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12 DOT Secretaries send open letter to Congress

Washington, D.C. — As Congress considers legislation to avoid a shortfall of the Highway Trust Fund, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and 11 of his predecessors offered an open letter to Congress, urging them to address the nation’s long-term transportation needs. In addition to Secretary Foxx, Secretaries Ray LaHood, Mary Peters, Norman Mineta, Rodney Slater, Frederico Peña, Samuel Skinner, Andrew Card, James Burnley, Elizabeth Dole, William Coleman and Alan Boyd all signed the letter. Their message: Congress’ work doesn’t end with the bill under consideration. Transportation in America still needs a much larger, longer-term investment.

Dallas project and TxDOT’s Zapalac honored at ARTBA P3 Conference

Washington, D.C. — A 30-year veteran of transportation project delivery and a $1.2 billion highway project in North Central Texas were recognized as models of excellence in innovative transportation financing during a special July 17 luncheon at the American Road & Transportation Builders Association’s (ARTBA) 26th Annual Public Private Partnership (P3) Conference in the Nation’s Capital.

Zurich advises on solar panel fire and structural load risks

Schaumburg, Ill. — As businesses across the world increasingly are turning to green technology for lowering energy costs and reducing their own carbon footprints, Zurich is working to help risk managers understand the fire and unexpected structural load risks associated with photovoltaic (PV) solar panel systems and how they can protect themselves from those risks. Key information related to the risks and challenges and recommended solutions was recently released in a Zurich RiskTopics white paper on photovoltaic systems.

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.

ARTBA: EPA rescinding valid clean water permits threatens transportation

Washington, D.C. — A decision by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revoke a valid Clean Water Act (CWA) permit from a mining operation in West Virginia could have ripple effects on the ability of public agencies and private firms to deliver urgently needed transportation improvement projects for the nation, American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) First Vice Chairman Nick Ivanoff, president & CEO of New York-based Ammann & Whitney, told members of Congress.

2014 Transportation infrastructure databases released

Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics released the 2014 edition of the National Transportation Atlas Databases (NTAD) this week. The NTAD is a compilation of datasets representing the nation’s transportation infrastructure including more than 500,000 miles of roadway, over 607,000 bridges and 19,721 airports.

Two Innovation Awards celebrate intelligent structural monitoring project

Princeton Junction, N.J. — The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) and Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) have separately judged and awarded the A38(M) Tame Valley Viaduct management project with a 2014 Innovation Award. Key to management of the viaduct is the MISTRAS monitoring system comprising over 1,100 sensors, which is one of the largest bridge monitoring systems in the United Kingdom.

Idaho’s first diverging diamond interchange receives award

Boise, Idaho — The Chubbuck Diverging Diamond Interchange, which connects U.S. 91/Yellowstone Highway over the Interstate 86 system in Chubbuck, Idaho, has received the Idaho Transportation Department’s (ITD) 2014 Excellence in Transportation Award in the large design category. The Excellence in Transportation Awards are sponsored by the ITD to recognize outstanding initiatives in developing, planning, and implementing transportation projects throughout the state.

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