Blog

August 23, 2017

Tunnel Boring Machine Launches in Charleston

Davis & Floyd is a proud member of the Spring / Fishburne US17 Drainage Improvements Project team for the City of Charleston. Together, we are celebrating the launch of a Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) that recently entered a 150-foot-deep shaft. Currently, the TBM is underground and headed generally along Septima Clark Parkway to Coming Street. At 12 feet in diameter, this is the largest tunnel to date in the Charleston region and will eventually convey stormwater runoff from flood-prone areas within the drainage basin to a pump station and outfall at the Ashley River (construction starting in 2018). Once all phases of the project are completed, this work will provide reliable drainage service independent of tides with provisions to accommodate and facilitate further mitigation efforts for addressing sea level rise. Resilient development relies on resilient infrastructure to support it and while the Spring / Fishburne and other similar projects will not prevent flooding within the Charleston peninsula, the impacts and damages resulting from the dry and wet weather flooding that are increasing in frequency today will be better avoided tomorrow.

Tunnel Boring Machine with project representatives from the City of Charleston, Black & Veatch, and Davis & Floyd

Tunnel Boring Machine with project representatives from the City of Charleston, Black & Veatch, and Davis & Floyd

30-foot-diameter, 150-foot-deep access shaft

30-foot-diameter, 150-foot-deep access shaft

Additional project information can be found at http://www.charleston-sc.gov/index.aspx?NID=1172.

July 26, 2017

Happy Birthday to Us!

On June 21, 2017, Davis & Floyd celebrated our 63rd anniversary.

Sixty-three years ago, two young engineers from small town Greenwood, SC, Emmett I. Davis, Jr. and Phil Floyd, staked their all on a dream with no guarantee of success. Through their hard work, vision, and passion, Davis & Floyd has grown to more than 200 employees in five offices throughout South Carolina.

Davis & Floyd vehicle

Our firm’s success is no secret. It’s about the people who’ve been a part of the journey. Our people are what makes Davis & Floyd not just a company, but a family.

We have a strong history that we can be proud of. To take a glimpse into the past, take a look at our firm’s timeline.

This year, as a token of appreciation, each employee received a book, “A History of Davis & Floyd”. This book was a labor of love, which our founder, Mr. Davis, cared deeply about and worked tirelessly over the last several years to memorialize the company’s history. We were honored to distribute the books to our team in his memory.

As we celebrate our 63rd year, we look forward to continuing our work to make South Carolina even better. Thank you to our clients – past and present, friends, colleagues, and employees. You’ve played an important part in making Davis & Floyd what it is today and we couldn’t have done it without you. Here’s to the next 63!

June 29, 2017

Evolution of Industrial Sites

Industrial sites and parks, which are large areas of land developed for industrial purposes, have had a major impact on South Carolina’s economy for years. After World War II, there was a concerted effort to attract more diverse industries to the state to provide jobs for returning veterans. Some may remember the State Development Board – the predecessor to what we currently know as the Department of Commerce. Part of their long-term mission was and is to assist communities prepare for industrial investment and the resulting job creation. Historically, as a state, we have been identifying and developing industry-ready properties for many decades, but the process has evolved.

In the early days, this type of development moved much slower than it does today. There was ample time to identify a suitable piece of land for an industrial site, survey the land, and if utilities weren’t there, providers and developers had plenty of time to get them there. Sadly, that’s not the case today. We move fast and so do our projects. In today’s world, manufacturing companies have to avoid risks associated with moving or opening an entirely new facility. Risks are usually in the categories of time and budget.

It’s easy to assume that a large area of land would make a great industrial site, but that’s not always the case. There are many factors that must be weighed, but two to consider when identifying an industrial site include:

1. Identify an existing site where operations have closed and repurpose the land. One benefit is that the required utilities typically are already in place. A challenge generally lies in existing environmental issues from previous operations that need to be mitigated.

2. Identify property that has been undeveloped that would be suitable for industrial development. For undeveloped property, there are many important factors to consider, including if utilities exist on the site or if they need to be brought in. If it’s the latter, that adds risk in both time and money. Not only is there a large cost involved in bringing in water, power, etc. to a site, but it takes more time due to coordination with various utility providers.

While there are many more details that go into developing an industrial site, these keys items are crucial in the beginning of the process and so is having the right team in place from the beginning to help evaluate the viability of a site. It’s important to work with a consulting engineer that understands not only land development, but also utilities, regulatory agencies, transportation, environmental issues, etc. At Davis & Floyd, our experienced industrial team has assisted in the development of sites and parks throughout the state and stands ready to help in the development process from start to finish.

Upstate South Carolina Industrial Site - April 2017

Upstate South Carolina industrial site – April 2017

Upstate South Carolina Industrial Site - June 2017

Upstate South Carolina industrial site – June 2017

June 19, 2017

Flood Risks Remain for SC Communities

Running from June 1 through November 30, the Atlantic hurricane season has begun. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) forecasters predict an above-normal 2017 hurricane season with the predictions showing a 70 percent likelihood of 11 to 17 named storms of which 5 to 9 could become hurricanes and 2 to 4 are predicted to be Category 3 or above.

As we contend with the 2017 season and reflect on the devastating flooding events many in our state experienced in 2015 and again in 2016 because of Hurricane Matthew, it’s hard not to stress over the possibility of encountering such an event this year. Davis & Floyd has witnessed the challenges faced by those experiencing flood damages and those providing public services spanning from emergency responses through recovery and into mitigation, where possible, in advance of our next event.

As an engineering firm that provides stormwater management and flood hazard mitigation, Davis & Floyd recognizes the need to bring awareness to the risks associated with flooding. While we would like to find a simple solution to removing such risks, there are practical limitations in what truly can be accomplished in protecting our property against the forces of nature. Whether it’s increasing rainfall rates and depths or sea level rise along our coast and tidal systems, there’s little doubt that our challenge in becoming a better prepared and more resilient community will be ever increasing.

We recommend that everyone seek a basic understanding of flood risks to life and property. Be “Flood Smart” and review your insurance policies since flood coverage is not part of most and there is a 30-day waiting period for coverage to take effect. Visit the National Flood Insurance Program at www.FloodSmart.gov for more information on flood insurance coverage.

Finally, heed the guidelines and directives provided by the South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) http://scemd.org/ and local agencies when a storm threatens your area.

Additional resources to assist in your hurricane season preparations and understanding of flood hazards may be found by visiting:

2017 South Carolina Hurricane Guide
SCDOT Evacuation Routes
National Hurricane Center
FEMA Flood Map Service Center
South Carolina Flood Mitigation Program

Tide overtopping Broad Street at Lockwood Drive in Charleston, SC (Photo - Jared Bramblett)

Tide overtopping Broad St. at Lockwood Dr. in Charleston (Photo – Jared Bramblett)

May 17, 2017

Davis & Floyd Joins “Rising Above Our Flooding Streets” Charleston Event

Flooded streetsIt’s no secret that each time it rains in Charleston, the streets quickly flood and locals are forced to wade through water to get to work, school, or simply around town. But what type of long-term effect does this flooding have on the area? At Davis & Floyd, that’s something we’re committed to studying so that we can create solutions to protect the area and mitigate the problem.

On May 20th, Davis & Floyd will take part in the “Rising Above Our Flooding Streets” event on King Street in Charleston. The event is being put on by Enough Pie, a nonprofit devoted to empowering Charleston’s Upper Peninsula. Artists, community leaders, and concerned citizens alike will unite to discuss the rising tides of Charleston and how we can work together to better protect this beloved city.

Davis & Floyd team members will be on hand to discuss various past and present storm drainage projects and efforts, so stop by!

Additionally, Davis & Floyd engineer Jared Bramblett has been displaying his photography series titled “Variable Boundaries”.

“‘Variable Boundaries’ is a series exploring Charleston’s complex relationship with the seas and rising waters,” says Jared. “Since its settlement, Charleston’s population has been manipulating the Lowcountry landscape through our interactions with the environment. The city was built just above sea level and it seems that the boundaries between the water and the land have never been more fragile.”

Jared began photography as a hobby several years ago. His work at Davis & Floyd has included storm drainage improvement projects in downtown Charleston. He decided to marry the two and began taking photos as part of his work.

Flooded streetsThe Davis & Floyd team is excited to take part in this important event. For more information, visit www.enoughpie.org.

To learn more about Jared’s work, check out the article in Charleston City Paper highlighting his photography series: Photographer Jared Bramblett puts Charleston’s rising tide problem into stark relief