Construction charity AGC Charities, Inc. and the Colorado Contractors Association's Emerging Leaders Council have begun construction of a new Head Start playground that will expand play learning opportunities for dozens of local children. As part of the charitable organization's annual Autodesk Operation Opening Doors effort, dozens of construction firms are donating time, expertise and money to build the playground in Colorado Springs.


"This project is a great example of the kind of charitable efforts our members undertake in communities across the country," said Michael Anderson, a senior vice president with Berwyn, Penn.-based American Global, LLC, and the chairman of AGC Charities. "Contractors may have tough jobs but turns out they also have soft hearts."


AGC Charities and the local contractors are building a new playground that will double the size of the current Head Start facility at Evans Elementary School. The new facility will include a series of interactive features and a new tricycle "race track" that will expand play learning opportunities for the 3 to 5-year-olds enrolled in CPCD Giving Children a Head Start's program.


The volunteer contractors, who are being organized by the Emerging Leaders Council affiliated with the association's statewide highway and infrastructure chapter, are conducting most of the construction work during a week-long blitz starting March 18. By the end of the week they expect to complete $50,000 worth of donated work. The project is designed to tie into the start of the Associated General Contractors of America's national convention, which is taking place in Denver from April 1st through April 4th.


"We have seen a tremendous amount of support with many local firms eager to donate their expertise to help make a difference," said Betsy Wagner, Sales Development Manager for Wagner Equipment, who is serving as the project manager. "This is a great opportunity for contractors to give back to their local community."


CPCD Giving Children a Head Start operates 63 classrooms in six county school districts and the Fort Carson military base. The group partners with Early Connections Learning Centers, School District 11, and 10 family child care homes to bring the total number of classrooms to 75, serving more than 1,800 children each day.


Many Colorado-area firms are participating in the project, Wagner noted, including A1 Chipseal; ACC Mountain West; Ames Construction; APC Construction; APC Southern; Assignar; Brannan Sand & Gravel Co.; Bedder Spreaders; Castle Rock Construction Co. of Colo; Colorado Barricade; Commercial Credit Group; Concrete Express, Inc., dba CEI; Hamilton Construction Co.; Holmes Murphy & Associates; Ideal Fencing; Kiewit Infrastructure; Kramer North America LLC; Martin Marietta; SEMA Construction, Inc.; Surescape Insurance Services; T. Lowell Construction; Wagner Equipment Co.; and Worldwide Rental Services.


Anderson said the AGC Charities group conducted fundraising to support costs associated with constructing the playground. He noted that the charitable group was established eleven years ago to channel and support the charitable efforts of the construction community. Click here to view a short video previewing the project. Click here for more information about this project and AGC Charities, Inc.