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Department of Engineering and Public Works

Engineering

100 Kellar Avenue
Schenectady, NY 12306
518-356-5344

Paul Sheldon,  Director 
Engineering   

Joe Ryan,  Director
Public Works



MISSION - DEPARTMENT OF ENGINEERING

The mission of the Schenectady County Department of Engineering is to provide the highest quality engineering, survey, technical and construction project management services to county government at the lowest possible cost.

DESCRIPTION OF DEPARTMENT PROGRAMS

The Department of Engineering provides services and activities in the following areas: 
 
Highway Maintenance & Construction: Staff works with the Public Works Department in capital construction operations, including highway contract bidding, contract inspection, design and operations related activities, survey/layout activities and project development. 

Bridge, Culvert & Stormwater Systems Replacement: Prepare design and bid specifications and construction plans for capital budget funded replacement construction at these facilities. 

Health Department Administration: Provide the Environmental Health Department professional engineering assistance and plan review. Law requires a NYS licensed engineer for plan review or for technical consultation by Environmental Health staff. 

Traffic & Transportation Analysis: Review and permitting of land/utility development review activities at the County Highway System, accident investigation. 

Recreation bond program: Design and construction administration for these capital budget items at localities. Construction observation is being provided at the Mohawk Bike-Hike Trail expansion near SCCC. 

Design development and drawings: Major County facility projects including Trustco Building, the Courthouse, County Airport, Social Services site analysis and the Central Library expansion. 

Environmental engineering and analysis: Data collection for the multi-year MS-4 permit required by NYSDEC for storm sewer operation and enforcement at urbanized areas in cooperation with the Planning Department and municipalities. 

New York State Building Code administration: Staff is trained and administers code internally for departmental project compliance with this NYS law.

The County Charter establishes a Department of Engineering and assigns the duties of surveys, design and structural engineering on the County Highway system. The Charter also assigns the engineering director to furnish engineering and other services as assigned by the County Manager.

The department has a primary function providing survey, design, construction management and permit administration for the County Highway System. Where drainage, pavement, curve reconstruction, bridge repair/replacement, or other major physical roadway changes are programmed, work is designed and overseen by staff. Signs and traffic control devices are evaluated and engineered by the department. The Department maintains plans, maps and surveys of county highways and many county facilities making these available for the public. The department also reviews development proposals for work on the 221-mile county highway system, coordinating with the Planning and Health agencies. These reviews range from a simple residential driveway to an extensive utility expansion, involving construction plan review. Permit fees and a deposit or bond is held for the work. A County Highway Work Permit form is found at this website.

A second major function is capital or operational budget construction projects where staff duties include engineering/design and project development together with construction oversight. Staff may collaborate with the responsible county department head and with engineering/architectural consultants. Engineering staff will manage the project consultants and construction contracts on behalf of the County. An example is the construction of the 100 Kellar Avenue, 36,000 square-foot Vehicle Maintenance Facility and Offices completed in 2004. This $2.5 million building was designed and engineered by the county staff except for the HVAC systems.

The Department of Engineering staff provides professional engineering services to the Environmental Health Department. Work accomplished by county engineers includes plan review of realty subdivisions, community water distribution extensions, swimming pools and similar facilities improvements. Licensed engineer review is required for certain permit authorizations and plan reviews. Further, for county construction projects the staff performs the New York State Building Code reviews of plans as required by the state for municipal corporations.

Resources:

The productivity and effectiveness of the department reflects the skills, experience and training of the engineering staff. Staff is the primary resource and the key to success. Four positions are budgeted. The director and senior civil engineer are both NYS licensed professional engineers with broad engineering experience. The engineering technician is a professional development position with inspection, permits and field reviews assigned. The junior civil engineer title is also a licensed professional engineer with a background in private engineering consulting. Staff is committed to quality design and to getting projects completed successfully and within budget.

Staff works out of offices at 100 Kellar Avenue in the town of Rotterdam. Design, drafting, specification writing and surveying capability were improved by the application of technology over the past decade. The county owns a Topcon "total station", which digitally records and tracks survey information that can be downloaded at a PC workstation. Drawings are produced on an engineering plotter. Current software licensed includes four seats for "AutoCAD" drafting/design package.

MISSION - DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS

The mission of the Schenectady County Department of Public Works is to provide safe, responsive and efficient highway systems, recreational areas, and management of the County automotive fleet, and administration of Airports and Public Facilities. 

DESCRIPTION OF DEPARTMENT PROGRAMS

The Department of Public Works provides administration of construction, improvements, maintenance, repair, cleaning and lighting of all highways, roads, bridges, and grade separation structures, drains and drainage structures under jurisdictions of the County as well as providing the administration for the maintenance of equipment and vehicles for the County and City fleet vehicles. Additionally, supervision is provided for the Office of Facilities, as well as the Office of Parks, and County Airport. This Department also facilitates the Intermunicipal Highway Shared Services program. 

New York State Building Code administration: Staff is trained and administers code internally for departmental project compliance with this NYS law. The County Charter establishes a Department of Engineering and assigns the duties of surveys, design and structural engineering on the County Highway system. The Charter also assigns the engineering director to furnish engineering and other services as assigned by the County Manager.

 


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