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August 6, 2019
Community involvement

If you've ever been part of an organized volunteer construction or rehabilitation event, you've probably noticed some of the work was already done when you got there.

Have you ever wondered what happened before you arrived?

Well, a lot of work was probably done by skilled tradespeople to make the site safe for volunteers and to get it to a point that walls can be painted and flowers planted by you and me. A couple months ago, I wrote about our partnership with the Reds Community Fund on a couple of local ball fields. If you drove by our Ross Park construction site recently, you saw the synthetic field being installed, the Palace of the Fans monument being erected, asphalt seal coating and general prep work for painting and all the volunteer efforts. At Bellevue Vets Park, the storm drains, fencing and broadcaster booth were installed. It's exciting to make progress and see our plans come to fruition as we gear up for volunteer day.

Ross-Park-Renovation-Cincinnati-Reds
Image courtesy the Reds Community Fund

Before the volunteers arrive, our team will have rebuilt the dugouts so they are ready to be stained, prepared the project for painting and installed irrigation systems so new plants and trees can be installed, among a list of other work that requires skilled tradespeople.

As the project manager for these projects, it's also a different experience for me to manage a project that culminates in a volunteer effort. Instead of completing the project, I have to think about how to get it to a certain point so volunteers can finish it safely and in the time allowed. For example, installing exercise equipment means purchasing the equipment and mulch, digging out the area to be mulched, and staging the area by ensuring signage is marked, the equipment to install the exercise equipment is onsite and placing the exercise equipment in the proper location - so on volunteer day groups can show up, assemble equipment, dig a hole for a small foundation, install the equipment and mulch the safety area. 

Ross-Park-Planting-Cincinnati-Reds
Image courtesy the Reds Community Fund

We're close; just finished Ross Park and a couple weeks away for Bellevue Vets Park. Events such as this are only successful because of the organizations that put them on. I continue to be impressed with how the Reds Community Fund serves as a role model to other teams across Major League Baseball and challenges us all to give back. Just since I've been working with them, they've touched six different communities including Avondale, Seven Hills in the West End, Walnut Hills and now St. Bernard and Bellevue, Kentucky.

About the Author

Greg-Speidel-PepperConstruction

Greg SpeidelSenior Project Manager, Ohio

With nearly 20 years in the industry, Greg specializes in civic, cultural and entertainment construction markets.  He enjoys working with owners and architects to provide creative solutions for their one-of-a-kind projects.  Throughout his tenure, Greg has played an instrumental role in more than a dozen LEED certified projects. Most recently, Greg has worked with the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden to maintain their reputation as the "Greenest Zoo in America."  Other notable projects include the Newport Aquarium's Stingray Hideaway and the University of Cincinnati's Stratford Heights mixed use project.

Greg holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from The University of Toledo.  His passion to improve communities through entertainment and cultural enrichment does not stop once the projects are complete.  Greg is an active member of the Reds Community Fund -helping in this year's coordination of volunteers and construction schedules for the Fund's field renovation projects. In addition, he participates in the annual Little Miami River Clean up and Lincoln Heights Missionary Baptist Church food drives.