ARTBA announces "PRIDE Award" winners

March 03, 2004

Transportation construction organizations from California to Pennsylvania were recognized at the American Road & Transportation

Transportation construction organizations from California to Pennsylvania were recognized at the American Road & Transportation Builders Association Transportation Development Foundation's fifth annual "PRIDE Awards" luncheon, held Feb. 24 in Washington, D.C.

Established by the ARTBA Board of Directors in October 1999, the PRIDE Awards honor "excellence in community relations and public education that enhance the image of the U.S. transportation construction industry."

Roads & Bridges magazine was one of the sponsors of this year's competition. An independent panel of public relations professionals and construction industry journalists selected the winners. State transportation departments, associations and private sector firms were recognized in the following categories: community relations and public-media relations/education.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation claimed first place in community relations--state departments of transportation for its Danville-Riverside Bridge Dedication Ceremony. After 16 years of planning and consultation with the public and two years of construction, PennDOT wanted the community to be involved in the dedication ceremony opening the Danville-Riverside Bridge over the north branch of the Susquehanna River. The agency created a 4-ft x 8-ft aerial photo poster of the old and new bridges and Pennsylvania-based Crayola Crayons to donate hundreds of commemorative crayons that would be used to sign the photo poster.

Second place went to the Oklahoma Department of Transportation (Webber Falls Memorial Dedication Event) and the Arkansas State Highway & Transportation Department (Public Involvement Process).

The Ohio Contractors Association was honored with first place in community relations--industry associations for its community relations programs. OCA and its 10 local chapters provided financial support and pro-bono labor and materials to many charitable and community-based projects around the state.

Virginia Road and Transportation Builders Association (Partners in Education Program) was runner-up among industry associations.

The best among private sector firms was Wilbur Smith Associates for its Work-Zone Safety Program. To help reduce the growing number of fatalities in South Carolina roadway construction zones, Wilbur Smith Associates, State Farm Insurance and Families Against Speeding Tragedies worked together to educate young drivers in the Columbia area about the many safety hazards associated with roadway work zones.

Claiming second place were the Railroad Construction Co. Inc. (Railroad Construction Family of Companies & Paterson Habitat for Humanity) and Stacy and Witbek Inc. (Interstate MAX 10 Light Rail Project).

The North Carolina Department of Transportation was the first place winner for public-media relations/education--state departments of transportation. NCDOT and nine other state agencies created a 110-ft x 60-ft "Safety City" at the 2003 North Carolina State Fair to reach out to the community about highway and traffic safety.

Runner-up went to the New Mexico Department of Transportation (Reconstruction of Historic Rte. 66).

The Ohio Contractors Association made a clean sweep among industry associations by also claiming first place in the public-media relations/education category for its work behind the Ohio Transportation Funding Public Relations Campaign. OCA, in conjunction with the Ohio Construction Information Association, developed and widely distributed easy-to-read brochures, reports and analyses quantifying the state's transportation needs.

Second place went to the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (, and the Pennsylvania Highway Information Association (E-motion Newsletter) was awarded third place.

The top private sector firm for public-media relations/education was Sundt Construction Inc. for the Skyline Design-Build Improvement Project. Sundt opened an office in the Skyline Project neighborhood to be readily available and address concerns raised by residents about construction. A 24-hour telephone hotline and website provided current information about the job and "construction alerts" were distributed to the media regularly.

H.W. Lochner (12300 South Design-Build Project) claimed second.