The $44.3 billion first phase of Mexico's five-year infrastructure plan underwritten by the private sector is "positive" and could be economically beneficial, said Moody's analyst Ariane Ortiz-Bollin. "If the implementation of this is fast and effective and it positively impacts the negative view of investment ... it can have a positive multiplying effect on growth," she said.
A critical flaw in a bedrock bidding model Contractors often rely on the Friedman model to maximize both the probability they'll get a project and their profit if they do. A University of Michigan engineer found an error that encourages riskier bids from single bidders, potentially losing business. But there's a solution.
The US Department of Transportation has awarded $485 million in grants to fund infrastructure improvements at 108 airports in 48 states. This round of Airport Improvement Program grants includes $4.25 million to rehabilitate a runway at Indianapolis International Airport, $7 million to extend a taxiway in New Orleans and $10 million to rehabilitate a terminal building in Asheville, N.C.
A proposed dam along the Amite River in Louisiana would include an outlet of three concrete box culverts to manage the flow of water, according to the US Army Corps of Engineers. The USACE has released other details of the $2.3 billion project, which aims to deter flooding in densely populated regions of three parishes.
AECOM has won a contract to provide technical support for the design and construction of a high-speed rail line between Lyon, France, and Turin, Italy. The project includes a twin bored base tunnel that AECOM says will be the longest railway tunnel ever constructed.
The Environmental Protection Agency's Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act program is providing $585 million in credit assistance to Orange County, Calif., for a desalination plant that will increase the supply of drinking water, writes Jordan Brandman of the Orange County Water District Board of Directors. "One of the barriers to developing all-new water supplies, including seawater desalination, has been capital costs, however, this WIFIA credit assistance program will help reduce the cost of building the project," he writes.
A train that would operate on the same principle as a rail gun, propelling its cars through a succession of magnetic loops at up to 500 mph, is envisioned as a green alternative to airline flights. The rail-free AeroSlider concept, brainchild of strategic design consultancy Manyone, would send its spacious cars through loops 65 feet above ground, potentially spanning continents while posing little hazard to animal or human traffic below.
A recent study suggests a public-private hybrid between autonomous technologies and physical networking, with private-company installations that offer open access to all technologies. "Under policy-induced competition, governments would solicit bids for companies to install, maintain, and profit from certain kinds of smart infrastructure," and open access would be required as part of those contracts, writes Andrea O'Sullivan.
Researchers at the Minnesota Department of Transportation applied civil integrated management technology to a project in Carver County and found tools such as reality capture and geographic information system overlays can save time and money in early phases of a project. The researchers identified potential research areas to improve early CIM design and offered action items for agencies.
University of Texas at Arlington civil engineer Yu Zhang has received funding to study the best way to evaluate the effects of natural disasters on industries and waterways around the Neches River basin in southeast Texas. One aspect of Zhang's work will examine how effectively wetlands can filter out pollutants that enter waterways in Texas after prolonged flooding.
After Black Friday, take a break from your holiday buying on #GivingTuesday and make a donation to the ASCE Foundation. Your gift will support ASCE initiatives benefiting the new generation of civil engineers. Learn more, then offer your donation.
A professional engineer's license proves you can perform and oversee engineering work independently - known as being "in responsible charge." Cliff Jones, S.E., P.E., PSP, M.ASCE, a senior structural engineer at Jensen Hughes in Portland, Oregon, shares the top six benefits of having a P.E. in a post to ASCE's Career by Design. ASCE's review courses for the October P.E. exams begin Aug. 1.