Supply stands with all of our friends and neighbors around West Virginia that
were affected by the recent floods. Our hearts go out to the families that lost
loved ones and to those who lost their homes and or parts of their property. We
are working hard to help those that we can and to provide products in an
expedited fashion so goods and services can be delivered to the affected areas.
We appointed Kerry Cole our “Special
Projects Coordinator” as the lead person to head up the flood recovery effort
here at Foster Supply Inc. Within a week of the deadly flooding Foster Supply
and Kerry Cole were able to join with our employees, customers and vendors to
deliver a complete tractor trailer load of much needed supplies to the towns of
Nallen and Russellville in Fayette County. Supplies included everything from
shovels, wheelbarrows, pressure washers, food, bedding and towels to water, can
openers, totes, coolers and utility knives. The cleanup has just begun and we
are still working hard to make sure this long term effort continues.
Union Mission is also utilizing one
of our trailers and having our tractors and drivers to deliver units for them
when they are short on haulers. The need is greater than most realize and will
take months or longer to fulfill. To date Kerry has been able to raise over
$34,000 in the Foster Supply flood recovery effort. That figure includes cash,
donated materials, vendor discounts and in-kind contributions.
We want to thank each and every
person and company that has helped in this effort. It is great to know what
wonderful employees, customers and vendors that we have the privilege to work
with each and every day.
Foster Supply Inc has increased
inventory levels in products that will commonly be used in flood recovery
efforts including but not limited to large diameter pipe, wire basket gabions,
retaining wall blocks and concrete lagging. Please contact our locations
nearest to you for all your requirements.
President and CEO
Foster Supply Inc.
Foster Supply had a very successful year with the launch of our new wall system Verti-Block leading the way. Verti-Block is a large block wall system that has a hollow core allowing a controlled amount of stone to be placed for drainage. It also is designed where the underdrain pipe is placed directly on the stone footer and held in place by the blocks themselves. This prevents gravel from displacing the underdrain pipe which may result in poor drainage. Foster Supply introduced this product line at its Harrodsburg production facility in the first quarter of last year. Since then we have already had to double our production capacity to meet demand. The architectural beauty of the product along with the ease of installation makes it the perfect wall system for specifying agencies and installers alike.
Verti-Block has been readily accepted by architects and engineers across our region and is one of our fastest growing product lines. Please be on the lookout for our new product launch here in West Virginia in the third quarter of this year. We are encouraging our specifying agencies to include it in their current specifications along with Redi-Rock which we produce at three different locations including Scott Depot, and Nutter Fort in West Virginia along with our London operation in Kentucky. Redi-Rock has been the leader in the industry for years and we are proud of the successes that we have had with that product as well.
Foster Supply Inc. is proud to announce that Orders Construction won an award for flatwork on the I-64 and I-77 project in Kanawha County, West Virginia that utilized “Super Slab” panels produced at our Sissonville precast plant. We are currently teamed up with them again on a West Virginia Turnpike project utilizing precast bridge deck and barrier wall combination pieces that will have transverse joints poured in the field. The entire deck will take about 7 days to replace in a first of a kind operation in West Virginia. Stay tuned for more information on the amazing project.
Spring is here and as always trucks will be in short supply as the construction season kicks off. Please plan as far in advance as you can so we can meet the needs of our customers.
Foster Supply Inc. is pleased to announce our newest employee. Paul Filipiak will join us as our new Project Engineer. Many of our customers already know Paul from his days at Contech Construction Products. Here is a short Bio on Paul:
Paul was born and raised in the Chicago area, Paul graduated from the University of Illinois with a BS in Finance. He spent several years working in the railroad industry before finding his way to West Virginia in 1986. During his 24 year career as a Sales Engineer at Contech, Paul earned a BS in Construction Management from West Virginia State College and a BS in Civil Engineering Technology from WVU Institute of Technology. Paul is a Registered Professional Engineer in the state of Virginia. He lives in St. Albans with his wife, Robin, and sons Chance and Caleb.
Paul will be responsible for technical training, seminars and new product development for Foster Supply Inc. We will continue to expand the services and products offered by our plant at Sissonville that was recently acquired from Old Castle Precast. Foster Supply is committed to producing quality products that can be precast at a lower cost than they can be poured in the field.
Foster Supply Inc. will continue to focus growth in the precast concrete products including manholes, catch basins, storm structures, lift stations, wing walls, lightweight aggregate concrete products, precast post tensioned bridge decks, box culverts, wing walls and much more.
The first Super Slab project in the state of West Virginia is currently being produced at our Sissonville plant. Orders Construction will start installing the product late in May or early in June. We will have more about the project in a future blog. Stay tuned.
Spring is coming soon
This is the time of the year we need to start planning for our upcoming projects. Foster Supply has a fleet of delivery vehicles but cannot always meet the demands of all customers when spring breaks. This year will be even worse than usual due to the harsh winter. Many jobs have been delayed and once the weather breaks everyone will need materials at the same time.
Our customers will need to plan ahead as much as possible to prevent any potential delays in receiving materials. This is especially important on projects where there are significant numbers of trucks required to service the site. Retaining wall projects and projects with large quantities of manholes and catch basins are usually affected the most by trucking issues.
All customers should be aware that there may be times when Foster Supply cannot deliver all materials on our fleet. We are happy to contract outside haulers should they be necessary however, the rates may be higher. When outside haulers are authorized by our customers, the customer will be billed the difference from what is on our quote using our trucks versus the outside hauler rates.
We are looking forward to spring and the opportunity to serve all of our customer’s needs in the timeliest manner possible.
Ron R. Foster
Foster Supply Inc., is proud to introduce its newest product line. Foster Supply the leader in Big Block production for Kentucky, West Virginia and Ohio has teamed up with Verti-Crete out of Sandy, Utah to provide the Verti-Block retaining wall system to our service area.
Verti-Block offers many advantages over other Big Block systems. The blocks have a hollow core that allows the contractor to place a specific amount of gravel in each block. This reduces the amount of stone needed and allows for the use of site suitable material to be placed directly in contact with the backs of the block. Each block has a notch across the bottom to allow for the placement of the drain pipe right in the base of the block thus assuring the release of any build up hydrostatic pressure.
Installers love the product because it weighs less than other Big Blocks and they place 8 SF per block while other Big Blocks are 5.75 SF each or less. Installers use less stone and are able to more accurately determine the amount of stone that is required. They have fewer delivery trucks to schedule because more square footage can be hauled per truck. Saving on freight also saves on the overall installation cost. Due to the lighter weight blocks there are many jobs that allow installations to be done with smaller equipment than other Big Block systems.
The engineers and owners also love the product, not only because of the lower cost but also because of being able to build gravity walls higher. There are many applications where property boundaries do not allow the use of grid. In certain conditions Verti-Block can be engineered up to 24’ tall as a gravity wall without the use of geogrid reinforcement. Foster Supply also offers multi-color staining of the final product that will closely match other building materials located on the site.
For your next retaining wall application, call our main office at 304-755-8241 and ask for Joe Pingley. He will guide you through the process with our estimators and engineers.
New Year and New Products
Foster Supply had a great year in 2014. The acquisition of the Oldcastle facility in Sissonville (formerly the Package System Plant) has added a tremendous amount of options for our customers. We have the capability to precast almost anything under 40,000#. If our customers want something poured in the shop that is too time consuming or costly to do in the field we have a wide variety of panel forms to do those projects. We can speed up the time of construction at a lower cost in most instances.
This year we will be introducing new products such as precast Light Pole Bases, Sound Walls, precast concrete Screen Walls and Fencing plus additional Retaining Wall alternates. Foster Supply will also be introducing precast Maintenance Platforms for Hi-Mast Lighting on WVDOH projects as well as precast concrete Valve Pads for protection of PVC cleanouts and valve boxes. The company will continue to expand into larger WVDOH wing wall structures for pipe sizes up to 72”.
Foster Supply is always looking for new products that will assist customers on their projects. Customers are encouraged to bring new ideas to the staff so we can develop solutions to the customer’s problems.
We look forward to working with our valued customers throughout 2015 and beyond.
For more information on new products ask your Foster Supply representative or visit us at www.fostersupply.com, click on the “Find Us” tab and contact the production location nearest to your project.
Cold Weather and concrete products.
As cold weather sets in Foster Supply would like to remind everyone how the weather affects our concrete products. As the weather turns colder it takes longer to do a lot of tasks at Foster Supply. Our rebar shop takes a little longer to produce the same amount of materials due to the effects of cold weather on the men and equipment. Our facilities are not heated so the guys have to put in some tough hours on cold days.
Our precast facility is heated and in most cases we are able to pour concrete, however if it gets bitterly cold the plant won’t operate so there could be production delays. The best approach to winter work is to give Foster Supply your work orders in advance. We will produce the product when weather permits and have it in stock and waiting for you when you need it. Don’t wait till the last minute because you never know when the next cold snap may hit.
Most of our concrete products cure inside long enough to meet the required strengths before shipping however some items go into inventory prior to reaching 4000 PSI that means in cold weather the product may need to set a few extra days so make sure to enter the orders early.
For those contractors who pour concrete in cold weather we can provide insulation blankets. Blankets alone may not be enough to avoid getting delayed sets so the contractor should follow all the latest ACI standards for cold weather cooling including adding heat if necessary. If you use heat it is a good idea to use a quality cure and seal that can be provided by Foster Supply.
For more information on cold weather concreting as your Foster Supply representative or visit us at www.fostersupply.com, click on the “Find Us” tab and contact the production location nearest to your project.
Redi-Rock PC Walls Allow for Taller Walls with Higher Factor of Safety
Foster Supply Inc., (FSI) is proud of the roll out of our Redi-Rock “Positive Connection” (PC) system for retaining walls. FSI has completed its conversion to the PC system and we are now providing the system exclusively from our Harrodsburg and London Kentucky plants along with our Teays Valley and Nutter Fort plants in West Virginia. The PC system allows for taller walls with a higher factor of safety in the most critical area. In the upper one third of the wall the PC system adds 2.5 to 4 times the additional factor of safety when compared with traditional segmental block walls.
The West Virginia Department of Highways was one of the first to use the new system and were so pleased with it that they required a complete conversion to the new system in 2014. The oil and gas industry has also jumped on board. The PC system allows them to build much higher walls with the factors of safety that are so important in that particular industry. We have attached a few photos of projects that have opted for the PC system.
Engineers see the value immediately in the PC system. It gives them a higher factor of safety in their design at approximately the same cost. PC blocks also allow engineers to go more vertical on their wall design to keep projects out of streams and creeks while utilizing more of the valuable land the projects are built upon.
For more information on the PC system visit us at www.fostersupply.com, click on the “Find Us” tab and contact the production location nearest to your project.
First MSE Wall for Foster Supply in West Virginia
Foster Supply teamed up with Sine Wall to produce our first MSE wall in the state of West Virginia. MSE walls are panel walls approximately 6-8” thick and 5’ wide x 10’ long with a steel grid reinforcing that extends back into the fill utilizing the weight of the soil to make a Mechanically Stabilized Earth retaining wall with a thin concrete face on it. Any type of face may be used on the walls depending on the type of form liner that is utilized.
The WVDOH project at Thomas Buford Pugh Memorial Bridge called for the use of this type of MSE wall. Orders Construction was the successful bidder and utilized the Sine Wall system that was precast at our Sissonville plant. The project had multiple walls totaling nearly 5200 SF with an Ashler Face texture plus 240’ of coping. The coping is an inverted U shaped unit that goes over the top of the wall to give it a nice finished look.
The project is located in Raleigh County West Virginia and it is proceeding on schedule with more than half of it completed. This is an interesting project with limited access. Sine Wall was the perfect product for this job and Foster Supply kept the project on track with timely delivery. If you have applications for this project or would like additional information please contact our sales staff at 304-755-8241.
Preparing for the Fall Rush
The fall rush is on. Traditionally September and October are the busiest months for Foster Supply. As winter approaches everyone puts on a last ditch push to get projects out of the ground before the weather changes. Each year this presents a challenge for us at Foster Supply to meet all the schedules for our customer’s projects. We have just added two more trucks to our fleet to help meet the increased demands. It has been a challenge to keep enough CDL Class A drivers on staff to handle the demand.
Although we will always try to utilize our delivery fleet to keep down the cost to our customers there will be times when we have to utilize outside haulers. We ask our customers to give us as much notice as possible to schedule loads however if it is necessary to use outside haulers we will do so to meet the customer’s schedule. When that occurs we will prepay and add to the customer bill.
New products added this month at Foster Supply include precast light pole bases and maintenance platforms for Hi Mast Light Poles that are place in slopes otherwise known as Hi Mast Pole Headwalls.
Foster Supply leads the way with innovative solutions for retaining wall applications. After the success in the City of Milton, Foster Supply moved to the gas industry utilizing Redi-Rock block for bridge abutments saving countless time in the gas fields by eliminating the need for a lengthy permit process. Foster Supply teamed up with two separate engineering firms to develop a method to build bridges in a short time span using the Big Block system. By using the Redi-Rock block it allows a contractor to build abutments in a fraction of the time while not interfering with the stream bed, thus eliminating the need for a 404 permit or intervention by the USACE or EPA.
The purchase of the Oldcastle/Package System plant in Sissonville went smoothly. Foster Supply honored all outstanding orders at the same terms and conditions as Oldcastle offered to its customers. There were very few glitches in shipments or billing. We are now fully integrated between the operations and have more capabilities than ever. We are offering solutions to site specific concrete requirements by precasting items not formerly considered. If you can draw it we can make it. Give Foster Supply the opportunity to provide precast solution on your next difficult project.
The new PC system developed for our retaining wall blocks allow us to have walls under design as high as 60’. Heights like that were not possible before. Additionally the PC system adds to the factor of safety at the top of the wall from 2.5 to 4 times what other blocks can accomplish. Give us a call on your next difficult retaining wall project.
If your tired of time consuming placement of Rip Rap channels we are having great success with our Flex-A-Mat product. It goes down in about 1/10 the time as Rip Rap, allows grass to grow through it and withstands velocities of 20 feet per second. The environmentalist love it and you will too. Give this product a try on your next project and you won’t go back.
Packaged Systems Acquisition
Foster Supply is proud to announce the acquisition of Oldcastle Precast’s Charleston West Virginia location on Martins Branch near Sissonville. This acquisition allows us to provide a wider variety of products to our customers. We are now able to provide manholes from 4’ diameter to 12’ diameter for both storm and sanitary applications while enhancing our already strong line of square box inlet products.
The new location allows us to precast box culverts, three sided structures, specialty drainage inlets, grease traps and vaults of all sorts. We will be able to precast a much wider variety of specialty products as well. Foster Supply will look at many new applications. If customers think it might be a product that can be precast all they need to do is send us the drawing and we will see if it is possible.
Foster Supply has maintained the production and sales staff at the location so our customers will have continuity. All existing orders will be honored for customers with good credit.
We are pleased to welcome the new employees and are proud to have the opportunity to better serve our customers. Guy Shamblin will still handle the outside sales while James Robinson will be our contact for inside sales and scheduling. Scott Worstell will continue to be our production manager an d have the responsibility to get products out on time.
Tree Savers in Milton
The Mayor of Milton, City Council, West Virginia Department of Highways Engineers, West Virginia Paving, RK Construction and members of the public joined together to save Bartlett Pear trees along US Route 60 through downtown Milton. Milton has long been known for the Pumpkin Festival and its beautiful Bartlett Pear Trees that line US Route 60 in downtown. When the state announced the project which originally included using a small dry cast block wall using geogrid everyone jumped into action because 4 beautiful Bartlett Pear trees were in jeopardy..
They approached Foster Supply for a solution that would save the trees while adding aesthetics to the main street of Milton. Mayor Tom Canterbury approached the highway department about using the same wall system that wals used on the 911 call center. Foster Supply produced the original wall out of Redi-Rock Ledgestone and agreed to provide the same system, if approved at a reduced price to keep a consistent look throughout the main thoroughfare through downtown Milton.
City Councilman Bob Legg stated “Everyone loves the wall and we have had no complaints. We are glad that we saved the trees and the steps look great!” Mayor Canterbury stated this is one of the few projects if not the only one he had been involved with where there were no complaints from the residents. He said that everyone love the wall.
The Miltonian a monthly publication put out by the city refers to the wall in the following way: “They are doing a great job and the wall looks wonderful.”
Foster Supply and its staff are honored to be a part of this great success story.
102 Years of Service
Foster Supply is grateful for the confidence and dedication that all of our employees have placed in our company. This year we have four employees that have reached their twenty five year anniversaries with the company. Joe Pingley, Anna, Charles R. King, and Jim Flinner 3 of which reached the milestone within 2 months of each other. Each has twenty five years of service and Jim has twenty seven for a combined total of One hundred two years.
It has been my distinct pleasure to share twenty five years together with these loyal and valuable employees. They truly are great employees and wonderful friends. We hope to have a few more years in all of us. Foster Supply remains a force in the construction market place due to our dedicated staff. Please join me in thanking Anna, Joe, Jim and Chuck for their twenty five years of service to our customers.
New Location, London KY
Foster Supply is proud to announce the opening of our London Kentucky branch. This location is our fourth and will make it easier for us to service our customers in Northern Tennessee, Southern, and Eastern Kentucky.
We want to welcome the newest member of our sales staff Tony Blair. He comes to us from Independent Concrete Pipe Company where he served in numerous capacities out of their London operation. Tony will continue to interact with many of the same customers that he did while at ICP.
With weather starting to break it is time to remind all of our customers that most shipping delays occur in the spring time as projects start opening up for the construction season. As always Foster Supply will make every attempt to deliver products to our customers based upon the customer’s schedule. To that end it always helps to plan ahead and give us as much time in advance to schedule as possible. We have a limited number of trucks in our fleet and service customers on a first come first served basis. Please give us as accurate scheduling as you possibly can to avoid production or shipping delays.
Foster Supply is looking forward to meeting the needs of our customers as the new construction season arrives. Thanks for your past and future business.
Ron R. Foster
New Product Veneer Stone
In 2014 we are excited about several new opportunities including the launch of our Bowland Stone product line of veneer stone for virtually every type of project from commercial to residential. Bowland Stone is available in multiple colors and mimics natural stone to give a real look with an easy to install product.
Ron R. Foster
Foster Supply Has Injury Free 2013
Foster Supply Inc. wants to thank all of our customers for helping us have an excellent year in 2013. We were able to keep our business running effectively all year even with Construction down as a whole 13%.
We also want to congratulate all of our employees on an injury free year with over 95,000 man hours.
Ron R. Foster
WV DOH approves Positive Conection
The West Virginia DOH has approved the use of our new PC “Positive Connection” system with our Redi-Rock retaining walls up to 30 feet tall. This opens many new opportunities for use in bridge applications.
Ron R. Foster