Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow Join MIOSHA to Protect Construction Workers at Detroit Metro Airport

Contact: LARA Communications 517-373-9280
Agency: Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow Form Joint Venture for $ 418 Million Detroit Metropolitan Airport Project with the Goal of Zero Injuries for Workers

May 3, 2006 - Today Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow Company joined with the Michigan Department of Labor & Economic Growth (DLEG), the Greater Detroit Building and Construction Trades Council, the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights, and the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) to sign a major partnership to ensure the safety and health of workers on a Detroit Metropolitan Airport construction project.


Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow formed a joint venture, Walbridge Barton Malow (WBM) LLC, to demolish the existing Davey Terminal/Hotel complex at Detroit Metropolitan Airport and create the new North Terminal.  Construction is underway to build the 26-gate, 820,000 GSF (gross square foot) North Terminal to process domestic and international flights.


"Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow are two of Michigan's premier contractors and have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to protect their workers," said DLEG Acting Director Robert W. Swanson.  "This $418 million project will have a major impact on Michigan's economy-while all partners combine their efforts to protect every worker on the project."


MIOSHA has an existing first partnership with Walbridge Aldinger for their City of Dearborn Combined Sewer Overflow Contract # 3 project.  All partners have worked diligently to protect the workers on that project for nearly 16 months-and to date, there has not been a lost-time accident!


The construction industry is one of the most hazardous industries in Michigan. Only about four percent of Michigan's workforce is employed in construction-however, construction fatalities account for nearly 50 percent of all fatal workplace accidents.  All partners are committed to creating an environment where every construction worker goes home healthy and whole every day.


"Safety and security are top core values at Detroit Metropolitan Airport," said Wayne County Airport Authority CEO Lester Robinson. "I commend the North Terminal contractors and the state of Michigan for developing this innovative and efficient partnership."


Signing partners include:  Dennis Jones, Safety Supervisor, Walbridge Barton Malow; Charlie Pfeifer, Project Executive, Walbridge Barton Malow; Paul Tantalo, Project Manager, Walbridge Barton Malow; Mark S. Klimbal, Safety Director, Walbridge Barton Malow; Robert W. Swanson, Acting Director, Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Growth (DLEG); Douglas J. Kalinowski, Director, Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA); Patrick Devlin, Secretary Treasurer, Greater Detroit Building and Construction Trades Council; and Walter R. Mabry, Executive Secretary/Treasurer, Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights.


"When the building trades hear about industry owners, contractors and state government taking the initiative to commit to a goal of zero injuries on construction sites, it gets our attention," said Patrick Devlin, Secretary Treasurer, Greater Detroit Building and Construction Trades Council.  "This pro-worker initiative has all sorts of benefits, the most important of which is that perhaps it will mean fewer construction workers will end up injured - or worse.  As we go forward with the construction of the North Terminal, we are extremely pleased that this initiative has been put into place to help workers."


"The greatest accomplishment made at any construction jobsite is not the completion of a project-but that every worker on the jobsite returns home safely to their family at the end of the day," said Walter R. Mabry, Executive Secretary/Treasurer, Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights. "The Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights are proud to partner in this venture that enhances safety practices and job site productivity."


Partnerships are an important emphasis in MIOSHA's Strategic Plan to improve the health and safety of workers through cooperative relationships with groups, including trade associations, labor organizations, and employers.  Partnerships move away from traditional enforcement methods and embrace collaborative agreements.


"This joint venture between Walbridge Aldinger and Barton Malow brings together two great organizations with the same philosophy-zero tolerance for unsafe acts and conditions.   Partnering with MIOSHA allows us to utilize all the team members in the pursuit of that goal," said Mark S. Klimbal, CSP, Corporate Safety Director, Barton Malow Company.  "Through this cooperative effort, we can focus even more resources on the requirement to run a project driven by safety, quality, and productivity."


"This partnership agreement will help us in our ultimate goal of zero injuries on a very large and complex construction project.   The active integration of the Walbridge Barton Malow Safety and Health Program will further the fundamental goal of ZERO INJURIES," said Steve Clabaugh, Asst. Vice President - Safety, Walbridge Aldinger.    "We share a common vision with our partners, and supporting partners, to be committed to sending each and every trade's person that works at the North Terminal Redevelopment Project home safely."


The "North Terminal Redevelopment Project" partnership agreement has been established to raise awareness and promote safety for all personnel employed in the Detroit Metropolitan Airport construction project.  Recognizing that engineering techniques alone are not enough to ensure that exposure to hazards are controlled, the program includes coordination, monitoring and educating the personnel involved in the project.  These components will be implemented through the same principles of management control applied throughout all phases of the project.


Walbridge Barton Malow and the partnering trade unions and subcontractors endorse the ultimate goal of ZERO INJURIES on the North Terminal project.  The key elements to WBM's site specific Safety and Health Program for the project include:

·         Adherence to all safety policies, procedures, and MIOSHA standards.

·         100 percent fall protection over 6 feet, including steel erection and roof work. 

·         100 percent eye protection. 

·         All crane operators will be Certified Crane Operators (CCO).

·         Substance abuse testing through M.U.S.T. or equivalent program - adherence by all trade contractors.

·         Pre-Task Analysis (PTA's) to be completed and submitted to WBM by contractors prior to beginning critical work.

·         Contractors shall provide a Competent and/or Qualified Person for work operations as identified by MIOSHA standards and/or WBM.

·         WBM and the partnering employers on this project will uniformly enforce a disciplinary action plan for employees who fail to work in a safe manner.  Automatic dismissal from this project shall result from any willful or deliberate violation of safety rules or safety polices and procedures.


The Greater Detroit Building and Construction Trades Council and its affiliate unions are supportive of this partnership.   The partnering unions include:  Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights; Asbestos Workers Local 25; Bricklayers Local 1; Boilermakers Local 169; Cement Masons Local 514; I.B.E.W. Local 58; Iron Workers Local 25; Laborers Local 334; Laborers Local 1076; Laborers Local 1191; Operating Engineers Local 324; Painters D.C.; Pipefitters Local 636; Plumbers Local 98; Roofers Local 149; Sheet Metal Local 80; Sprinkler Fitters Local 704; Teamsters Local 247; Tile, Marble & Terrazzo Local 32.


The partnership does not preclude MIOSHA from enforcing its mission of addressing complaints, fatalities, or serious accidents, nor does it infringe on the rights of employees to report workplace hazards.


"The MIOSHA program is dedicated to working with employers to find innovative ways to enhance workplace safety and health," said MIOSHA Director Doug Kalinowski.  "Through partnerships, MIOSHA can offer employers a voluntary, cooperative relationship to eliminate serious hazards and achieve a high level of safety and health."


Walbridge Barton Malow is responsible for the construction of the new North Terminal Complex.     All airlines currently operating out of the aging Smith and Berry Terminals will move into the modern and efficient North Terminal upon its completion in 2008. Several international carriers, including British Airways, Lufthansa and Royal Jordanian will move from the McNamara Terminal.


The new facility will include a new apron, aircraft fueling, state-of-the-art security and baggage screening.   The two-level design makes extensive use of glass to provide ample natural light.


The North Terminal will also provide an attractive selection of shops, restaurants and services. An enclosed skywalk will connect the terminal to a parking deck.


Gensler is lead architect, with Ghafari Associates serving as consultant; the Barton Malow/Walbridge Aldinger joint venture is construction manager.  The team broke ground in spring 2006, with occupancy scheduled for 2008.


Headquartered in downtown Detroit, Walbridge Aldinger employs a professional staff of more than 600. The company provides a complete range of program management and design build services in all market segments of the construction industry.  Visit www.walbridge.com/ for additional information.


Headquartered in Southfield, Barton Malow Company employs 1,550 full-time staff, and has experience in 37 states and the District of Columbia. Their revenues for the previous five years were in excess of $1 billion annually. Visit www.bartonmalow.com for additional information.


Read more Michigan Department of Labor & Economic Growth press releases.