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Long Island Firm Helps Pave Way for Amazon Distribution Center

Thu June 02, 2022 - Northeast Edition #12

The two Caterpillar rollers and Caterpillar paver work together.
(CEG photo)
The two Caterpillar rollers and Caterpillar paver work together. (CEG photo)
The two Caterpillar rollers and Caterpillar paver work together.
(CEG photo) A Caterpillar AP 1055F lays down a coat of asphalt at the new Amazon facility in Syosset, N.Y.
(CEG photo) (L-R) are Jim Smith, sales rep of H.O. Penn Machinery; Dennis Kellerman, president of Metro Paving; and Brian Cox, paving operator/supervisor of Metro Paving.
(CEG photo) A Caterpillar AP 1055F paver maneuvers around landscape islands in the Amazon facility parking lots.
(CEG photo) Brian Cox, primary operator and supervisor, has been with Metro Paving since its beginning.
(CEG photo) A Caterpillar CB 2.7 double drum 47-in. 3-ton asphalt roller is on the job site.
(CEG photo) A Caterpillar paver receives a load of asphalt from one of Metro Paving’s dump trucks.
(CEG photo) Ideal compaction rates are being achieved with the Caterpillar CB 10 double drum 67-in. 10-ton asphalt roller.
(CEG photo) The 200,000 sq.ft. Amazon facility in Syosset, N.Y.
(CEG photo) A Weiler TT500 500-gal. tack spreader.
(CEG photo)

Amazon is in the process of creating a substantial footprint on Long Island with the construction of four major distribution centers.

One of those is a 200,000 sq. ft. facility that is nearing completion in Syosset, N.Y., in the town of Oyster Bay just off the Long Island Expressway on a 39-acre site that was formerly the home of Cerro Wire. Most of the 39-acre site that is not taken up by warehouse is a massive parking lot that is being constructed by Metro Paving of Long Island, N.Y.

In speaking with Dennis Kellerman, president of Metro Paving, this massive project will consume 13,000 tons of binder and 9,500 tons of topcoat, all of which must be laid within a 30-day time period.

But tackling big, high-profile projects is nothing new to Metro Paving.

Within the past couple of years, projects that the company has completed included the Islanders UBS Arena at Belmont Park, which entailed 40,000 tons of asphalt with a two-month turn time, as well as repaving the parking lots for Arthur Ashe Stadium, home of the U.S. Open.

Metro Paving was founded in 2014 and Kellerman's experience with paving goes back to 1985. He and his crew of about 50 are typically able to work approximately 10 months a year, completing 12 months of work in this period of time.

Serving New York City and Long Island, Metro Paving has experienced astounding growth since its inception through continue 100 percent commitment to excel.

Kellerman is very proud of the diversity of the company's customer portfolio.

"Not only have we enjoyed working on some of the metropolitan area's higher profile jobs, but we also have a stable of good, reliable, municipal customers that will help see us through if we reach a period of economic contraction.

"The biggest challenge we are facing on the Amazon project is the tight turnaround time. We have to make the optimum use of every single day. Among other things, what that really means to me is that we have no room in our schedule for any equipment downtime. For that reason, it is imperative that we have reliable equipment in our fleet and timely service from our vendors that we can absolutely rely on."

On a project such as this, accurate slope control is of the utmost importance to Metro Paving.

"To achieve this in the most efficient way possible, we have used GPS guidance systems from Sitech along with Caterpillar grade and slope controls for some time. Our crew has made the transition to using that type of technology and the savings in time for us as a company has been substantial.

"One of my responsibilities as an employer is to give my crew the best tools possible to do their job, and that's the reason you will see almost exclusively Caterpillar equipment from H.O. Penn Machinery on our job sites. As far as slope and grade control are concerned the electronics are simple to operate and fully integrated into the Caterpillar machines. On the rare occasion that we have any issues, the product support from both H.O. Penn and Sitech is incredible.

"Of course, you can have the greatest equipment in the world, but you have to have quality employees to go with it. We take great pride in having many homegrown employees that have been with us since the start, and we have very little turnover. We stay very attentive to our employees' needs and they, in return, give us 110 percent.

"It also gives me great pride that my son, Ryan, has joined the team and has grown to lead the estimating department and run the daily office operations."

At the Amazon site, Metro Paving has an impressive lineup of equipment purchased from H.O. Penn Machinery, including:

  • Caterpillar AP 1055F paver with 10-1/2 to 20-ft. paving width;
  • Caterpillar CB 10 double drum 67-in. 10-ton asphalt roller;
  • Caterpillar CB 2.7 double drum 47-in.3-ton asphalt roller;
  • Weiler TT 500 500-gal. tack distributor;
  • (2) Caterpillar 272 skid steers; and
  • Caterpillar 415F tracked loader

According to Kellerman, "The Caterpillar AP 1055F is our newest Caterpillar paver. It is ideally sized for this project. We are typically paving in 13-foot to 16-foot passes. The parking lot has a lot of landscape islands in it. This size paver allows us to have a lot of maneuverability with a minimal number of joints.

"The Caterpillar rollers are very comfortable for our operators, offer great visibility and joystick operation, which is our operators' steering method of choice."

Brian Cox, Metro Paving's primary paving operator and supervisor, has worked with Kellerman for 22 years. Along with Cox and the veteran team is Frank Lucatuorto Jr., future general superintendent. Absorbing all of the newest technology and implementing it on a daily basis.

"I rely heavily on them for their input, and they are big fans of the Caterpillar equipment," Kellerman said.

"It's not just the quality of the equipment that keeps me coming back to Caterpillar and H.O. Penn Machinery. It's the support they give me after the sale.

"We go to extremes to keep our machines well-maintained, but no matter how good your maintenance program is there are times that you need parts and service. H.O. Penn's parts availability is excellent. Jim Smith, our sales rep with H.O. Penn, is also there to help us through any tricky situations, but in addition to that H.O. Penn Machinery also has a paving specialist, Marty Callahan, who is available for technical support." CEG

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