Stratosphere 20


Twenty years ago last month, Wright Engineers’ CEO Brent Wright, along with Bob Stupak and key members of the design and construction team gathered at the top of the Stratosphere Tower for the inaugural Big Shot ride. The tower was originally envisioned to be just over 1,000 feet tall, but part way through construction, Bob Stupak requested a design modification that would nearly double the height to 1,828 feet. Brent, who was the lead structural engineer for the tower, worked for several weeks to design a scheme to strengthen the foundation and tower legs and add 800 feet to the top. Ultimately, the “supertower” design was too costly and the final height was settled at 1,149 feet. Since then, Wright Engineers has been called upon to provide structural engineering services for the Big Shot, X-Scream, Insanity, Sky Jump, rooftop pool, and other additions.



International Refugees

When Hayley Smith, administrative assistant in Wright’s Phoenix office, saw first-hand the needs of Syrian refugees in her visit to Greece last December, she wanted to do something about it. “I decided I would help in a small way by sending a container full of items that camps need, and in clearly-labeled boxes,” she said. “I had a simple goal to fill a container within a year I set up an Amazon wish list of supplies that camps requested, and donations slowly started trickling in.” Hayley says she would come home at night to find a few boxes at her front door. Then, a post she wrote went viral and suddenly so many packages were arriving that she had to find a warehouse. “We’ve been able to collect a 20 foot container worth of goods, which is incredible! But, it also takes two months to ship, and already one of the huge camps is getting shut down,” she said. Hayley worries where those people will be sent, and if they will eventually receive the aid. But, “In the end, the items we’re collecting will always be needed. It’s just managing to get them to who needs them the most and in the least amount of time.” Our hats off to Hayley and her humanitarian efforts. Click on Hayley’s Amazon wish list link if you’d like to help.