La. roads and bridges get D's from local ASCE Section | NYC rail infrastructure crumbling, needs billions | Proposed federal budget cuts could threaten $38B in public transit projects
April 27, 2017
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La. roads and bridges get D's from local ASCE Section
The Louisiana Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers awarded a D to state roads and a D+ to bridges, similar to the grades given in a 2012 review. Louisiana is considering an increase to the fuel tax to fund infrastructure, as the state faces a $13 billion backlog of work on roads and bridges.
The Advocate (Baton Rouge, La.) (4/26) 
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Infrastructure Watch
NYC rail infrastructure crumbling, needs billions
(Mark Makela/Getty Images)
The rail lines at Penn Station in New York City have seen two derailments in recent months, and Amtrak, which owns the lines, says underfunding of repairs is to blame -- the same problem with the tunnel under the Hudson River. The planned $20 billion Gateway project would build a new tunnel under the Hudson and improve rail infrastructure in the region.
CBS News (4/26) 
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Proposed federal budget cuts could threaten $38B in public transit projects
A report by the American Public Transportation Association and the Economic Development Research Group states that budget cuts proposed by President Donald Trump could affect $38 billion worth of planned public transportation projects. The cuts could also lead to 800,000 fewer construction and related jobs; some in Congress have voiced opposition to the proposed cuts.
The Hill (4/26) 
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$1.3B aluminum plant to be built in Ky.
$1.3B aluminum plant to be built in Ky.
(Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Braidy Industries plans to start construction on a $1.3 billion aluminum-manufacturing plant in Kentucky's Greenup County next year, a decision made after the state Legislature passed a bill that prohibits involuntary union dues. The 2.5 million-square-foot facility will create 1,000 construction jobs.
Daily News (Bowling Green, Ky.)/The Associated Press (4/26),  The Lane Report (Lexington, Ky.) (4/26) 
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Trends & Technology
Md. selects design-build team for $100M road-improvement project
The Maryland Department of Transportation has selected a design-build team of more than 15 firms for a $100 million project to improve Interstate 270. The project will add 23 lane miles to the road, and work should finish in 2019. (4/26) 
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N.Y. revisits multibillion-dollar tunneling project
N.Y. studying multi-billion dollar tunneling project
(Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
The New York Department of Transportation has resisted efforts to spend between $2.5 billion and $3.1 billion to build a tunnel to replace a 1.4-mile section of Interstate 81 in Syracuse, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo has requested that the agency hire a consultant to study the option. Details of nine other tunnels built in the US over the last 10 years, including Boston's Big Dig, show the kinds of challenges New York might face if it opts for a tunnel.
The Post-Standard (Syracuse, N.Y.) (4/26) 
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Renderings released on planned 66-story tower in L.A.
CallisonRTKL has released renderings for the 66-story Figueroa Centre tower in Los Angeles, which would be the third-tallest in the city. The tower will be a mix of residential, hotel and retail space, but a construction timeline hasn't been determined.
The Architect's Newspaper (4/26) 
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It’s time to restore America’s infrastructure
In the ASCE 2017 Infrastructure Report Card, America's infrastructure received a D+. Aging, underperforming infrastructure hurts the national economy and costs American families $3,400 each year. Learn more about the Report Card and be part of the solution.
Sustainable Development
Energy Dept. reality show challenges cities on energy use
The Department of Energy released the third installment of its reality web series, "Better Buildings Challenge SWAP," which pits groups against each other to find ways to improve each others' energy systems. The episode features Boston facing off against Atlanta, with experts analyzing the cities' streets, airports and libraries to make their energy systems more efficient.
Fast Company online (4/25) 
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Advancing the Profession
Be a better listener if you want to understand
People often omit or gloss over key details when delivering a message, and it's also easy as a listener to hear only what you need to respond, writes David Grossman. He offers tactics for hearing "what's not being said," including paying attention to body language and emotional hints.
LeaderCommunicator Blog (4/24) 
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ASCE News Daily
Free ASCE paper studies effectiveness of limestone in cements
ASCE Materials Journal
How effective are cements containing varying amounts of limestone binder content and degrees of grinding quality? Researchers tested seven industrial-scale cement varieties and shared their findings in the March issue of ASCE's Journal of Materials in Civil Engineering. Benefit from their conclusions free for a limited time, courtesy of ASCE Library.
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Civil Engineering online exclusive: "Researchers Developing Cellphone-Based Earthquake Detector"
ASCE CE magazine
Cellphones are being tested for use as an early warning system in a crowdsourced earthquake detection network. Consider its potential in ASCE's Civil Engineering online. Dive into all of the Civil Engineering online features at online.

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