School Building Modifications for COVID-19

We must modify existing educational facilities to allow the continued education of our students. We cannot allow the COVID-19 crisis to steal a year from our children.

Re-opening our schools requires planning. Here are a few ideas to help.

It starts with hardware and software that enables students to access all needed textbooks and lessons from their own computers. Sharing textbooks and handouts is no longer acceptable in a COVID-19 world.

In the past several decades, larger new schools have been built. Large schools decrease per-student operating costs, but they are prime environments for spreading communicable diseases. We recommend a return to smaller school buildings. We will not be surprised to see parents consider building size when choosing a school.

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How To Heat Your Building If You Can’t Use Natural Gas

The U.S. Energy Information Agency has reported that 43 percent of home energy usage goes to heating, and another eight percent to air conditioning. The least expensive energy source for heating is natural gas, which is plentiful in the United States.

However, some people in the ‘green’ movement believe we shouldn’t use natural gas as an energy source, because it’s carbon-based. (About 85 percent of the energy used in the world is carbon-based.)

If you’re forced by new ‘green’ regulations to abandon your natural gas heating systems, what are your alternatives?

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Mick Rich Offers At-Cost Building Modifications Required by COVID-19

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, April 23, 2020 – Mick Rich Contractors, and Albuquerque-based commercial contractor, today announced that it would help schools and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by building any modifications they need at cost.

The offer applies to schools, churches, hospitals, medical facilities, and any ‘front-line’ businesses such as grocers, retail stores and restaurants that must modify their buildings as a result of the pandemic.

“Everyone needs to pitch in to help our economy re-emerge from the lockdown,” said Jim Rich, vice president of Mick Rich Contractors. “We decided to perform needed building modifications at cost, because businesses are under tremendous financial pressure right now.”

Rich specified that projects not required as a response to the pandemic would be estimated and billed at the construction company’s standard rates.

“We want to help as many businesses as possible recover quickly and fully,” Rich added. “A rising tide lifts all boats.”

Mick Rich Builds New Gym for City of Albuquerque

ALBUQUERQUE, NM, March 8, 2019 – On Tuesday, March 12 at 10:00am MDT, Jim Rich, vice president of Mick Rich Contractors, will join City of Albuquerque officials to break ground for construction of a new gym at the city’s NorthDomingo Baca Multigenerational Center, located at 7521 Carmel Ave NE at Wyoming Blvd.

Following an open bidding process, the city last month awarded Mick Rich the contract to build the gym. Project cost is $5.23 million.

“This will be a showcase gym for the city,” Rich said. “We’re excited to build it, and we thank City Counselor Brad Winter, who was instrumental in getting this project going.”

The gym will be 19,293 square feet, and include a multipurpose court, an elevated indoor running track, an indoor climbing gym with several climbing walls of different heights, an outdoor playground, and an exterior amphitheater.

North Domingo Baca center provides breakfast and lunch for all ages five days a week. It is the most used community center in the city of Albuquerque.

Mick Rich Receives Patent for Soft Wall Anchor

Mick Rich Contractors Inc., an Albuquerque-based commercial building contractor, has received a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for its “soft wall” anchor.

In 2007, the parish of San Felipe de Neri Church selected Mick Rich to renovate and restore its 250-year-old building.

During the project, Mick Rich found the sanctuary’s 150-year-old altar was separating from the adobe wall. The parish requested the altar be fixed without compromising the existing wall. In order to avoid changes to the existing wall, Mick Rich developed a unique solution by designing and fabricating an anchor that holds the altar to the adobe wall without the use components that would be visible to church visitors.

The new “soft wall” anchor developed by Mick Rich uses “butterflies” to hold anchors in place, rather than a large metal plate attached with a nut.

Mick Rich Builds First Platinum LEED Building in New Mexico

Mick Rich Contractors Inc., an Albuquerque-based commercial building contractor, has completed construction of its Southern Sandoval County Arroyo Flood Control Authority (SSCAFFCA) office building expansion project.

The expansion includes a one-story 4,415 square-foot addition to the existing government office in Rio Rancho. It features a 13,000-gallon cistern system to collect the buildings’ rainwater for irrigation and a 16kw photovoltaic shade structure array that will provide power for the expansion.

These features are part of the objective of becoming platinum-level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified.

To meet LEED certification requirements, 75 percent of all waste from the site must be recycled and 20 percent of all installed materials must be made of recycled content. Also, all paints, adhesives and composite wood items must have a low volatile organic compound content, meaning they are low on environmentally harmful solvents. 

The Forest Stewardship Council has certified all the wood framing material used on the project, which is also one step closer to LEED certification. 

The LEED applications for design and construction will be submitted for the certification process in mid-February.

Mick Rich Builds Classroom in Albuquerque, Transports It to Taos

Mick Rich Contractors Inc., an Albuquerque-based commercial building contractor, has completed construction of an addition for the Anansi Charter School in Taos.

The addition is a 1,836 sq. ft. third-grade classroom. The 27’ x 68’ unit was constructed at Mick Rich Contractors’ Albuquerque facility and later transported to the Taos school. Mick Rich deems this type of building as “off-site conventional construction.”

Professional structural movers loaded the addition onto two giant steel beams for transportation. Once loaded and with escorts in tow, the caravan headed for Taos. 

The building, at a little less than 18’ tall when loaded, does not fit under most overpasses, so the movers must take every exit then reenter the freeway on the other side of the bridge.

A one-piece building, as opposed to a two-piece, offers better quality, more design flexibility and shorter construction time.

Off-site conventional construction projects such as this are the best method of providing economical classrooms without the stigma of “portables,” which is why Anansi proceeded to order a second building to be delivered in 2010.

How Mick Rich Contractors Got Into the Church-Building Business

November 11, 2015

by Juliana Vadnais, Albuquerque Business First

It was almost by accident that Mick Rich Contractors started doing construction work on its first church 20 years ago.

El Santuario de Chimayo had contracted another company to build a set of restrooms outside the santuario. According to Mick Rich, president of Mick Rich Contractors, it wasn’t supposed to be a complicated job. But when he was called in to take a look, “It was a mess,” he said.

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Commercial Building Security

Fresh out of college, I was assigned as a project engineer on a large waste water treatment facility outside of Washington, D.C. It was a great opportunity for my career – and also great for touring our nation’s Capitol. Back then, you could walk straight into the Capitol Building and the Library of Congress, and stand in line for a White House tour.

Twenty years later, following the 9/11 attacks, Washington became a fortress. Overnight, concrete traffic barriers were installed around our national treasures. Today, the concrete traffic barriers are gone – yet Washington is just as secure.

We want our homes and places of business secure, but we do not want to look out through bars on windows and doors. There are several ways to accomplish this.

The Regulation Chasm:
Middle Market vs. Government

November 4, 2014
Dan Patterson, The Washington Post

Mick Rich Contractors has been in business in Albuquerque, New Mexico since 1988. Rich is a familiar face to government officials and business owners across the Southwest. But his business has fallen from a peak of 100 people to a third as many over the past few years. The reason? Rich, like many small and middle size business owners across the country, blames state and federal regulation – mainly Dodd-Frank — for negatively impacting his business.

We Are Fortunate To Work with Heroes

Mick Rich

Some people stand by and watch an emergency event that calls out for help, but never take action nor tell anyone. Other folks jump in to help, then tell the world of their great deeds. Perhaps the smallest category is people who jump in to help, but say only, “Yesterday was an interesting day.”

This story is about that last, rare category of people.

It was the end of the workday at San Martin de Porres Church in Southwest Albuquerque, when all the workmen were gathering up their tools, ready to head home. One of those workmen was our Vice President, Bobby Jaramillo, who had just completed his site inspection.

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Avoid Paving Travelers

April 12, 2019
Mick Rich

On my way home in Sandia Heights a week ago, I spotted two gravel driveways being re-graded. Always good to see neighbors keeping up their properties. But what caught my attention was the contractor’s well-maintained heavy truck. No company name on the door, but they had their NM and TX DOT Numbers.

The Travelers are coming. The Travelers are here. It’s the warm-weather version of the White Walkers in “Game of Thrones.” The Travelers bring big trouble.

Who are the Travelers?

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