Bently to break ground on new building |

Bently to break ground on new building

by Sharon Carter

Limited work space has been a problem for Minden entrepreneur Don Bently since he began building his Bently probe in his Berkeley, Calif., garage in the late 1950s.

But, not for much longer.

At noon Thursday, Bently, local dignitaries and officers of Bently Nevada Corp. plan to ceremonially break ground for Bently Parkway South, the road that will lead to the site of the company’s new headquarters in the Bently Science Park at the southwest corner of Orchard and Buckeye roads.

“It’s not the expandable rubber building I always told people we needed,” Bently said Thursday. “But, I’ve always wanted to be long on space, and at least temporarily, we will be.”

One of Douglas County’s largest employers, Bently Nevada employs about 900 people in the Carson Valley where the company builds the diagnostic probes which monitor the shafts of the rotating machinery like the turbines, compressors and pumps used in power generation and the manufacturing, pipeline and aerospace industries.

n World market share. Bently supplies 50 percent of the world market for such devices.

The company also has offices in 21 other states and 42 foreign countries, and another 600 employees outside Nevada.

The new 250,000-square-foot building to be located at the Bently Science Park is planned to consolidate the company’s scattered Carson Valley manufacturing operations and house its corporate offices.

The new facility will be adjacent to the historic Buckeye Ranch buildings on south Buckeye near the Douglas campus of Western Nevada Community College, which is also at the science park. It will replace the ranch’s old brick lambing pens, which have been torn down. The 54-foot tall, 280-feet-by-450-feet building could be ready for occupancy as early as next fall. Bently said the building will be well out of the 100-year flood plain and will be very strong seismically.

n High ground. “It will be on a high spot where it can’t possibly get flooded,” he said. “Our other big concern is earthquakes. A 100 miles to the south, at Mono Lake, is a very active seismic area. A good precaution is to make the all steel constructed building as strong as possible.”

Bently said a seismic expert from the University of Nevada, Reno, has reviewed and approved the building’s design.

“I’m thinking a number 10 (magnitude quake) could knock it down, but hopefully, it would survive smaller ones,” he said.

Bently said he is looking past the current economic turmoil in the world.

“We’re looking toward a better economy, (so) we’ll go ahead with the big building – it’s an affirmation,” he said.

Pete Wysocki, an assistant planner in the county’s Community Development Department, said Friday Bently’s permit to begin building the road has been approved and is ready to be issued.

“At this point, nothing has been submitted as far as the building for actual on-site construction,” Wysocki said. “The road and on-site (building) construction are done under separate permits.”

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