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Driving Transportation Projects Forward in the Carolinas

By Joe VanHoose

July 22, 2020

Jennifer Farino leading transportation projects in the Carolinas.

Editor's Note: This story was originally published on July 25, 2019 and has been updated.

When it comes to her career, Jennifer Farino is inspired by this Vince Lombardi quote: “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.”

Jennifer, RS&H’s 2019 Project Manager of the Year, keeps this in mind as she works toward her project goals in the Carolinas. She is currently working on several transportation projects, including the Harker’s Island Bridge Replacement, I-485 Express Lanes, Cornelius Roundabouts and I-77 South Express Lanes projects to name a few.

When she entered the engineering field, Jennifer didn’t know what to expect but quickly discovered her work would truly make a difference in our communities.

“As I started my career, I dabbled in structure design as well as hydraulic design but found my true passion in roadway design,” said Jennifer. “I love how every project is different and is a big puzzle that just needs to be put together in the most efficient, cost-effective way.”


Success with Topsail Island Bridge

Jennifer served as the project manager and lead engineer on the Topsail Island Bridge Replacement project. The Topsail Island Bridge over the Intracoastal Waterway in Pender County, North Carolina, is one of only two bridges linking the popular vacation island to the mainland and was originally constructed in the 1950s. Additionally, this project was recognized by ACEC in 2019 and received the Engineering Excellence Award at their 50th Year Anniversary Celebration.

Community engagement was a critical component of ensuring a successful project outcome. Jennifer and her RS&H team coordinated extensive community engagement activities early and often throughout the project.

The engagement program was tailored specifically for the community and focused on using existing applications in a new way, including distributing information to every property on the island – an unprecedented 10,000 newsletters – and holding in-person, small-group meetings and largescale workshops accommodating large crowds of people. Many meetings were hands-on, as residents were encouraged to sketch solution ideas to then see how the sketches were transformed into legitimate options.

The final design consisted of roadway approach layouts, structure design, vessel impact, and hydraulic analysis – including scour and two-dimensional modeling techniques – plus construction staging and traffic control.


Driving Growth in the Carolinas

RS&H hired Jennifer six years ago to assist on design-build projects. Since then, she has transitioned from working on design-build projects to overseeing over 20 associates within the N.C. Roadway Group.

Jennifer has helped successfully deliver many projects and garner repeat business for RS&H since her first day with the company. She earns the respect she receives from all her clients because she is dependable and consistent as a project manager.

“Her responsiveness, attention to detail and organizational skills have led to the successful and timely delivery of needed improvements,” said Josh Deyton, Division 14 project team lead for the North Carolina Department of Transportation.


Positive Impact

In the past several years, the T-I Practice has experienced accelerated growth and partnership with clients in the Carolinas. Jennifer plays a significant role in these accomplishments.

“Her reputation among our clients and industry partners is outstanding. She leads by example and is 100-percent dedicated to our success,” said RS&H Vice President Ken Herring.

Learn more about how Jennifer and the rest of the Transportation team can help on your next project.


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Topics: Our People, Awards, Transportation, News, Associate Awards, Transportation Infrastructure

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About the Author

Joe is a storyteller with more than a decade of experience in media relations, with particular specialty in writing and promoting. He can be reached at joe.vanhoose@rsandh.com.

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