Providing Engineering Solutions with Innovative Product Offerings and Integrity
GeoSolutions, Inc. is widely known and respected for its knowledge of soil stabilization, earth retention and erosion control. It is a full-service geosynthetics solution company, providing optimized geosynthetic material solutions and technical support ranging from construction site support to fully-engineered and sealed drawings.
GeoSolutions works closely with clients on earth stabilization and other site conditions no matter how complex or challenging, and it has the technical and practical knowledge to make certain that jobs are completed on time, according to budget and with complete customer satisfaction.
Prior to founding the company in 1999, President Carey Witt, P.E. received his BSCE from Iowa State University and spent many years in the geotechnical engineering field, in construction material sales and as a geosynthetic specialist. One of Witt’s early positions was working as a Project Engineer for well-known oil and gas giant Texaco.
He recognized a need in the marketplace for a firm that could support engineers and contractors with technical geosynthetic materials and expertise and formed GeoSolutions seventeen years ago to serve this need.
“I took my business model – which is basically a solution-centric approach to the market – and I began to market myself as a solution provider,” he says. “This was not only in terms of the engineering expertise I had developed in mechanically stabilized earth retaining walls and streambank restoration but also in the use of geosynthetics to improve site development projects.”
Today, the company he created has grown to encompass six office and warehouse locations, with five in Texas – Austin, San Antonio, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston and Corpus Christi – and a location in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. “We cover the entire state of Texas and Oklahoma, which is no easy task,” states Witt. “That is a big geography with variable project site conditions.”
Witt has seen his company grow to forty-eight full-time staff, which includes fourteen sales specialists who market and sell all facets of the geosynthetic industry. Many employees at GeoSolutions have been with the business over ten years.
Employees are extremely well-versed in the applicability of geosynthetics to improve civil engineering projects. Projects include soil stabilization, pavement optimization, erosion control, revegetation, stormwater use and filtration and the installation of retaining wall systems and containment structures with geomembranes. In addition to supplying the most technically advanced and most appropriate products available, GeoSolutions is pleased to offer customers a wealth of design experience, expert planning advice, inspection services, stormwater pollution prevention plans and engineering services for site development projects. GeoSolutions’ team of problem solvers routinely engage with owners, engineers and contractors in order to appreciate project-related, client focused needs. In most cases, their product and service offering results in win-win solutions that maximize the application’s performance while also optimizing project costs.”
Along with its highly experienced sales staff, the company boasts five engineers and technicians with expertise in designing and implementing retaining wall projects, streambank restoration, and reinforced soil slopes. Witt maintains it is critical for the success of the company and its clients to be surrounded by staff who are recognized experts in the earth stabilization field.
“We routinely call upon municipalities, civil engineers and government entities where we need to be able to be an asset for them and a resource relative to our products and the associated solutions,” he says. GeoSolutions has three divisions, namely construction materials sales, engineering solutions and environmental services with eight specialists committed to stormwater compliance and regulation.
Serving customers in demanding sectors including oil and gas, heavy highway, land development and industrial facilities requires both experience and vision, since not all customer needs are the same.
To create successful soil stabilization, erosion control and earth retention solutions takes the right technology and products. GeoSolutions works with top manufacturers, seeking out the best possible products by leading companies from the United States and across the globe to create soil stabilization solutions. It carries a range of items specific to cellular confinement, construction/sediment control, drainage systems, earth retention systems, erosion control and revegetation.
GeoSolutions carefully selects materials to create solutions best suited for individual client needs. Witt started with a handful of proven geosynthetic materials and expanded the selection from there, appealing to premier manufacturers in the industry that were looking for highly innovative, integrity-oriented sellers and marketers. “We provided these services for the previous eighteen years and had become well-known in that arena. Manufacturers were very happy to engage us and allow us to represent their products,” he says.
“Part of our success is that we have partnered with the premier manufacturers of geosynthetic materials in the world, and those are the products that we take to the marketplace,” he says. “These manufacturers are all very well established and the performance capabilities of their products are well validated through extensive research and testing.”
Geo Solutions, Inc. has always been driven to find the most cost-effective options for its customers. During the Texas Oil Boom in 2012, aggregate costs were sky rocketing throughout the state of Texas. A large salt water disposal project in North Texas required a new truck entry and parking area. Because of the poor soil subgrades present on the project, the Engineer had specified a 14″ thick aggregate base section. When the Owner contacted Sales Representative David Bullock and asked him about the project, David offered to evaluate the project and performed soil testing with a Dynamic Cone Penetrometer (DCP) which would help determine the subgrade strength. With the assistance of Tensar International, David was able to offer a substantially thinner aggregate pavement design with a Tensar TX-160 Geogrid, resulting in substantial cost savings on this project. The client was so impressed that they chose to utilize the services of Geo Solutions, Inc. on an even larger salt water disposal facility in south Texas, just three months later. This project was over 80 acres, and Geo Solutions was able to save the client close to 2 million dollars.
The company has also developed and patented several of its own solutions for stormwater protection, such as the GeoCurve Inlet Filter. The GeoCurve’s highly innovative design is easily installed into an inlet and features a sediment collection trough that catches debris and sediment before it can enter waterways. The easy-to-clean GeoCurve Inlet Filter can then be reinstalled repeatedly. Another new product is the GeoDike, which is used for sediment control around the perimeter of construction sites.
The two main products the company takes to market are its lines of geotextiles and geogrids, both of which are precisely designed and engineered to meet demanding performance requirements for applications ranging from erosion control to water and waste management, transportation facilities construction, shoreline protection, marine structure construction and mechanically stabilizing earth structures.
GeoSolutions is not only outpacing the competition but working with others to take to market second-generation products that are more durable and impart significant strength to soil structures with improved performance over standard products. An example of one such product is the TriAx® Geogrid, a highly-advanced product created specifically for high traffic pavements. It has multi-directional properties with triangular geometry to provide enhanced stability and provides a highly innovative alternative to conventional construction methods and materials.
“We have the ability now to incorporate these TriAx® Geogrids into pavement sections and as much as triple the functional life of pavements by adding a single layer of Geogrid,” says Witt. Clients can also undergo a pavement optimization program which minimizes some of the pavement materials and helps cover the cost of the Geogrid.
To ensure product consistency performance and reliability, GeoSolutions utilizes existing research and industry standard tests which have been developed to determine and compare performance characteristics. This results in engineers being able to choose products based not only on physical properties but more importantly the associated performance.
“The leaders of our industry conduct tests on pavement systems to verify performance. By example, a flexible pavement that has a geosynthetic inclusion could undergo accelerated pavement testing where specially calibrated loading apparatus apply tens of thousands of wheel loads on test tracks equipped with monitoring devices in order to determine the performance improvement relative to the inclusion of various geogrids or geotextiles. We are not just providing products that have certain physical properties that meet a specification; we are recommending products that have been proven through field and laboratory testing to meet the rigors of the pavement in question.”
GeoSolutions leaves nothing to chance. This includes performing site reconnaissance, visiting locations to determine conditions and studying available design input data including geotechnical reports, civil engineering drawings and specifications to decide the intended performance parameters of the project.
From there, the company will do its own performance and cost/benefit analysis and then examine a variety of solutions to conclude which is the most appropriate fit for the client’s individual expectations and needs.
The company is active in virtually every sector of the market from the occasional large-scale homeowner project to massive petrochemical plant expansions and Department of Transportation projects requiring optimized pavement designs. GeoSolutions believes success fuels success and must be shared with others.
“We are fortunate to have had the success we have, and we want to give back to be able to make a difference in the world,” says Witt of the company, which helps communities both near and far. Local initiatives include supporting Little League teams for underprivileged kids, working with Shriners to help children affected by neuromusculoskeletal conditions and severe burns and supplying high school students with sheep and calves so that they can acquire farming knowledge. Every year, the company adopts a family at Christmas and provides them with gifts and support that improve their lives.
For the past five years, the company has supported water initiatives for two small, remote villages in Eastern Province Rwanda, outside Kigali, where residents have no electricity or plumbing and live in one-room mud huts.
“We are involved in water resources materials, so it’s a natural fit for us,” says Witt. “We look for opportunities to create a sustainable impact on the lives of less fortunate people, and we are partnering with a company called Rwandans for Water. We have been able to assist in drilling a series new water wells to serve these communities. Our current initiative involves reactivating existing wells that are no longer functioning due to lack of maintenance.” By reconditioning existing wells with new pump heads and providing clean water, the lives of these people have been changed for the better.
GeoSolutions continues to work with innovative manufacturers who share the company’s vision of providing the best products and dealing with others with integrity and professionalism as it seeks to broaden its geographic reach and product offerings in the coming years.
“We have grown to the point in our product offerings where we have multiple product lines that fulfill many of the primary functions necessary to create optimized solutions. Many competing firms have limited product lines, and they sell these products or oversell the products wherever they can. By contrast, we partner with an engineer with unique problems and bring a whole myriad of solutions and products to the table, therefore, we can better fit the needs of our clients, rather than simply selling products to meet our sales goals,” says Witt.
“Our approach to the marketplace is based upon providing solutions with the industry’s most innovative products in a manner that is cost-effective to the owners and provides the highest degree of sustainable performance.”