Civil News

Researchers study ‘smart’ rocks use for detecting bridge damage

Rolla, Mo. — It’s hard to gauge how structurally sound a bridge is when its foundation is buried in a riverbed deep below the water’s surface. New “smart” rocks that are being developed by researchers at Missouri University of Science and Technology will give engineers an accurate, easy and cost-effective tool to monitor a bridge’s foundation, in real time.

Wastewater treatment plant enhances city’s sustainable image

Dubuque, Iowa — Sustainability is classically and creatively exemplified in the City of Dubuque’s recently completed Water and Resource Recovery Center (W&RRC) project. The project represents more than 20 years of collaborative civil engineering by the City of Dubuque, its citizens, and Strand Associates, Inc. After completion of a 20-year facilities plan, the city hired Strand to complete the design and construction of upgrades to the W&RRC.

Private water companies positioned to bridge $500 billion water investment gap in U.S.

Boston — U.S. private water markets are poised for significant growth, according to a new report from Bluefield Research. With an infrastructure investment gap of more than $500 billion for drinking water and wastewater treatment over the next 20 years, a revised regulatory landscape is shaping new opportunities for private players looking to invest strategically in U.S. water.

Watershed rehabilitation funding to repair dams in 26 states

Perry, Okla. — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that communities across the nation will benefit from a $262 million investment to rehabilitate dams that provide critical infrastructure and protect public health and safety. Funding will provide rehabilitation assistance for 150 dams in 26 states. Funds will be used for planning, design or construction. Also, 500 dam sites will be assessed for safety through NRCS’ Watershed Rehabilitation Program.

APWA announces new Certified Stormwater Managers

Kansas City, Mo. — The American Public Works Association (APWA) announced that six public works professionals have recently earned their credential as Certified Stormwater Managers (CSM). The APWA CSM certification is intended for water experts in both the public and private sectors who coordinate and implement stormwater management programs for city, county, state, provincial, and federal agencies. These professionals assist in administering drainage, flood control, and water quality programs. Since its inception, the APWA CSM program has certified 96 Stormwater Managers in North America.

Sustainability is major focus at Plastic Pipes conference

Chicago — The contribution of plastic pipe systems to sustainable development will be one of the key discussion points at the upcoming Plastic Pipes XVII Conference and Exhibition in Chicago. Evidence from environmental assessments carried out by independent technical institutes will underline the advantages of these systems. Furthermore, recent sustainable developments for mitigating flooding, seismic events, creating high-yield horticulture and transforming desert landscapes will be considered.

USGS program to help meet need for high-quality elevation data

Reston, Va. — The U.S. Geological Survey, along with other federal, state, local and private agencies, is establishing a new 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) designed to respond to the growing needs for three-dimensional mapping data of the United States. This coordinated partnership can help meet the country’s needs for high-quality, 3D elevation data.

EPA provides tool, webinar to help communities become more flood resilient

Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a new tool to help communities prepare for, deal with, and recover from floods. The Flood Resilience Checklist offers strategies that communities can consider, such as conserving land in flood-prone areas; directing new development to safer areas; and using green infrastructure approaches, such as installing rain gardens, to manage stormwater. EPA will host a webinar on lessons learned from the Vermont project on Wednesday, August 13. The webinar will feature speakers from FEMA, the state of Vermont, and the Mad River Valley Planning District.

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