After the incident at the Oroville Dam earlier this month, California Gov. Jerry Brown says the state plans to spend $437 million on high-priority flood projects, but not repairs to the spillway at the Oroville Dam, which is the responsibility of several water districts and water contractors.
In April, US Customs and Border Protection intends to begin awarding construction contracts for a wall between Mexico and the US. Bids will be due March, but it's unclear when Congress will allocate the necessary funds.
The Texas Department of Transportation is moving forward with the long-planned reconstruction of two major interchanges and an interstate segment in downtown Houston and plans to allocate more than $900 million for the project. The idea was considered a long shot at one point but could turn into the "most significant freeway project in anyone's lifetime" in the Houston area.
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao says passing major infrastructure legislation President Donald Trump promised during his campaign will be challenging. Trump has proposed using public-private partnerships to fund the effort, but Chao acknowledges that other financing methods will be needed.
London Concrete is using a dense concrete mixture to minimize vibrations and noise at the Crossrail project in the UK. About 5,232 cubic yards of the special concrete were placed.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt announced plans to begin repealing at least three regulations this week. Pruitt is targeting the Waters of the US rule, the Clean Power Plan and a rule limiting methane emissions for repeal as part of an effort to boost "regulatory certainty" and shift EPA's focus to fulfilling its main mission of protecting the air and water.
Public-private partnerships can play and important role in funding infrastructure projects and can provide costs savings through design and long-term operations. Just because some private companies executed a project poorly, which has led to the failure of some projects, there is no reason not to use the financing method, argues D. Bruce Gabriel of Squire Patton Boggs.
Henry Petroski, a professor of civil engineering at Duke University, notes that repairing damaged infrastructure to its original luster can be challenging and often takes longer than originally anticipated, even if the funding is available. He says new technology and design-build contracts can help make the process more cost-effective and efficient.
Precast concrete segments were used on an elevated section of the multibillion dollar Metro North West project in Sydney in New South Wales, Australia, but a joint between two of the panels recently failed. Aurecon's report on the failure details the multiple reasons.
Replacement of the deck on the nearly 1-mile Macdonald Bridge in Nova Scotia, Canada, is finished. For about two years, the suspension bridge operated during the weekday and was rebuilt on the weekends, an "an engineering feat ... [that required] essentially taking the bridge apart every weekend and then putting it back together for people to drive over the next morning," said Alison MacDonald of Halifax Harbour Bridges.
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