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Regulations will facilitate integration of small UAS into U.S. aviation system

Washington, D.C. — The Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration proposed a framework of regulations that would allow routine use of certain small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in today’s aviation system, while maintaining flexibility to accommodate future technological innovations. The FAA proposal offers safety rules for small UAS (under 55 pounds) conducting non-recreational operations. The rule would limit flights to daylight and visual-line-of-sight operations. It also addresses height restrictions, operator certification, optional use of a visual observer, aircraft registration and marking, and operational limits.

3-D model could help manage U.S. bridge maintenance crisis

Lincoln, Neb. — Nearly one out of every nine bridges in the United States is deemed structurally deficient and potentially dangerous, according to the Federal Highway Administration. It would cost an estimated $70 billion to catch up with the nation's backlog of nearly 70,000 bridges in need of repair. However, a University of Nebraska-Lincoln associate professor has developed a data management tool that could help officials monitor deteriorating bridges and prioritize their repair.

Record 2014 for M&A activity in U.S. A/E industry

Houston — Fueled by a resurgent economy that boosted firm profits, domestic merger & acquisition activity in the architecture and engineering (A/E) industry hit record levels in 2014, according to Morrissey Goodale LLC, a business management consulting and training firm to the A/E industry. After two years of relative stagnation, the M&A marketplace in the United States regained momentum in 2014 thanks to greater industry confidence on the part of buyers and investors.

Key West wins 2014 Plant Operations Excellence Award

Denver — The Florida Department of Environmental Protection recently selected the CH2M HILL-operated Key West Richard A. Heyman Wastewater Treatment Plant to receive its 2014 Plant Operations Excellence Award. The award is presented annually to facilities that demonstrate a commitment to excellence in management, operations, and maintenance.

Idaho ‘lateral slide’ bridge project wins excellence award

Boise, Idaho — The project to replace the 83-year-old Lardo Bridge in McCall, open to traffic since November 2014, won a recent “Excellence in Concrete” award from the Intermountain Chapter of the American Concrete Institute. The bridge is located at the outlet to Payette Lake on the southwest shore. Ralph L. Wadsworth and Lochner used ITD's conceptual design to complete the bridge design and build the new bridge. The construction/design contract was $3.64 million.

DOT Secretary Foxx announces bus tour to highlight infrastructure deficit

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx will launch a four-day bus tour on Tuesday, Feb. 17. Beginning in Tallahassee, Fla., and visiting five states and the District of Columbia, Secretary Foxx will hit the road to highlight the importance of investing in America’s infrastructure, and to encourage Congress to act on a long-term transportation bill.

Nominees announced for Global Project of the Year Awards

Washington, D.C. — CG/LA Infrastructure, Inc. announced the finalists for the 2015 Global Project of the Year Awards. Voting for the award winners is open to the public, Project of the Year awards are given in five categories covering strategy, job creation, environmental impact, finance, and engineering.

NTSB urges immediate action on emergency response to smoke in tunnels

Washington, D.C. — The National Transportation Safety Board issued urgent recommendations to the Federal Transit Administration, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the American Public Transportation Association calling for improved ventilation procedures during smoke and fire events in tunnels.

Acting Maryland Transportation Secretary orders targeted inspections of bridges statewide

Hanover, Md. — Working to ensure motorist safety and alleviate concerns regarding the structural integrity of Maryland bridges, Acting Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete K. Rahn ordered the State Highway Administration (SHA) and Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) to immediately inspect all state-owned bridges of similar age and condition to the I-495/I-95 (Capital Beltway) bridge that is being repaired after a piece of concrete fell onto a car below driving along Suitland Road on Feb. 10. The statewide directive applies to 27 state-owned bridges — all built prior to 1969, have traffic underneath and are in similar condition to the Capital Beltway bridge.

Stevens & Wilkinson reimagines Georgia state capitol grounds

Atlanta — Stevens & Wilkinson, a full-service commercial architecture, engineering and interior design firm based in Atlanta and Columbia, S.C., announced the completion of Liberty Plaza, an outdoor civic space that expands Georgia’s Capitol Hill grounds across Capitol Avenue for public use.

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