Tag Archive | "construction"

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Posted on 11 October 2018 by LeslieM

Periodic column on companies that grew up with our community

By Karen Lustgarten

When she was 13, Adolphine “Dodie” Keith remembers heading out on survey and mapping jobs with her father, William “Bill” Keith, along with his crew and watching how the work was done for construction projects.

Mr. Keith began making a mark on South Florida in 1956 when he joined the Broward County Engineering Department as a surveyor. Then, in 1972, he started the engineering firm Keith & Schnars. It would become synonymous with Broward’s growth.

His firm helped plan Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and bought the land and developed the route for the Sawgrass Expressway. It was responsible for planning Parkland and the redevelopment of Deerfield Beach, Pompano Beach and Boca Raton. They surveyed 390 miles from Florida to Georgia and bought 4,000 parcels of land for a Florida Power & Light transmission line.

In 1998, Mr. Keith established Keith & Associates, his own Pompano Beach-based civil engineering, planning, surveying firm. Daughter Dodie grew up to become a professional surveyor and mapper working in that capacity for her father.

By the time Mr. Keith died in 2006, he had spent his life working towards the development and improvement of the south Florida community and giving back to it, helping improve the county’s infrastructure and way of life. Dodie Keith-Lazowick succeeded her father as company president and managing principal.

Under her leadership, KEITH, as the firm has been rebranded, has grown to include civil engineering, surveying and mapping, subsurface utility engineering (SUE), urban & comprehensive planning, landscaping, permitting, construction management and construction engineering inspection.

I work in the development field, so believe growth is good,” she said. “Dad always taught me respect for the community. I try to make projects better for both the residents and the city.”

The Ft. Lauderdale airport, a key KEITH client since her father’s early days, is a case in preservation. A huge African Baobab tree was set to be cut down when a new airport runway was being planned. Dodie proposed a slight redesign shift in the runway plans that preserved the historic tree.

Dodie helped draft the Pompano Beach 2020 business plan and Mayor Fisher’s stimulus task force. Her firm helped raise funds and advocated to pass the Pompano Beach bond referendum for capital improvement projects that will revitalize the city.

KEITH is at work on several major construction projects you are witnessing around Pompano Beach to revitalize the city. Successful advocates for permitting and approvals, staff has coordinated the site plan approval process through the city and provided civil engineering design, project management, permitting coordination, planning, surveying, construction management, infrastructure convergence and roadway improvements, assessments and recommendations.

Among the projects you notice are the following: the pedestrian-friendly Pompano Beach Blvd. streetscape, Old Pompano Area streetscape improvements, as part of the Downtown Connectivity Plan, MLK Jr. Blvd. streetscape improvements, MLK Blvd., the Pier Parking Garage, John Knox Village and in-kind site design services to preserve the Sample-McDougald historic House/Museum.

Coming up: The new Mullet Alley — turning an existing parking lot in the Old Pompano area into a lively plaza — awaiting the site plan design and development approval.

I enjoy Pompano Beach. It has a different feel than other cities and we want our own distinct city identity in South Florida,” says Dodie. “Pompano Beach is a community-based and family-oriented place. Our parks and roadway projects, for example, help give our city its own identity as a community.”

As a business community leader, Bill Keith was committed to causes he cared about such as the Broward Urban River Trails and homelessness. He was founding chair of Broward Partnership for the Homeless helping people stabilize their lives. Dodie is the 2018 board chair and a fundraiser.

Dodie’s son Alex and daughter Elizabeth serve as third generation professionals at KEITH. Alex Lazowick, a civil engineer, is executive vice president, and Elizabeth, with a marketing degree, is corporate manager, overseeing more than 100 employees in five state offices. They are committed to the company values established by their grandfather and mother. With young children of his own, Alex sits on the board of the Parks Foundation of Broward County, raising funds for Broward County parks.

The business transition plan has the 3rd generation taking over KEITH with Alex stepping into his mother’s role as president, “so, hopefully, I can sit on Pompano Beach watching the sunrise,” said Dodie.

Karen Lustgarten is president of Multi-Media Works, a multiple award-winning media company specializing in video, PR, print and social media with offices in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. She founded a newspaper in Washington, DC, was a syndicated columnist and a bestselling author. www.multi-mediaworks.com

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CLERGY CORNER: Is construction evil?

Posted on 18 February 2016 by LeslieM

Let us examine the story the Bible records following the devastating flood, the greatest natural disaster of all times, which wiped out almost all of humanity. It is the ambiguous story of the Tower of Babel. Here is how Genesis 11:4-8 reads: “The people said, Let us build for ourselves a city and a tower whose top shall reach the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered over the face of the entire earth. And G-d descended to look at the city and tower which the sons of man built, and G-d said, …Shall it not be withheld from them all they proposed to do?… G-d scattered them across the face of the earth, and they stopped building the city.”

This is a strange story. Why did G-d interrupt their project? What was their sin? Their motives for building a city with a tower “whose top shall reach the heavens” are quite understandable, even noble. Mankind was only just reconstructing itself after the Flood, which had wiped out the entire human race, except for Noah and his family. If humanity were to survive, they needed to construct a strong city and tower that could possibly avoid the next disaster. What was wrong with their scheme? Hasn’t the Bible made it a moral imperative to “Be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it”? [Genesis 1:28]

One of the possible answers is this: In stating their objective in creating the city and the tower, the people declared, “Let us build for ourselves a city and a tower whose top shall reach the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves.” Their motive behind this dramatic construction plan was to immortalize their legacy in concrete structure, the endurance of their names in the annals of history.

But what’s the big deal? The answer is simple. When you have observed a flood in which the entire human race has perished, have you nothing else to think about but securing for yourself a name and a legacy? Imagine somebody gazing at a home swiftly being consumed by a flood. Instead of running to rescue the people inside the home, this person stands and reflects how he can be sure to make a name for himself in the process. This would be grotesque. Can’t you ever forget about your ego? Is there never a moment you are capable of saying to yourself, “Forget my legacy! Human lives need to be saved!”

This is true of every grand campaign undertaken to help humanity. If the objective is self-aggrandizement rather than service to G-d and His children, the very core is tainted; the consequences of this blemish will likely be manifested in the future.

In our own lives we often observe people whose lives have been destroyed by a “flood”, in one form or another. Our question at such a time must always be how do I rebuild a broken heart? How can I ignite a tortured soul? How can I help a survivor? How do I bring more light into a dark world? How do I increase acts of goodness and kindness? What new deed can I undertake to heal the world? How do I extend myself to be there for another person? What can I do to change my corner of the world and make it a more moral and holy place? What will I do today and tomorrow to move our aching planet one step closer to redemption?

On Tuesday morning, we all witnessed tornadoes peel away roofs, rip trees from the ground and dump branches and debris all over the streets. However, as I stood in the Sand & Spurs equestrian park moments after the storm, I watched strangers selflessly helping anyone that needed it – people were schlepping debris, passing out water and assisting animals in getting shelter. To me, this was the human race on its best behavior.

So to you and to G-d I say, we have learned from the past; your children look out and care for each other, so please continue blessing us with peace and health. Thank you to all the nameless people who continue to restore our faith in humanity. To the City of Pompano and all its employees, you should be proud. It was an awesome response and job well done – thank you!

Good luck with the hard work ahead rebuilding!

Rabbi Tzvi Dechter is the Director of Chabad of North Broward Beaches. New location coming soon. For all upcoming events, please visit www.JewishLHP.com.

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Hillsboro Streetscape Project Update – 6/4/2011

Posted on 05 June 2011 by LeslieM

The City / Community Redevelopment Agency and Ric-Man Construction have completed new street lighting installations now that FPL has removed their aerial facilities (wires and poles).

We anticipate the Contractor (Ric-Man Construction) requiring five weeks to complete the project’s punch list and concrete paver brick restorations.

The installation of landscape areas soils commenced May 16, and tree installations commenced on May 26.

Other plants and irrigation sprinklers including the final layer of asphalt and new roadway striping will follow these operations.

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NE 2nd Avenue closed due to work at Deerfield City Hall thru May 7

Posted on 28 April 2011 by LeslieM

Beginning this Saturday, April 30 at 6 AM, NE 2nd Avenue in, front of City Hall, will be closed to vehicular traffic between NE 1st and NE 2nd Streets, due to work on the clock tower. The road will be closed for one week, reopening on Saturday, May 7 at 6 PM. Questions can be directed to the city’s Facilities Maintenance division at 954-480-4315.

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Pompano CRA breaks ground on Altantic Blvd. streetscape

Posted on 28 April 2011 by LeslieM

The Pompano Beach Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) held a Groundbreaking Ceremony for Streetscape Improvements to East Atlantic Boulevard between AIA and Pompano Beach Boulevard on April 27.

This is the first shovel in the ground project in the East CRA District. Planned improvements include reconfigured street lanes, wider sidewalks for outside dining and improved landscaping, according to Sandra King, spokesperson for Pompano Beach.

Construction will officially begin on May 2.

During the ceremony, Mayor Lamar Fisher said, “This has been a long journey. Now we can celebrate that a vision has become a reality and that dreams do come true.”

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FPL begins removing overhead lines in Deerfield

Posted on 21 April 2011 by LeslieM

On April 20,  FPL began to remove electrical poles and wires along Hillsboro Boulevard, which were previously de-energized as part of the Hillsboro Boulevard Streetscape project. Overnight work by FPL crews will continue over the next several weeks, with this portion expected to be complete by May 20, 2011. This phase is proceeding during evening hours to lessen the impact on traffic in the busy corridor. Work on Hillsboro Boulevard will commence at the A1A intersection and proceed west to the Federal Highway intersection. There will be temporary lane closures associated with this work. For more information about the project, call the Community Redevelopment Agency at 954-480-4263 or the Environmental Services Director at 954-770-4246.

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