Project Profile: Garden Features Native Plants, Hardscape Elements
Winter is a busy time for Holysz and his crew, but he uses the non-winter months to take care of projects the department simply does not have time for when snow is falling. For example, Holysz has a three-man concrete crew that does nothing but tackle deferred maintenance from May through August. Holysz bids out the demolition work, and then his crew handles the finishing and restoration.
The campus features roughly 24 miles of roads, 125 acres of parking lots, 39 miles of sidewalks, and more than 600 entrances. With that much hard-surface area, it is no wonder the concrete crew currently has almost $500,000 in repairs.
"A lot of (work orders) come from our environmental health and safety (department)," Holysz says. "When I start getting safety work orders generated from injuries, we really take a hard look at those particular areas. If it's a (one-time accident) where someone tripped and fell, we always investigate the area where the person got hurt."
A landmark project the department completed recently is Haenicke Gardens, a memorial honoring a former university president. The garden includes plants native to the president's hometown in Germany, a bronze sculpture, a small fountain, a bench, and a variety of annuals and perennials.
Holysz's team also is rebuilding a downtown bus terminal that happens to sit on a university parking lot.
"We're in the process of redoing a bus-station stop," he says. "We're adding quite a number of benches, tables, and carousel tables and redesigning the area, making it more appealing for the kids as they get dropped off and picked up."