In January 2008, D&G Sealcoating & Striping was one of six contractors asked to bid specific roads. They were invited to bid because people on the homeowner's association board and within the community knew about the quality of their work through other projects within the community.
"A year before we did a little roadway with a cul-de-sac in Pelican Landing, and one of the board members happened to be on the Master Board as well and he recommended we be asked to bid," Deibel says. "In addition, a couple of other people on the board frequented local restaurants which we had sealed a few years before. After sealing the parking lots, we had stenciled our company name and phone number into the corner of their parking lot. One of the individuals went to the parking lot to find our name and telephone number and he informed us that he had to crawl under a vehicle just to make sure that we were invited to bid."
Pelican Landing did more than six months of research, eventually asking six contractors to bid specific roads. For the initial phase Shaw went out and measured each road, including intersections and any additional work such as turn lanes or "onlys." Then D&G put together its initial bid.
By March 2008 Pelican Landing had narrowed the bidders to three and these finalists were then asked to include the remaining roads.
"One of the contractors was off by 100,000 sq. ft. because he didn't measure the roads going between the cul-de-sacs," Shaw says. "I don't remember why other people didn't make the cut, but Pelican Landing was pretty demanding mainly because they didn't want their last experience repeated.
"We knew we were in the running for the job because Pelican Landing was calling our references," Shaw says. She says Pelican Landing also liked D&G's sealer, PaveShield, an asphalt emulsion-based sealer manufactured by Neyra Industries.
"During the whole time we kept working and bidding on other jobs while pursuing Pelican Landing," Shaw says. "We scheduled other work during the time we would be working on the Pelican Landing project but we told them up front that we had to do that. We didn't want to put all our eggs in one basket. You can't put your business on hold hoping for one job - even a big job like that one -and they understood that."
D&G Sealcoating and Striping eventually was awarded the contract with the job to start in July, and Deibel and Shaw spent a lot of the intervening months planning the work. "We did spend a lot of time on that because the prior contractor just disrupted the community," Deibel says. Many hours were spent with Pelican Landing's Nancy Page and Cindy Reuter-Zingraff during the scheduling. Precise sealer calculations needed to be made on a daily basis while still making it convenient for people to either exit or enter the community.
"One of the first things we did was give them a large laminated color-coded map of the project, then we sat down with them to figure out when to do each part of the job," Deibel says. "Pelican Landing has one long road that goes north to south the length of the development with finger roads off that. We decided to work on every other finger road so people could park on the opposite road. We just worked with them to figure out how people could get in and out of their homes and the area as easily as possible. We didn't want to disrupt them."
Once the schedule was determined Pelican Landing contacted all residents with a letter, letting them know which roads were going to be done when. The homeowners' association also relied on e-mail and on its closed circuit television to keep residents informed about upcoming work, changes, and progress. The Pelican Landing security force directed traffic throughout the project.
"There was a lot of cooperation, but that was one of the things we brought to the bid," Deibel says. "We knew they wanted a contractor willing to work with them, and we showed them that not only could we do the work well under their schedule, we would work with them to minimize any disruption to the residents."
Equipment Provides Comfort Level
Deibel says that while D&G's experience, attention to detail, and willingness to work with residents played a role in landing the bid, the D&G equipment fleet gave Shaw and Deibel a comfort level to enable them to pursue the big high-profile job. He knew he had enough of the right mix of equipment to do a good job.