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Lunch and Learn: Federal Grant Requirements for City Reimbursement

On Tuesday, August 4th, 2020, Barry Vanterpool, Director of the Grant Reimbursement in the infrastructure Division of the NYC Department of Design and Construction, presented in the fourth week of the STEAM Virtual Lunch and Learn Series. Lunch and Learn is a one-hour interactive presentation by DDC professionals speaking about their current role, career path and education.

Mr. Vanterpool presented on Federal Grant Requirements for City Reimbursement and discussed the significance of federal grants and how they are used to fund construction projects. He explained how grants are used to rebuild the city infrastructure after catastrophic events, revitalize communities, provide opportunities to upgrade facilities, improve and implement pedestrian and vehicular safety measures, and ensure equal employment opportunities. He also outlined how grant requirements are met through compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). For example, ADA compliance can be met by constructing compliant pedestrian ramps that incorporate visually contrasting detectable warning surfaces. And also, by adhering to the Buy American Act, which ensures that all steel and iron products used on DDC projects are manufactured in the United States. The Buy American Act is intended to boost the American economy. And lastly, by employing Affirmative Action practices to prevent discrimination against women, minorities, low income residents and underrepresented businesses.

Pedestrian ramps found on corners of NYC streets are ADA compliant

Pedestrian ramps found on corners of NYC streets are ADA compliant

A considerable amount of the damage done by Superstorm Sandy was corrected thanks to the receipt of Federal grants. Some of those funds were used to build new sewers, catch basins and wetlands, which in turn help to mitigate flooding and improve roadway drainage,” stated Deputy Commissioner for Community Partnerships and STEAM Initiatives Lee Llambelis.

Interns pose with Mr. Vanterpool in the office and on the field during their internship program

Mr. Vanterpool has mentored several interns as part of DDC's Internship Program

He also spoke about the importance of finding a mentor and shared examples of the many benefits of interning at DDC. “The relationships formed during an internship can in some instances enable students to return to DDC as a college intern and in other instances as permanent employees,” stated Mr. Vanterpool.

Prior to overseeing the Grants Unit, Mr. Vanterpool served as a Resident Engineer managing and inspecting the capital construction of sewer, water main, and highway projects for the Infrastructure division of DDC and the Sewer Construction division of the Department of Environmental Protection. He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Stony Brook University.

About the NYC Department of Design and Construction

The Department of Design and Construction is the City’s primary capital construction project manager. In supporting Mayor de Blasio’s long-term vision of growth, sustainability, resiliency, equity and healthy living, DDC provides communities with new or renovated public buildings such as such as firehouses, libraries, police precincts, and new or upgraded roads, sewers and water mains in all five boroughs. To manage this $14 billion portfolio, DDC partners with other City agencies, architects and consultants, whose experience bring efficient, innovative and environmentally-conscious design and construction strategies to City projects. For more information, please visit