative contract with ERC, you can feel secure that you’re doing business with a qualified and vetted business.

 

Give us a call to learn more and let us quote your next project!

 

Example of a standard project procurement workflow.
This process generally takes over 90 days.
Example of project procurement flow using a cooperative contract.
This process generally takes less than 30 days.

Disaster Recovery for Tornado Season

Texas averages 132 tornadoes a year. The majority of those tornadoes happen in the months of April, May, and June as cold weather meets the beginning of the summer heat. Tornados tend to take the path of least resistance through open fields, and unfortunately through buildings, houses, and highways. Natural disasters are difficult to prepare for when they come out of the blue with little to no warning. To battle the destruction caused by natural disasters, such as tornados, ERC has multiple Job Order Contracts (JOC) for disaster recovery.

Choice Partners Contract – Disaster Mitigation with Restoration (JOC-IDIQ)

Goodbuy Contract – Disaster Recovery and Remediation (JOC)

TIPS Contract – Disaster Restoration and Emergency Recovery (JOC)

After the tornado of October 2019 ripped through North Texas, ERC sprang into action and our DFW Area Manager, Kevin Rezvanipour, supervised a demolition project of an apartment complex that was damaged beyond repair. Not only was the apartment complex torn apart by the tornado, but it also contained asbestos that had to be abated with the demolition activities.

Even though the aftermath of a natural disaster can be devastating, many people came together to help where they could. Neighbors helped each other by chopping up fallen trees and clearing debris, community centers opened their doors for shelter and supplies, and local businesses offered assistance with damages caused by the tornado. ERC is a firm believer in relieving the stress of cleaning up with our cooperative contracts for disaster recovery and rebuilding.

Follow ERC on Facebook and LinkedIn for more news and updates!

Source: Earth Networks

 

April Showers Bring May Flowers to Texas

Spring brings warm weather and blossoming plants and flowers! Most Texans are more than happy to welcome the sun after the February winter storm, but with spring comes airborne allergens and molds. ERC is in full swing of conducting Indoor Air Quality testing after frozen pipes burst leading to flooding and potential mold growth in damp areas. Health effects from exposure to mold can vary greatly depending on the person and the amount of mold in the building. Symptoms that may occur include coughing, wheezing, runny nose, and sore throat. IAQ assessments are a proactive way of maintaining the health of your business and the people in the building. It’s never too late for an IAQ assessment!

The new season also inspires days outside at the park enjoying the warm weather. ERC is proud to help improve local parks, including dog parks, with our construction division. ERC recently constructed and installed concrete and gravel pads with stone bench seating areas for a DFW area dog park. ERC’s Project Manager, Will Springer, was challenged with the task of making the new seating areas exactly the same as the previously installed seating areas. Our team was able to not only complete the entire project within 23 calendar days, but also with no issues and a beautiful outcome! We are grateful for the tail waggin’ experience at the dog park and look forward to future ways of improving our local communities. Let’s build together!

Follow ERC on Facebook and LinkedIn for more news and updates!

 

Source: Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation (TDLR)

For more information about molds, visit these sites:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Consumer Mold Information Sheet

Meet the Key Team Members of ERC!

We are proud to introduce our team and newest employees! ERC is constantly expanding and growing our offices to meet our clients’ needs.

From left to right, starting with the top row:

TOP ROW

  • Megan Allgeier, Office Administration, Dallas
  • Bobbi Blaire, Accounting/Office Manager, Houston
  • Max Sanati, Construction Engineer, Houston

ROW TWO

  • Emily Saravia, Sr. Administrative Assistant, Houston
  • Kambiz Moayedi, Vice President, Houston
  • Shelly Horan, Project Coordinator, Houston
  • Henry Akinniyi, Field Engineer, Houston – NEW in 2021

ROW THREE

  • Will Springer, Jr. Project Manager, Dallas – NEW in 2021
  • Kommy M. Azarpour, President, Houston
  • Dan Tibbals, Sr. Project Manager, Houston

ROW FOUR

  • Mo El-Jechi, Field Engineer, Dallas
  • Kevin Rezvanipour, DFW Area Manager, Dallas
  • Ann Latourette, Project Manager, Houston
  • Bryan Lord, Construction Coordinator, Houston – NEW in 2021

ROW FIVE

  • Sarah Hearn, Receptionist/Administrative, Houston
  • Atzimba Paterson, Proposal Coordinator, Houston
  • Kammy Moayedi, Field Engineer, Houston

As we reflect on 2020, we are thankful for the opportunities to continue serving Texas throughout the unprecedented pandemic. We have been able to adapt and find new solutions to work smarter and safer. In the midst of all this… we GREW!

This year we:

  • Celebrated 30 years of service,
  • Expanded our Dallas/Fort Worth construction division,
  • Purchased a new permanent Corporate Office in Houston,
  • Submitted over 550 proposals,
  • Were awarded more than 610 projects,
  • Renewed 44 master services agreements,
  • Signed 7 new master services agreements,
  • Entered into 6 new Job Order Contracting (JOC) agreements, and
  • Expanded into Louisiana with both environmental and construction.

We already have so much planned for 2021, including our first mold webinar (keep an eye out for an invitation) and continued growth of our construction division – both in Houston and Dallas! Stay up to date on all ERC news by subscribing to our newsletter (link above), follow our blog posts, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Linkedin.

From our ERC family to yours, we wish you a happy holiday season and a prosperous new year!

Dallas Construction

ERC is a Small Business Enterprise with two divisions; environmental and construction. We have made a tremendous impact in the Houston area landing a 5-year Job Order Contract (JOC) with a major governmental entity in Southeast Texas. Our focus during 2020 has been to continue growing the construction division, both in Houston and in Dallas. We have succeeded, despite the coronavirus!

ERC recently completed a construction contract for a complete build out of an additional storage room for a fire station in North Texas. Due to the current pandemic and COVID-19 guidelines, the city has set in place extra precautionary measures.

This fire station was outfitted for the additional 2-story storage room to store COVID-19 personal protection equipment as well as added emergency materials. ERC’s Project Manager, Will Springer, drove the project from commencement to successful completion within one month.

Asbestos FAQs

What is Asbestos?  Asbestos is the name given to a group of naturally occurring minerals that are resistant to heat and corrosion.  Asbestos includes the mineral fibers chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite, anthophyllite, actinolite and any of these materials that have been chemically treated or altered.

Brief History:  Although the use of asbestos dates back to prehistoric times, the mineral came into popularity during the Industrial Age. Asbestos manufacturing was not a flourishing industry until the late 1800s, when the start of the Industrial Revolution helped sustain strong and steady growth of the industry. That’s when the practical and commercial uses of asbestos, with its myriad applications, became widespread.

Is asbestos hazardous?  Asbestos is harmful if the fibers become airborne and are inhaled. Fibrous asbestos can fracture into fibers small enough that they can penetrate deep into the lungs, where they can interact with the body to cause cancer or other illnesses. Asbestos-containing materials (ACM) that are intact and in good condition are not hazardous to building occupants under normal conditions.

How might I be exposed to asbestos fibers?  Asbestos can enter the environment from weathered natural mineral deposits and fiber releases arising from man-made asbestos products. Asbestos may be found in products like floor tiles; roof shingles; cement; mastic adhesive; automotive brakes and; electrical, plumbing, acoustical, and structural insulation. Asbestos fibers are released into the air when these products are disturbed.

What is my risk of being exposed?  Exposure, generally, is during construction where ACM is disturbed to the point of becoming airborne. While asbestos remains in place and non-friable (cannot be easily broken down and made airborne), adverse health effects are unlikely.

What if I’m exposed?  If you feel you have been exposed, visit your physician. The most common test used to determine if you have been exposed to asbestos is a chest x-ray. The x-ray cannot detect the asbestos fibers themselves, but can detect early signs of lung disease caused by asbestos exposure. Another tool used by physicians, called a pulmonary function test, can also be useful in identifying lung capacity changes. Periodic health examinations by a physician, including a chest x-ray and review of asbestos-based risk factors, can be effective. Asbestos risk factors include levels, frequency, and length of asbestos exposures; period of time since exposures; and smoking history. The combined impact of cigarette smoking and fiber exposures can increase the chances of asbestos-related lung diseases.

How do I avoid exposure?  Pay attention to warning signs around construction sites. Contractors removing asbestos are required to contain these areas so asbestos is not released outside of the work area, to monitor the area for possible exposure, and these areas are to be easily identified with proper signage.

How can I tell if something contains asbestos?  It is not possible to visually determine if a material contains asbestos. The presence of asbestos can only be determined by specific sampling and analytical procedures conducted by qualified individuals.

I have asbestos in my home. Do I need to do anything about it to protect my health?  Most of the time, no. The common materials used in home construction are floor tile, roofing and siding. These materials are very strong and don’t readily crumble and release the asbestos fibers unless they are subjected to strong forces. If you never have the need to disturb these materials, you may be able to leave them alone. But if you know that a needed repair or renovation will disturb the material, you may want to start planning with your consultant to abate the asbestos during the project.

What do commercial property owners/managers have to do with a construction project containing asbestos?  There are regulations in place that require owners to know if there is ACM in the building before commencing construction/demolition work. An asbestos survey must be performed and proof of such survey is required in order to obtain the necessary permits. This work is completed by an Asbestos Consultant, such as ERC. If any asbestos is to be removed, a consultant must provide instructions for safe removal (Asbestos Specifications or Design). Additionally, a consultant provides oversight of the removal with onsite monitoring throughout the project.

Is asbestos hazardous?  It is the unique physical shape of asbestos that gave it many practical applications and also makes asbestos hazardous. Asbestos is harmful if the fibers become airborne and are inhaled. Fibrous asbestos can fracture into fibers small enough that they can penetrate deep into the lungs, where they can interact with the body to cause cancer or other illnesses. Asbestos Containing Materials (ACM) that are intact and in good condition are not hazardous to building occupants under normal conditions.

If asbestos is so dangerous, why was it even used?  Asbestos was so useful because it was incredibly strong and resisted many elements well. It is so strong because of its natural composition. These fibers are extremely durable and resistant to wear. These are the properties making asbestos so attractive for adding to all types of products:

  • Inert: That means they have little or no chemical reaction when blended with other materials. This quality makes ACM stable and seemingly safe to handle.
  • Non-Flammable: Asbestos materials withstand extreme heat and pressure without breaking down.
  • Non-Corrosive: Asbestos fibers don’t rust or corrode when placed in wet and moist conditions.
  • Low Thermal Transfer Rate: Asbestos insulation was considered the best material to control heat loss and gain.
  • Tensile Strength: Asbestos fibers were enormously strong.
  • Lightweight: Some standard products had their weight cut in half when blended with high ratios of asbestos fiber.
  • Flexible: Asbestos fibers bend, twist, and turn while maintaining their strength and without giving up other properties.
  • Durable: Asbestos fibers do not break down, even when exposed to corrosive ultraviolet rays and acids.
  • Readily Available: Asbestos is commonly found in deposits around the world.
  • Economical: Because asbestos is common and lightweight, its mining and shipping costs are low. The savings were passed down to the consumer, along with all the other great features asbestos appeared to offer.

When was it realized that asbestos was a health hazard?  In the early 1900s, Dr. Hubert Montague Murray at the Charing Cross Hospital in London reported on lung disease in an asbestos textile worker. An autopsy confirmed the presence of asbestos fibers in the worker’s lungs. It was not until 1924, however, that the first case of asbestosis was reported in a medical journal. Documents from the 1930s and 1940s reveal that many asbestos manufacturers were aware of the serious health issues surrounding asbestos, but kept the information secret from workers and from the public. During the 1960s, evidence emerged indicating that asbestos fibers posed a dangerous medical risk. The United States federal government began to regulate asbestos in the 1970s through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Wasn’t asbestos banned years ago?  Only a few asbestos products are banned in the United States. You can still easily buy many asbestos products from the local home improvement store.

DANGER Asbestos Removal SignWhat if I work in a building currently under construction and there are asbestos warning signs?  Do not enter the area. Wherever asbestos is being removed (abated) the contractor will put up a containment with warning signs, so any airborne asbestos fibers do not migrate into the occupied areas. This work is strictly regulated and monitored for the safety of the abatement workers, as well as the occupants. Air monitoring is done throughout the abatement to ensure exposure does not exceed a very finite limit set by the Federal Government.

What happens with the ACM that’s removed from buildings?  ACM is carefully contained and transported in a sealed container to a hazardous waste disposal site. Because of its features, asbestos never breaks down and remains in these sites forever, unless removed and transported to a different site. The whole process of removal, transportation, and disposal is very tightly regulated.

 

For more information about asbestos, visit these sites:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Occupational Safety & Health Agency (OSHA)

Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Sam Houston Historic Park Renovations

The City of Houston General Services Department, on behalf of the Houston Parks and recreation Department, contracted with ERC to perform repairs of the historic buildings in Sam Houston Park. A total of eight (8) buildings were identified and a scope of work was prepared based on their unique needs. Although all eight buildings are of the same construction type, wood frame with wood siding, each has its own special set of requirements that needed to be addressed on an individual basis.

Building 6 – Old Place
Building 8 – Nichols Rice Cherry House
Building 10 – St. John Church
Building 12 – 4th Ward Cottage
Building 13 – Yates House
Building 14 – Staiti House
Building 15 – San Felipe Cottage
Building 16 – Pillot House

ERC proudly performed all tasks required and have come to project completion. We look forward to the park reopening and having the public continue to enjoy these historical buildings.

Testimonial

” I appreciate/we appreciate the good work that as occurred in the park. I have been very pleased with the craftsmanship and attention to detail. Thank you again and wishing you and your team health.”

~ Thomas McWhorter, General Services/Design & Construction/Parks Team – City of Houston

https://www.linkedin.com/company/28981459

Helping with Harvey Recovery…

… One Construction Site at a Time

The Wikipedia entry for Hurricane Harvey reads: “Hurricane Harvey is tied with 2005’s Hurricane Katrina as the costliest tropical cyclone on record, inflicting $125 billion in damage, primarily from catastrophic rainfall-triggered flooding…”

Hurricane Harvey before and after
Harvey – Before and After

Harvey in numbers:

  • $125 billion in damages (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
  • Over 300,000 structures flooded
  • Up to 500,000 cars flooded
  • About 336,000 customers lost power
  • Approximately 40,000 people in shelters (Texas and Louisiana)
  • More than 50 inches (average) rainfall in four days
  • More than 80 lives lost

Recovery has been slow. FEMA, insurance… well, government just doesn’t move very fast and insurance companies have been bogged with claims. The losses were just catastrophic and will take time to get everything back to normal.

 

ERC is helping recover from this widespread catastrophe. In 2018, ERC was awarded the first FEMA-related contract through the City of Houston’s General Services Division. We are renovating the McGovern-Stella Link Neighborhood Library, part of the Houston Public Library System, after flood waters damaged the building. The scope of work includes flooring, electrical, millwork, and painting.

McGovern-Stella Link Neighborhood Library before ERC Renovation
McGovern-Stella Link Neighborhood Library – Before Harvey, Street view.

What makes this project different? The paperwork. In an effort to insure the City of Houston and FEMA are on the same page as to what work is covered and what will be reimbursed to the City, this project’s paperwork was fine-tuned to address this unique situation.

“We are thrilled to be working with the City of Houston,” states Kommy M. Azarpour, CAPM, PE, president of ERC, “We’ve had a long relationship with the City on the environmental side. This isn’t our first construction project with the City, but it is the first in our 2019 focus on our construction division.”

“We want to impress the City of Houston with our professionalism, while at the same time, being easy to work with,” says Max Sanati, ERC’s superintendent of the project.

When the project is complete, we’ll post photos to our website, so please return to see the end result!

If you’d like more information on what Houston is doing to help recovery and their efforts to reduce the risk of this happening again, visit Houston Recovers. If you don’t live in Houston, but want information about your nearby affected area, there are links to get you to your neighborhood information.