Taking Ames

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“To do every job we do better than anyone else.”

That’s what Manatts of Brooklyn, Iowa, strives to achieve on every project, whether it’s paving a new asphalt surface on I-35 or I-80, which cross the state, or reconstructing a residential street in Ames, Iowa.

The diversified construction company has more than 50 years of experience with an emphasis in concrete and asphalt paving, as well as ready-mix and asphalt production. While many of Manatts’ projects are major road construction endeavors, the company has found a niche working with city and county officials to rehab city streets.

In Ames, Iowa, home to one of Manatts’ many offices, the company reconstructs streets from April through November. Reconstruction includes curb-and-gutter repairs, installing new handicap sidewalks and paving approaches.

While Manatts’ Ames crew could certainly ask the city to close an entire street for three weeks for resurfacing, curb and gutter and intake construction, Manatts’ Superintendent Matt Triggs said the company prefers working in stages in order to accommodate residents.

“We try to complete our projects in phases to inconvenience the homeowners less,” he said. “We’ll get everything we can finish off the side of the streets first, and then we’ll full-depth mill the road, re-grade it and put down new asphalt.”

To work in the streets while keeping sections open for traffic to pass through, Manatts employs several Bobcat skid-steer loaders and attachments because of their compact size, durability and versatility. Dirt excavated by the Bobcat loaders is conveniently removed from the street so it can quickly be reused once new curbs and gutters are installed. Because of the machine’s nimble frame, it easily fits on tight jobsites and efficiently moves material without disrupting the street’s surface.

Duane Hassebrock, general manager of the Ames office, said his crews use the skid-steer loaders with a hydraulic breaker to remove concrete, and a bucket attachment loads the debris into dump trucks.

“The Bobcat S250 has the extra reach that we need to load our trucks,” said Hassebrock. His crews also use a bucket to grade the surface, and clean the area with a sweeper attachment.

Hassebrock said his asphalt crews also use the Bobcat skid-steer loaders with planer attachments to mill surfaces where larger equipment cannot reach. With high-flow auxiliary hydraulics, he said the milling attachments work even more efficiently.

In an industry typically dominated by large construction equipment, compact skid-steer loaders have found their niche with Manatts, saving the company time and money. Hassebrock said the convenience of matching the right equipment to the right job provides the biggest savings. At the end of the day, Manatts’ employees can say they have done the job better than anyone else thanks to their compact equipment.

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