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March 13, 2013
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News for and about the civil engineering community

  Top Story 
  • $2B Seattle tunnel update: Pit for "Bertha" almost ready
    The launch pit and underground vault are almost set for "Bertha," the world's largest single-bore drill that will dig the Highway 99 tunnel in Seattle. A concrete floor is being poured to support the machine and huge cranes are being assembled to move the pieces of the borer into the pit. The machine is being shipped from Japan and is expected to arrive this month. The $2  billion tunnel is slated to open to traffic at the beginning of 2016. The Seattle Times (3/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Infrastructure Watch 
  • N.J. governor previews post-Sandy rebuilding plan
    Of the $1.83 billion in post-Sandy, federal recovery aid for New Jersey, half will be spent to assist homeowners and business owners whose properties were damaged during the hurricane. Some of the money will be used to provide grants and loans for eligible residents for flood mitigation, resettlement, rebuilding and construction of new housing units, which is expected to create thousands of jobs. The Philadelphia Inquirer/Christie Chronicles blog (3/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Ariz. transportation pros focus on alternative funding
    In the next five years, the state of Arizona will lose $350 million in transportation funding due to declining revenues. Seeking solutions to this concern, the Arizona chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America held a meeting to brainstorm on ways to increase transportation funding. Other groups and state agencies are doing the same. Maintaining state transportation infrastructure is "like a car. If you don’t invest in that vehicle, it will break down later," said Department of Transportation Planning Director Scott Omer. The Arizona Republic (Phoenix) (tiered subscription model) (3/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Trends & Technology 
  • Concrete Canvas Shelter has "far-reaching" implications
    Source: YouTube/National Geographic
    Take some concrete canvas -- that contains all the elements of concrete -- shape it into the structure you want, wet it, inflate it and watch it harden into a concrete structure within a day. The Concrete Canvas Shelter, created by British firm PSFK, has far-reaching implications. "[I]t's going to allow people to build permanent structures in a fraction of the time that it would have taken using traditional building techniques," its developers say. (3/11), YouTube/National Geographic (3/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  Sustainable Development 
  • Work continues on Abu Dhabi's sustainable Masdar City
    Now home to a campus for 120 students, Masdar City is again at work building a "futuristic environmentally friendly" city in Abu Dhabi. Global financial conditions have pushed the anticipated completion date back to 2025. The Masdar Institute for Science and Technology has completed its second construction phase, and buildings for General Electric and Siemens are being planned. "[T]he challenge is not to have Masdar or several Masdars, but to have the traditional infrastructure change and transform, and actual cities transform," said Laurence Tubiana of the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations. Deutsche Welle (Germany) (3/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Advancing the Profession 
  • How CEOs build winning teams
    CEOs need great teams if they want great companies, which means holding new hires to a high standard from the start, writes venture capitalist Ben Horowitz. It's vital to make it clear to executives that performance evaluations will be based on new criteria as the organization grows, he adds. Ben Horowitz blog (3/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How successful executives manage their time
    The best executives know how to organize their time into large chunks so they can make progress on big projects, Eric Barker writes, citing a book by management expert Pete Drucker. "If you're just doing what comes in, you're on the treadmill, not making a difference," Barker writes. Barking Up The Wrong Tree blog (3/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  News from ASCE 
  • See the 2013 OCEA winner announced at ASCE’s OPAL Gala
    Join ASCE in honoring engineering’s best at the 2013 Outstanding Projects And Leaders Gala, Thursday, March 21, at the Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel, Arlington, Va. This black-tie event is a great opportunity to join fellow engineers to recognize peers' lifetime achievements and winning projects. The 2013 OPAL leadership awards, the Charles Pankow Award and and Michel Award will be presented. The five Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement finalists will be honored, and the OCEA winner revealed. Attend an event you'll never forget. Get your tickets now. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

  • Civil Engineering online exclusive: New Brazilian Cancer Center Designed With Patients in Mind
    ASCE Civil Engineering magazine online  

    A new center for cancer research and treatment in Rio de Janeiro focuses on making the patient experience easier and more uplifting. See how the design contributes, then explore more fascinating articles at

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