Charles Cochran, a Project Manager on the Traffic [...]
When I came to Sain Associates in November 1985, the Chicago Bears were on their way to a Super Bowl victory, Oprah was gearing up for her first broadcast, and desktop computers had just started appearing in schools and offices all over the country. I don’t think any of us imagined today’s world of global positioning systems and mobile technologies – but it’s been fascinating watching it all develop.
I had worked at Perry Hand & Associates in Gulf Shoes for eight years as a surveying draftsman before I came to Sain. At my previous job, I’d had some experience in sanitary sewer design. At Sain, I learned to do site engineering drawings, from layout to grading to utility layout. I self-trained on computers in 1991 when Sain started moving into the computer aided design (CAD) era. In 1996, I moved into the Infrastructure Department to work on highway design projects.
In my role today, we’re handling design projects for road widening, existing road reconstruction, and sometimes new roads from beginning to end. This includes layout of the road, striping, drainage, and traffic control during construction (which sometimes includes a detour plan). We coordinate with our traffic department for lane and taper lengths and signal design when necessary.
I’ve worked in teams as small as one (me) up to teams with seven other Sain associates, based on the project size and our current workload. We’ve weathered lots of economic ups and downs in the last 30 years – when the economy is good, we have as much work as we can do. I’m excited to see the amount of projects we’re working on increasing these days, as the economic conditions across the South keep improving.
Sain Associates, Inc., is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, with offices in Pulaski, Tennessee and Mandeville, Louisiana. Sain is a site engineering, traffic/transportation engineering and planning and land surveying firm with experience in more than thirty states.