LOS ANGELES — During an open house July 25, more than 200 business owners met division chiefs and project managers from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District to learn about contract opportunities and, in some cases, simply to learn how to get started in doing business with the Corps.
Based on the sheer size of the District’s area of responsibility, 226,000 square miles across Southern California, southern Nevada, a slice of Utah and all of Arizona, leadership feels it would be cost prohibitive to get everyone involved in the project process out to job sites to meet the contract partners.
“You really have to develop those relationships with the companies that do the work for us,” said Col. Mark Toy, District commander. “It’s (open house) a very efficient way for our contractors to meet everybody.”
Major District projects are diverse; construction of the border fence for Department of Homeland Security, rehabilitation of Veterans Affairs facilities, the California High-Speed Rail and the world’s largest groundwater recharge system in Orange County, Calif.
“Hopefully we’re seeing a lot of partnering and mentoring going on between larger and smaller companies,” added Toy. “Not only are we increasing the opportunities for these companies to work with the Corps, we’re also creating a platform for them to do this partnering amongst themselves. And that’s a good thing, too.”
The open house was held in two sessions, morning and afternoon, in the District's Emergency Operations Center and adjoining conference room with project and program displays and brochures listing various interdisciplinary branches of the Corps.