Five "mini-megacities" were undergoing a construction boom right before the coronavirus pandemic. A return to those cities shows their construction markets have held up well, building on strengths that made the cities desirable in the first place.
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The Biden administration wants all lead service lines and water pipes in the US to be replaced, but experts say that poor record-keeping at the local level presents a challenge. Many water utilities don't know the extent of their lead service lines, and locating all the pipes will be a giant project, according to Diane VanDe Hei, CEO of the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies.
A $50 million Interstate 49 project in Lafayette, La., is among transportation projects covered by $216 million the state is receiving from the federal relief package passed in December, Gov. John Bel Edwards says. Louisiana's share also includes $29 million for a new Interstate 10 bridge in Lake Charles and $20 million for four transportation planning agencies.
The Rhode Island Department of Transportation's 2021 construction season covers 50 projects worth $1.4 billion. The department plans to improve 146 bridges, including replacing the 1,300-foot northbound Providence Viaduct for $265 million.
The Colorado Department of Transportation will use $7.5 million from the state's Strategic Fund to purchase 59 acres of a deactivated Union Pacific rail yard that are needed for a proposed rail line and an expansion of Interstate 25. The location is ideal for an Amtrak line, state business official Jeff Kraft says.
The Riverside County, Calif., Transportation Commission has begun construction on a $270 million ramp linking toll lanes on state Route 91 and Interstate 15 in Corona. I-15 express lanes from Eastvale and Jurupa Valley to Corona opened this month.
The cost of construction materials has soared in recent months. Charts detail the extent of increases across major materials, with softwood lumber, particle board, plywood, and gas and diesel fuel among the biggest climbers.
A tunnel-boring machine nicknamed MudHoney is removing 400,000 tons of soil as it creates a 2.7-mile-long tunnel in Seattle to take in overflow untreated wastewater and stormwater that would otherwise pollute nearby waters. The machine's parts, shipped from Germany and assembled on-site, include 18 double-disc cutters, 48 scrapers and 16 bucket cutters.
The Biden administration's proposed corporate tax increase to fund infrastructure would marginally affect contractors that are established as pass-through entities, says Erin Roberts, global engineering and construction leader at EY. However, AGC's Matthew Turkstra says increases to S corporation taxes could be in a later version of the infrastructure plan.
President Joe Biden said ahead of a second bipartisan discussion with lawmakers on his infrastructure plan he was "prepared to compromise, prepared to see what we can do, what we get together on." Republican lawmakers have said they want a more modest package than the $2 trillion-plus proposal from Biden.
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