San Jose/Monterey, Calif., Nov. 13, 2019 – Blach Construction (Blach), a full-service and award-winning commercial builder serving the Greater Bay Area and Monterey since 1970, is thrilled to announce that the Bechtel Family Center for Ocean Education and Leadership (Bechtel Education Center) has been named a 2019 “Best Project” in the Cultural/Worship category by Engineering News-Record California and has received the 2019 “Structures Award” for Community Impact from the Silicon Valley Business Journal.
“It was an honor to be entrusted with building the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s much-anticipated education center,” said Dan Rogers, Blach president. “Our project team went above and beyond, navigating numerous and varied complexities throughout the duration of this project – from the Bechtel Center’s busy location to its intricate and necessary sea life support systems. As a result, we delivered a building that will inspire and expand awareness of ocean education amongst today’s youth and tomorrow’s leaders for years to come. And to be recognized within our industry for it is even more gratifying.”
The four-story 25,500 square-foot concrete and glass Bechtel Education Center includes four learning laboratories, collaborative teaching and office space, and a fourth-floor event space with a native plant roof garden. A street-level exhibit gallery is open and free to the public. To bring the intricate and diverse building to life, the Blach project team relied heavily on 3D modeling, laser scanning and robotic layout to carefully plan, coordinate and execute the installation of the complex systems within the Bechtel Education Center’s open-concept spaces. For example, the learning laboratories boast eight 200-gallon saltwater tanks operating as part of a closed system used to maintain the correct temperature and living conditions for the intertidal creatures occupying them.
For its annual “Best Projects” program, Engineering News-Record California seeks projects that display a diverse range of skills, creativity and expertise required to produce structures that stretch design and construction skills to outperform existing construction norms. Similarly, the Silicon Valley Business Journal’s “Structures Awards” celebrate the best of regional real estate projects within several categories targeting different structural elements or structural purposes each year.
About Blach Construction
Founded in 1970, Blach Construction builds structures of enduring quality and value throughout the Greater Bay Area and Monterey. The company’s experience encompasses a broad cross-section of workplace, education, institutional and mixed-use building types, including technology, life sciences, professional services, healthcare, K-12 and higher education and civic/community facilities. A leading innovator, Blach is dedicated to continually incorporating advanced construction techniques, leveraging prefabrication, self-perform and virtual design and construction capabilities, while investing in new offerings and project delivery methods that enable greater efficiencies and bring increased value to clients.
The firm consistently wins awards across the construction industry and general business community for its projects, innovation, employee engagement and community service. Recently named the #1 “Best Place to Work” in the Bay Area (in the midsize category) by the Silicon Valley Business Journal/San Francisco Business Times, Blach has appeared on the list for 11 years running. The firm has received multiple “Construction Safety Excellence Awards” from the AGC of California, has been named a top 30 “Great Place to Work” by Fortune Magazine and ranked as a “Top Contractor in California” by Engineering News-Record.