PMA People: Ty Vess

Ty Vess, PE, PMP, CCM, Director

Denver, Colorado

What current project(s) are you working on?
Currently, I am working on the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s (HART) light rail project and Denver International Airport’s Great Hall Project.

What is your career highlight so far?
So far my career highlight has been working in Hawaii on the new light rail project. In addition, everyone I have worked with at PMA has been so very helpful. I love being surrounded by professionals who all have a can-do attitude.

What is something new or innovative happening in your industry (CM or PM related)?
The utilization of Building Information Modeling (BIM) seems to be growing at a very quick pace and is being adopted by more and more clients. This is forcing the engineering and construction fields to embrace it or be left behind.

What was a transformative project or challenge that you did at PMA?
My original assignment on the Hawaii HART project was to work in the Changes and Claims group. The client was short staffed which resulted in my role changing to Resident Engineer for the construction of three transit stations and an interstate off-ramp less than a month after arriving on the island. It was very interesting working with the local contractors and learning the local culture. Did you know that backhoes are referred to as hoptoes? And Mauka (towards the mountain) and Makai (towards the ocean) are directions listed on engineering and construction drawings? The best part was Hawaiian (aka Aloha) shirts were considered formal business attire at work. I didn’t have to tuck my shirt in for almost a year.

Do you get to do something at work every day that you love? If so, what is it?
Currently I am assisting HART with large construction claim disputes which requires a lot of contract research which I oddly find to be interesting. The Denver Airport is also rewarding since we are helping our client maneuver through their first P3 project. This project has also enabled me to start using PMA’s NetPoint scheduling software. Learning new tools is always fun.

From which university did you graduate?
I earned my MBA at Regis University in Denver, Colorado in 2006 and my undergraduate degree in Civil/Environmental Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines in 1994.

What is your favorite local establishment/feature (restaurant, museum, stadium, etc.)?
My favorite is the Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Every show is amazing due to the acoustics from the surrounding red sandstone formations (aka Red Rocks), the vibrant energy, and the rather spectacular views. I consider it mandatory to see at least one or two concerts there per year, preferably more.

Provide a fun fact about yourself?
I am an avid SCUBA diver who becomes grouchy if left to dry out for an extended period of time. Our family (my wife and two sons) were all certified at the same time and have been diving together ever since. My wife and I continued our training to become Dive Masters and have been lucky enough to dive all over the world. The Hawaii assignment helped with that.