Bomel Construction awarded its first project at Loma Linda University in Southern California

LOMA LINDA, Calif., Oct. 1, 2012

A design-build parking garage with nearly 1,200 stalls is a key component of the school’s 10-year capital improvement plan. The owner’s representative calls Bomel, the largest concrete contractor in California, a “no-nonsense” company.

In a still-depressed construction market, Robert Cole, the owner’s representative for Loma Linda University Medical Center, and his team had eight contractors bidding on a critical new parking structure.

When it was time to make a final decision, Southern California-based Bomel Construction Co. emerged as the clear winner, earning the right to build a $17.1 million, seven-level parking structure. The design-build project kicks off the school’s 10-year, $800-million capital improvement program. The university is located near the city of San Bernardino.

As the contractor-selection process advanced to the final candidates, Cole said the ultimate choice became a relatively easy one: Bomel was chosen based on the company’s reliability and credibility.

“We’re excited to be working with Bomel Construction on this improvement project that is critical to this institution. We’re looking forward to what is sure to be an amazing finished project,” Cole said.

Construction of the 464,000-sq.-ft. garage starts this month and will be finished by the end of 2013. It will be the third garage on campus; two others in close proximity have a total of about 1,130 stalls. Once it’s completed, the new parking garage will have 1,171 stalls and allow the school to advance to its next phase of expansion: the construction of two multi-story patient towers.

The new garage will be located between Prospect Street and the West Hall building, directly across from the university’s medical center. Erecting the garage is not the only construction phase for Bomel.

“We’ve already removed one road and created another that’s about 600-feet long that will be the entrance to the parking structure,” said Kasey Shay, Bomel’s senior project manager. The new road will be called Victoria Molnar Way.

Five university-owned homes used for various school purposes were abated before Bomel handled their demolition. Bomel is also charged with re-routing all utility and storm drains.

Both Cole and Shay believe a helix ramp is the most interesting part of the parking structure.

Unlike most garages, where cars move from floor to floor within the structure itself, a helix, or spiral, ramp on the outside edge of the garage allows drivers to advance to each floor without actually driving on each floor, a process that has a number of advantages.

“We have three main shift changes every day, so people will be able to get in and out of the garage in a timely fashion,” Cole said. “And most people are creatures of habit; they like to park on the same floor. The helix ramp allows them to go directly to their desired floor without having to trudge through each level. They get to their parking stall faster and in an environmentally-sensitive way since less fuel is burned when vehicles arrive at their destination in less time.”

About 90% of the garage’s users will be Loma Linda University employees. There will be a small area for Emergency Room parking on the first level. Instead of a controlled gate, the garage will have a license plate reader for employees. Guests will pay at a walk-up window.

Shay said Bomel expects to pour the concrete foundation this month. Even though the project is just getting started, Cole likes the path it’s taking.

About Loma Linda University: Located near the city of San Bernardino, Calif., Loma Linda University is a Seventh-day Adventist educational health-sciences institution with more than 4,300 students. Eight schools comprise the University organization. More than 55 programs are offered by the schools of Allied Health Professions, Behavioral Health, Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Public Health and Religion. Curricula offered range from certificates of completion and associate in science degrees to doctor of philosophy and professional doctoral degrees. Students from more than 80 countries around the world and virtually every state in the nation are represented in Loma Linda University’s student body.

About Bomel Construction Co.: Established in 1970, Anaheim Hills, Calif.-based Bomel Construction had $100 million in total revenue in 2011, ranking it as the largest concrete contractor and one of the largest general contractors in California, according to McGraw-Hill Construction. The design-build contractor has completed parking structures and performed structural concrete work for municipalities, casinos, stadiums and large-scale commercial, retail and institutional projects throughout the western U.S. Bomel recently completed a $24-million design-build parking structure complex with a rooftop athletic field for the University of California, San Diego, and a $14.5-million parking structure and pedestrian bridge at the Fullerton Transportation Center in Orange County, Calif. Bomel was recently awarded a design-build contract for a long-anticipated parking structure at Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, Calif. In addition to the corporate office in Anaheim Hills, Bomel has regional offices in Carlsbad, Calif., and Las Vegas.

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