WRECO Pre-2010 News

WRECO Uses Non-standard Drainage Design
December 2009

State Route 12 Jameson Canyon

WRECO overcame environmental challenges using non-standard drainage systems during the drainage design for the State Route 12 Jameson Canyon Road Widening Project. Challenges included meeting 100 percent treatment within an environmentally sensitive corridor and maximizing hydromodification mitigation. The drainage design cost was $3.4M for the Napa segment and $3.6M for the Solano segment, with a total construction cost of $105M.

WRECO's Oakland Office Becomes a Green Business
October 2009


The WRECO Oakland office obtained its Bay Area Green Business certification in November. Meeting the requirements was an expansion of what the Oakland staff were already doing, such as taking public transportation and using recycled content paper. Some of the requirements included using energy efficient equipment, putting low-flow aerators in the kitchen and bathroom sinks, and installing light sensors. WRECO is committed to green business practices, and the Oakland staff have created other ways to keep the business green such as making scratch paper pads and having a designated reuse zone for folders and binder clips.

Recognizing - Environmental Values At Work
April 2009

GB District 3 Group

WRECO attended this year's Contra Costa Green Business Program Recognition Ceremony held at the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors in Martinez, California. It was a pleasure to meet our fellow Contra Costa County green businesses and properly applaud the program and its members for all of their efforts and achievements. WRECO is honored to be involved with such a great group of environmentally friendly contributors. Mary N. Piepho, District 3 Supervisor, can be seen in the above photo, along with WRECO's president, Dr. Han-Bin Liang.

WRECO Maintains a Strong Presence in the field of Stormwater BMPs
November 2008

As part of the Brown and Caldwell Team, WRECO will perform as needed technical and professional services on a three-year Caltrans Headquarters (District 43) Stormwater Statewide Design Training Manuals contract. We look forward to contributing to the upcoming task order assignments.

WRECO's Walnut Creek Office is now Green Business Certified!
November 2008

GBC with Claudia

WRECO, a leading provider of hydrology/hydraulic engineering, water resources and coastal engineering, is now a certified Green Business in Contra Costa County.

WRECO employees pledge their commitment to maintain our goal of incorporating green practices into our everyday efforts, always keeping the future in mind. Some of the adjustments to our operations include: using recycled paper products, conserving energy by using efficient lighting/heating/AC practices, and integrating other environmentally friendly products into our daily routine. WRECO would like to thank Ms. Robin Bedell-Waite and Ms. Claudia Pingatore, of the Contra Costa County Green Business Program for their continued guidance on green business practices.

California Stormwater Quality Association (CASQA) 2008 4th Annual Conference, Marriot City Center Hotel, Oakland, CA
September 2008

CASQA Conference

WRECO participated in this year's CASQA Conference as an exhibitor, displaying our booth for over 500 attendees, including vendors and speakers. Our senior staff also attended various workshops and track sessions throughout the three-day conference. The event was a great success that allowed WRECO to highlight some of our proudest moments in water resources engineering.

Dr. Han-Bin Liang wins the 2008 CAEPA "Outstanding Member"
March 2008

CAEPA Members

Our president, Dr. Han-Bin Liang, recently won the 2008 award for the Chinese American Environmental Professional's Association (CAEPA) "Outstanding Member" due to his strong, consistent support for the organization. CAEPA is a San Francisco Bay Area-based nonprofit organization comprising professionals, educators, and others who are concerned about improving the environment.

Dr. Han-Bin Liang has been a CAEPA member for more than a decade and has served on the CAEPA board for 6 years. He has committed to long-term support for the CAEPA scholarship program as well as CAEPA operations generally. He was a sponsor of the 2005 World Environmental Day exhibition and he promotes the CAEPA membership campaign. He was instrumental in the creation of the CAEPA web site, which is currently maintained by WRECO employees.

2D Hydrodynamic Modeling of Floodplains
January 2008

Preliminary Results-2D

WRECO is using the FLO 2-D model to simulate flooding around San Luis Obispo Creek and Prefumo Creek in the City of San Luis Obispo. This work is being done for RRM Design.

WRECO and Caltrans District 4 Together Again
January 2008

Devil's Slide

WRECO was selected as the consultant for the Caltrans District 4 Professional Water Quality Studies and Technical Services Contract worth $5 million for a duration of three years. This new contract further strengthens WRECO's relationship with Caltrans District 4.

Wave Study for 1 Seawall Design, Ventura County
October 2007

Ventura Seawall

Due to corrosion and deterioration, two failing seawalls along Highway 1 in Ventura County will be replaced, in association with Caltrans Headquarters Structures Division. WRECO performed a wave climate study and design hydraulic analysis for Caltrans' structural engineers in order to assist them in their design for the proposed seawalls.

Physical Modeling of Folsom Dam Auxiliary Spillway
June 2007

Folsom Dam Spillway

Sacramento has the greatest risk of flooding of any major city in the country. Folsom Dam, located on the American River, about 20 miles northeast of Sacramento, CA, was built in 1950 based on previous records of historic flows in the American River. It now appears that the quantity of water from the Sierra Nevada Mountains has increased during large floods. Furthermore, early levees were not constructed to current engineering standards. As part of the public safety effort, WRECO is working with St. Anthony's Falls Laboratory at the University of Minnesota on a physical modeling study of the proposed auxiliary spillway which includes a gated control structure, chute, a stepped spillway and a stilling basin.

2007 Tranny Awards
June 2007

WRECO is the proud team member of two Tranny Awards for our project teams' exceptional work on Interchange 880 Coleman Avenue Interchange in the City of San Jose and Maxwell Bridge Project for the City of Napa. URS Corporation was the primary consultant for the winning projects. The Tranny Awards are sponsored by the California Transportation Foundation (CTF), a non-profit organization that recognizes outstanding performances and achievement in transportation.

WRECO Helps Prevent Flooding at the EBMUD Water Treatment Plant
May 2007

North Lane watershed Orinda

The North Lane in Orinda has been subject to several floods in recent years. The flood area has included the EBMUD (East Bay Municipal Utilities District) Water Treatment Plant that supplies water to over 1 million people. The City of Orinda contracted WRECO to analyze storm water drainage systems. WRECO proposed new designs for drainage improvements that include detention basins and a storm drain bypass line which will help protect the EBMUD Water Treatment Plant and local residences from flooding.

WRECO Helps Reduce Traffic Congestion in Santa Cruz County
April 2007


WRECO is working with the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission to deal with current and future travel demands and congestion along Highway 1 in Santa Cruz County. Alternatives include adding auxiliary lanes or widening the existing four-lane highway to a six-lane facility by adding an HOV lane, which will encourage ridesharing and transit use. These proposed solutions improve traffic operations and reduce delay. Thay may also reduce congestion-related accidents.

WRECO Works with State and Federal Agencies to Improve Road Safety in San Diego County
April 2007


In San Diego County, the winding roads of State Route 94, combined with the presence of large trucks and other vehicles, have created traffic congestion and hazardous traffic conditions. The existing roads have geometrically inadequate curves and limited maneuvering areas for trucks to make turns. WRECO is working with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the Federal Highway Administration to improve traffic operations and promote traffic safety by proposing realignment of road segments and improving lane geometrics.

WRECO Lends a Hand to Los Altos Hills
March 2007

Los Altos Hills

WRECO is currently working on a sewer system expansion study for the Town of Los Altos Hills. Approximately half of the town currently relies on septic tanks. WRECO is helping Public Works Director Henry Louie upgrade this system. By conducting initial analysis, WRECO will provide Los Altos Hills with a phased expansion improvement plan that meets their budget as well as their environmental and infrastructural needs.

WRECO Helps Protect Habitat for Endangered Species
February 2007

State Route 116

WRECO is working with Joseph Peterson of Caltrans District 4 Hydraulics in order to preserve the California Tiger Salamander habitat along State Route 116. This species has been in decline for several reasons, including loss of habitat due to development. WRECO will provide drainage recommendations that incorporate this additional concern. WRECO has already made significant progress with its designs.

WRECO Welcomes Analette Ochoa
January 2007

WRECO Welcomes Analette Ochoa

WRECO welcomes Analette Ochoa to our team. She is our newest Senior Associate and our first female supervisor. Mrs. Ochoa brings to us 14 years of experience at Caltrans, including, most recently, 4 years as the District 4 Storm Water Coordinator.

WRECO Gives Fish a Chance
January 2007


WRECO recently helped Jon Frye and Matt Griffin of Santa Barbara County Flood Control District balance the County's development and ecological needs. The County's existing dam and debris basin on Gobernador Canyon Creek prevented fish passage; this barrier prohibited the upstream migration of Steelhead Trout and interfered with their breeding process. WRECO's engineers provided a solution: a functional debris basin which allows safe passage for fish.

WRECO Takes the Water out of Napa Airport
December 2006

Napa Airport Figure

To identify the source of flooding at Napa County Municipal Airport, WRECO was selected to conduct a holistic evaluation of airport drainage. WRECO is completing this task by assessing the entire site. This includes analysis of: the drainage basin, on-site facilities, on-site and off-site detention systems, and tidal impact on local water bodies. WRECO's final report will offer multiple options to remedy existing and potential flooding issues.

WRECO Rises to the Challenge
April 2006

Orinda Grove Site Visit

A challenging new project, Orinda Grove, allowed WRECO to gain experience with the sophisticated C-3 storm water treatment requirements. Pulte Homes wished to construct a residential development in Orinda but the City was concerned about exacerbating potential flooding. WRECO provided hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, including examination of Storm Drain System Capacity, Storm Water Detention Requirements, and Storm Water Quality Treatment Requirements. WRECO's suggested treatment plans complied with C-3 regulations and offered a solution to Pulte Homes.

WRECO Tells Caltrans, Save Gas; Just Flush It!?
October 2005

Waldo Tunnel

WRECO is working with Caltrans to develop new drainage strategies for the Tunnel Wash Water NPDES. The wash water is accumulated from cleaning the Waldo Tunnel in Marin County, and Alameda County's Alameda - Webster and Posey Tubes. WRECO has developed alternatives to Caltrans usual technique of disposal, which is filling tanker trucks and hauling the wash water to East Bay Municipal Utility District's Treatment Plant. Alternatives proposed by WRECO include the direct discharge of wash water to the sanitary sewer systems or to a storage box for easy maintenance access. WRECO also is preparing Project Study Reports and cost estimates for the alternative options proposed to Caltrans.

WRECO Helps BART Pick its New Ride
September, 2005

BART Train

WRECO has joined forces with PGH Wong Engineering to provide BART with preliminary and conceptual engineering for the eBART Project. For this project, BART is trying to decide between three choices for their transporting needs, choices being a regular BART train, Diesel Multiple Units (rail cars) or buses. BART must first decide its mode of transportation before they announce BART's expansion, as they are contingent on the vehicle that is chosen.

WRECO Helps the Bay Area and BART Get Ready for The Big One?
August 2005


WRECO is currently working with Bechtel and HNTB on BART's Earthquake Safety Program. This project spans across the entire 4 original BART lines and focuses on BART's aerial structures. WRECO is performing utility studies and preparing conceptual relocation plans so the piers, which hold up these aerial structures, can be retrofitted and provide the community with a safer way to commute within the earthquake prone Bay Area.

WRECO Team Ups with Caltrans District 3 so Lake Tahoe Stays Blue
June 2005


WRECO is presently working with Mark Thomas & Co, Inc. by providing storm water drainage plans, specifications and estimates for Caltrans District 3, State Route 28 along the north shore of Lake Tahoe. Key storm water facilities designed by WRECO include sand vaults and sand traps, which are used for trapping traction sand.

WRECO Continues Work with Caltrans District 4 Hydraulics
January 2005

WRECO was awarded a $4 million contract to provide Caltrans District 4 with four years of Hydraulic On-call Services. WRECO will continue to work as an extension to the Caltrans District 4 Hydraulics staff.

WRECO is Helping with the Design of BART to San Jose
December 2004

WRECO is currently working with HNTB and BKF on the Silicon Valley Rapid Transit (SVRT) Corridor Project, which extends BART to San Jose. The project is funded by the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA).

Associated California Engineers (ACE) Wins U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Contract
November 2004

Associated California Engineers (ACE), a joint venture between MGE Engineering and WRECO, won the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District's Small Business Set-aside Hydrologic and Hydraulic IDIQ Contract.

WRECO Helps Bring Steelhead up Alameda Creek
October 2004

WRECO is currently working on the feasibility study and conceptual design of the Alameda Creek/BART Weir Fish Passage with and FarWest Restoration Engineering. The project is funded by the California Coastal Conservancy.

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