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Fall 2013

A construction “hay day” for the historical Haymarket District in Nebraska’s capital city

At the direction of Lincoln, Neb.-based General Excavating, Bobcat equipment performs a variety of supporting roles in an elaborate redevelopment construction production

A Bobcat E35 excavator improves productivity on sites in the Haymarket District of Lincoln, Neb.

A Bobcat E35 excavator improves productivity on sites in the Haymarket District of Lincoln, Neb.

Since originally commissioned in 1867, the historical Haymarket District, situated on the western edge of Lincoln’s vibrant downtown, has experienced many noteworthy transformations. Few if any, however, rival the extensive production that’s been playing on the Lincoln construction stage for the past four decades.

Currently on track to meet the projected fall 2013 completion timeline, the West Haymarket Redevelopment Project is a multi-faceted endeavor intended to enrich and revitalize more than 400 acres of a once-blighted and underutilized business district. Historically, the affected redevelopment area has operated primarily as a railroad freight and passenger service business. The Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) railway operations here include main line, switchyard and various maintenance structures that have been active within the area since the 1880s.

When complete, the West Haymarket Redevelopment initiative will feature the addition of new hotels, a community plaza, more retail and office space, and several upscale residential units. The main attraction, however, is the new University of Nebraska sports arena, athletic and entertainment facility that will become the new home of the Cornhuskers’ men’s and women’s basketball teams. The $350 million facility is situated within three-point range of Haymarket’s center court, in the same bustling area that spawned the initial growth and expansion of Lincoln’s downtown business district more than a century ago.

Pinnacle Bank Arena

Pinnacle Bank Arena

Bright white and orange equipment invades Big Red territory

At the direction of site preparation personnel with Lincoln-based General Excavating, a veteran crew of seasoned site preparation experts has orchestrated the completion of many different facets of the redevelopment work. Cast in a variety of important supporting roles, a versatile team of Bobcat® E35 compact excavators and S130 skid-steer loaders — clad in bright white and orange — have received glowing reviews for their contributions by locals who are more accustomed to applauding on-field performances by their beloved Huskers outfitted in red.

Construction work for the new sports arena debuted in fall 2011, on a 500,000-square-foot stage with an entourage of excavation equipment of varying capacities that included Bobcat excavators and skid-steer loaders. One of the major roles completed by General Excavating involved the removal of more than 14,000 cubic yards of soil. Additional supporting roles included the rerouting of an existing sewer line and replacing the massive volume of soil removed earlier before any other work could begin.

Pavilion at Lincoln Station (conceptual rendering)

Pavilion at Lincoln Station (conceptual rendering)

Bobcat equipment has been a trusted partner of General Excavating for the entirety of its 26-year existence. In 2012, it added three new 33-horsepower E35 excavators and six S130 skid-steer loaders to its equipment fleet. Bobcat S130 loaders are just 60 inches wide (with bucket) and well-suited for operating in areas where larger excavating equipment won’t fit.

“The Zero Tail Swing (ZTS) capabilities of the E35 excavator make a big difference on a lot of our jobs,” says Joe D’Amico, vice president of General Excavating.

With ZTS, the E35 — part of the Bobcat M-Series lineup — has more unrestricted rotation and flexibility when working close to buildings or other structures than equipment such as tractor loader backhoes.

“The ease of changing the many available attachments helps reduce time and labor so our guys spend more time on the job and less time with equipment issues,” D’Amico continues. “It all contributes to the bottom line.”

rea Community Space (conceptual rendering)

Area Community Space (conceptual rendering)

Bobcat excavators have the most cab space in the compact equipment industry, a fact recognized by D’Amico and his operators.

“The operator station of the E35 excavator is very user-friendly,” D’Amico says,“and the smooth-flowing hydraulics help reduce operator fatigue. Operator comfort is one of those intangibles that is difficult to quantify, but our operators certainly understand it.

“In final analysis, we just want a machine that will do the job efficiently, is easy to maintain and reliable. That’s why Bobcat equipment has been a part of General Excavating for as long as we’ve been in business.”