South Street Pump Station Emergency Generator Replacement Project

The Village of Suffern owns and operates a pump station, located on South Street, as part of the sanitary sewer collection system. This pump station is the largest within the collection system and serves as the primary pump station. The pump station is located within the floodway of the floodplain, and received significant damage during Hurricane Irene, which also had a direct impact on the emergency generator.

KC was responsible for providing engineering consulting services for the project, which included performing site and existing condition investigations and preparing design documents, specifications, and the engineering cost estimate. KC also provided bid phase services, including preparation of bid and contract documents.

The scope of construction work included removal of the existing generator, all associated accessories, and the transfer switch; installation of a 150-kilowatt (kW) generator and automatic transfer switch; reconnection of the new generator to the existing control panels; and installation of all wiring, conduit, and appurtenances to and from the new generator to provide a complete and functional backup power generation system.

Adirondack Welcome Center

As part of a Regional Design Services Agreement (RDSA), this project served to construct a new I-87 northbound welcome center in West Glens Falls. The new facility replaced an existing rest area in excess of 25 years old. The new Adirondack Welcome Center included construction of a new building with parking lot and boat inspection areas, lighting, a new septic system, waterline work, and utility upgrades.

As subconsultant, KC was responsible for assisting New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) with reviewing and reapplying for New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES), water connection system, and septic system permitting.

KC also provided detailed design for water supply, wastewater septic, and stormwater systems; design survey and mapping for confirmation of existing infrastructure; preliminary building and site construction cost estimating; and existing utilities identification and coordination. KC also developed site drainage, sanitary system, and grading design alternatives; identified existing drainage basins to determine the impact of proposed construction on erosion and sedimentation; developed the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP); and prepared cross sections to outline existing ground and proposed roadway surfaces.

African-American Pioneers in Engineering

Walter Braithwaite/Seattle Times

Howard Grant/
George Biddle Kelley /
Elijah Mccoy/


February is African-American History Month. As such, it is the perfect opportunity to highlight the engineering achievements of African-Americans who, although they may have contended with racism, societal inequality, and discrimination, worked hard to overcome obstacles and accomplished great things in the field of engineering.

Walter Braithwaite, an American engineer who was born in Jamaica, was hired by Boeing in 1966. As Senior Engineer, he led the team that invented CAD systems for designing commercial Boeing aircraft. Over the years, Braithwaite rose through the ranks, eventually becoming President of Boeing Africa. When he retired in 2003, he was the highest ranking African-American executive of the company.

Howard P. Grant graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1948, making him the first African-American to graduate from the Berkeley College of Engineering. That same year, Grant also became the first known African-American member of the American Society of Civil Engineers. He subsequently became the first African-American civil engineer for the City and County of San Francisco and the second African-American civil engineer to be licensed by California. He worked in the San Francisco water department until 1984, and also held the position of president and treasurer of the California Society of Professional Engineers.

George Biddle Kelley graduated from Cornell University’s College of Civil Engineering in 1908. He went on to become the first African-American engineer registered in the state of New York. He was hired by the New York Engineering Department, where he worked on the Barge Canal, a collection of state waterways, during the 1920s.

Elijah McCoy was born in Canada in 1844 to runaway slaves who had escaped Kentucky thought the Underground Railroad. At the age of 15, he moved to Edinburgh, Scotland for an apprenticeship. There, he became certified in mechanical engineering. Upon leaving Scotland, he moved to Michigan, where his family was now living. After being unable to find engineering work in Michigan because of his race, he found a job as a fireman with the Michigan Central Railroad. Part of his duties included oiling the steam engine parts. Soon McCoy had invented an automatic engine lubricator, which meant that trains were no longer required to stop for lubrication. The lubrication could now occur while the train was moving. As news of the invention spread, many inventors attempted to create their own version of the automatic lubricator. However, it was soon discovered that McCoy’s invention was superior. It is said that railway engineers began requested “the real McCoy” lubricator. McCoy filed a total of almost 60 patents, including designs for an ironing board, a lawn sprinkler, and other machines.

5 Engineers You Should Know About

Gustave Eiffel


George Stephenson


Isambard Kingdom Brunel


Thomas Andrews


John Augustus Roebling


1. Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923): A renowned French civil engineer and architect, Gustave Eiffel is remembered as “the Magician of Iron.” Can you guess which famous iron structure this magician cast? Indeed, his masterpiece is the Eiffel Tower. During and after its construction, thinkers of the time criticized the tower’s ambitious design. Some even protested the tower, claiming Eiffel was blatantly disregarding the principles of physics to create an artistic form. However, his design for what was then to be the tallest tower in the world accounted for the real-world conditions that it would need to withstand:

Is it not true that the very conditions which give strength also conform to the hidden rules of harmony? … Now to what phenomenon did I have to give primary concern in designing the Tower? It was wind resistance. Well then! I hold that the curvature of the monument's four outer edges, which is as mathematical calculation dictated it should be … will give a great impression of strength and beauty, for it will reveal to the eyes of the observer the boldness of the design as a whole. – Gustave Eiffel

Thanks to both Eiffel’s genius and his boldness, the Eiffel Tower today enjoys a coveted spot on the list of the Seven Wonders of the World, and it remains a veritable global icon.

2. George Stephenson (1781-1848): George Stephenson revolutionized transportation and urban infrastructure by creating the world’s first public inter-city railway line that used steam locomotives. This British Engineer, often referred to as “The Father of Railways,” is also credited with devising the historic measurement of the rail gauge at four feet eight-and-a-half inches, which became the standard railway gauge measurement worldwide.

3. Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-1859): A celebrated experimenter and risk-taker, Isambard Kingdom Brunel was the man behind the Great Western Railway, the company that connected London to the west part of England. His unconventional thinking led him to many firsts: from being the first engineer to envision building a tunnel under a river to playing a key role in the development of the first propeller-driven iron ship.

4. Thomas Andrews (1873-1912): Thomas Andrews was the principal architect for the infamous RMS Titanic. He was aboard the ship during its maiden—and only—voyage in 1912, and when the ship hit an iceberg, he calculated that it would sink within a few short hours. Survivors’ accounts tell of Andrews bravely alerting passengers of the imminent danger, urging women and children to board the severely limited number of lifeboats. Andrews was also said to have suggested more than twice the number of lifeboats the Titanic was given and a double hull and watertight bulkheads during planning and construction, suggestions which were rejected. He perished in the ship’s sinking, a harsh lesson in the consequences of industrial hubris, prioritizing profit over safety.

5. John Augustus Roebling (1806-1869): A Prussian immigrant renowned for his suspension bridge designs, John Augustus Roebling discovered a method of twisting iron together to create a “wire rope,” which he manufactured and used to construct durable suspension bridges. One of the most famous projects he designed was the Brooklyn Bridge. Unfortunately, he sustained an injury in an on-site accident that resulted in a fatal case of tetanus before the bridge could be completed.

Bonus! – Emily Warren Roebling (1843-1903) and Washington Roebling (1837-1926): Emily Warren Roebling broke down gender barriers while building the Brooklyn Bridge. Hailing from the Hudson Valley, she studied engineering in Europe alongside her husband Washington Roebling, the son of John Augustus Roebling. Washington took over as Chief Engineer following his father’s death, but he soon developed caisson disease and became too ill to work. Emily then stepped in as “the first woman field engineer.” She carried out many of Washington’s duties, overseeing construction until the bridge’s completion in 1883.

Engineers Were Celebrated During National Engineers Week

Last week was National Engineers Week!

This week-long event recognized engineers as a central asset to our world and celebrated their “positive contributions to quality of life,” according to the National Society of Engineers.

Engineers created structures like the Hoover Dam, the Panama Canal, and even the Great Wall of China! Without engineers, these massive and impressive feats would have never come to be.

Founded by the National Society of Professional Engineers in 1951, National Engineers Week has coincided for over 50 years with the week of President George Washington’s birthday (February 22nd) to pay homage to the nation’s first engineer. Washington was introduced to engineering at an early age, often partaking in land surveying opportunities and ultimately going on to design a country estate on a plantation he’d inherited — Mount Vernon.

Each year, DiscoverE, an organization focused on supporting and promoting growth of the engineering and technology communities, encourages children to explore the STEM community through interactive lessons, child-friendly activities, and involvement with their own local engineering communities.

Across the nation in cities like Port Jefferson, New York; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Los Angeles, California; DiscoverE hosts a series of workshops and presentations to promote the importance of engineering. Children are able to meet and speak with veteran engineers, participate in fun, educational activities, and learn about the global scale of engineered contributions.

For more information on upcoming STEM events sponsored by DiscoverE, visit