Maid of the Mist: An All-Hands Effort

WSP USA called on the staff expertise and resources of 10 offices for the Maid of the Mist winter storage facility project. Project Manager John Hubert coordinated the efforts from the Buffalo office.


Maid of the Mist boats docked for the season at Niagara Falls.

The Buffalo team, including Deputy Project Manager and Lead Engineer Joe Fonzi, Mark Bajorek, Garret Meal, Greg Jasinski, Kevin Bochenski, Krys Wierzbicki, Tom McGann, Rachael Wind, and Steven Flowers, was responsible for primary structural, site layout, drainage, utilities and coordination. Fonzi led many of the complex technical tasks and worked closely with the contractor, L.P. Ciminelli, on site.

The following offices and staff supported the Buffalo team on the project:

New York City:

  • Power group (Ambrish Desai and Michael Case) developed the electrical design.
  • Structures group (led by Julio Valvezan) designed a tunnel through the 3.4-meter- (11-foot-) thick wall of the elevator shaft and reviewed the crane foundation design. Larry Taylor performed a condition assessment and repair recommendations for the walls of the elevator structure.
  • Geotechnical group (led by Kyle Ott) designed stabilization measures for the gorge rock face and designed a fence to protect the facility from falling rocks.
  • Visualization group (Steve Dorneles) coordinated development of numerous visual simulations needed to advance the project.
  • Marine group (Bob Smith) assisted with developing early site concepts.

Boston: Hydropower group (led by Stefan Schadinger) designed modifications of an existing penstock (the conduit that carried water to the former power plant) to accommodate new electrical service.

St. Louis:

  • Buildings group (led by Greg Christian) designed the maintenance building.
  • Mechanical & Electrical Technical Excellence Center (Dave Hetlage, Ken Tella) designed the fuel system.

Dallas: Geotechnical group (Hosam Salman) supported development of the alternative retaining wall design.

San Francisco: Geotechnical group (Tom Lee) led the geotechnical effort for the alternative retaining wall design. In addition, he reviewed a report and contract documents associated with rock removal to improve the stability of the gorge rock face.

Denver: Design Visualization group (Tom Shannon, Ryan Sander, Steve Dorneles) prepared numerous visual simulations that were critical to advancing the project through permitting.

Heery – Washington, DC (Tim Hudgins): Led the elevator design, performing the architectural design and coordinating an elevator specialty consultant as well as other disciplines performed in other WSP and Heery offices.

Heery – Atlanta: Supported mechanical and plumbing design for the elevator.

Halsall – Toronto (Andrew Dionne): Provided structural design for the elevator framing, cantilever mezzanine, and elevator penthouse building.

See main story: Maid in America: New US Facility Houses Iconic Niagara Falls Tour Boats.


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