In this life, it’s about more than doing a job well – it’s about having a drive to do good.

Almost Home Kids, affiliated with Lurie Children’s Hospital, is a nonprofit transitional and respite care facility for children with medical complexities. A vital bridge between hospital and home, Almost Home serves as a short-term pediatric community-based healthcare home for children with chronic conditions, training parents in the vital caretaking skills they’ll need to bring their child home safely.

But for Almost Home Kids, safety in the parking lot had become a challenge: their asphalt was deteriorated, their lot wasn’t level, and their accessibility needed to be optimized. Considering that many children arriving or departing from Almost Home are connected to life-saving wires and tubes, a single bump or pothole could cause havoc. We found this unacceptable, and wanted to do everything in our power to help to deliver a safe and ADA-compliant product. Working with our contact Gail Linhart, we stepped in to smooth things out for this important, special place.


Almost Home Kids


“Before we even saw the high quality of the finished project, we were drawn to Maul’s values, because they felt the same way we did,” shares Gail. “We knew about their Good Neighbor Award. They’re a company that gives back, and you don’t see that much. On top of that, they were a pleasure to work with. Eric Maul is absolutely fabulous. We got to know him as he and Paul guided us through the daunting maze of paperwork, local DuPage ordinances, and the challenging grant process. They were very helpful in accomplishing what we needed. I wish everybody was like that.”


Almost Home Kids


To us, being in this business is worth nothing if we don’t lay a strong foundation for what’s right. We begin that with our relationship to the client. Paul Price remembers the initial meeting well:

“That 1st day tour has stuck in my mind for 6 years. When you see the children, you realize you have no problems. Every man on the crew took the tour. It became our mission to get it done, because it had a direct impact on their lives.

After our consultations with Gail, our team’s goals were clear: accomplish smooth rides and level surfaces, and facilitate easy access for the convenience of parent and child alike.

“Another thing that truly impressed us was Maul’s meticulous planning,” remarks Gail.

Because we’re a 24-hour facility of round-the-clock care, driveway accessibility is a complete necessity: we need to be able to facilitate ambulance arrivals and departures. We were glad Maul was our partner, because they have extensive medical experience managing 24-hour facilities.”

We’ve always believed that taking your time is the fastest way to do a job right. This was a job with many moving components, but it was a job that moved us. When we take on a job, we stay committed. And for this one, there was no going back, no change orders – we even parked our foreman there for hours just to get the inspection. We wanted to do what’s right, and do it right.


Almost Home Kids


Almost Home Kids


“After an incredibly smooth planning process, Maul developed a procedure that allowed for the children and their families to arrive and our employees to get to work with ease, phasing out the asphalt installation in sections over the course of two weeks,” reports Gail. “The concrete similarly took two weeks, waiting until it was secure. When it was finished, we couldn’t believe the result. Maul was on top of their game. I never had to reach out and say, ‘this is a problem’. They anticipated our needs and were on hand every step of the way. They were always there for me, and always there for the kids.”

We’re proud to continue to be Almost Home Kids’ paving partner: we’re coming back to sealcoat this summer, and donating it. Why go these extra miles? For us, that’s not even a question, because we feel the same way Gail does:

“It’s all about the kids,” she smiles. “You see them develop in the care that we give them. Maybe they are even able to walk. They grow up to be little people, which overwhelms our hearts because they get to go home and be loved in their house, not in an institution.”

Most of us at Maul are fathers, so this is a cause close to our hearts. “We saw firsthand how important this was when the children watched as we carried out the job,” recounts Paul. “It had an effect on them, and it’s had an effect on us to this day. There was a little boy Gail would take by the hand who wanted to see the trucks. To us, it’s an everyday sight. To him, it meant the world. We all went home and hugged our children. This is what life is all about.”

Every child deserves to be safe in a loving home. To have a better path in life. And when we improve the transport situation for organizations like Almost Home Kids, we help them improve outcomes for children of all kinds.


When you join a tradition that’s changed the industry’s landscape for more than 30 years, your position demands hard-earned respect.



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