Who Will Win ENR’s 2018 Award of Excellence?

Bath’s updated abbey will draw warmth from the still functioning Great Roman Drain to replace the former monastery’s dilapidated Victorian-era heating system.

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St. Louis — Net Zero, LLC broke ground in January on three display homes for its Saint Louis Park Place residential community within the NorthSide Regeneration development in North St. Louis City. Net Zero purchased lots from NorthSide Regeneration to build 250 energy-efficient, single-family homes adjacent to the site of the future multibillion-dollar National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) Western Headquarters.

The display homes, under construction at the intersection of Montgomery and 20th streets, are expected to be completed in April, according to Net Zero owner Dwight Arant and his builder Jon Bish, with construction of sold homes set to begin this spring.  Arant, a former Marine and retired businessman who was born and spent his early childhood in North St. Louis City, said he is looking forward to bringing more residents back to the community that his family once called home.

“We are excited to be working with NorthSide Regeneration to bring this residential community project to North St. Louis City,” said Arant. “Saint Louis Park Place will provide much-needed housing for the existing community and future employees of NGA and St. Louis as a whole. While setting the standard for energy efficiency in new homes, the homes are designed to align with the historical characteristics of the area.”

The new homes are designed by St. Louis-based architect Klitzing Welsch Associates. Prices for the homes will be set after the display homes are completed, and are expected to range in size from 1,200 to more than 3,000 sq. ft. One, two- and three-story models will be available with a range of options.  All the homes will have the potential to be “Net Zero,” which means the homes will produce enough renewable energy (from solar PV) to power themselves. This means that utility bills to heat, cool and power the homes will be very low, or eliminated.

NorthSide Regeneration (NSR) is a mixed-use community development – a self-sustaining neighborhood of people, cultures, economic opportunity, safety and education with the infrastructure and growth to support key, necessary services for the community. The original development encompasses over 1,500 acres and borders downtown St. Louis. Jobs have always been the primary motivator for NSR with a goal of more than 43,000 construction jobs and 22,000 permanent jobs generated by the development’s activity.

The post Net Zero Breaks Ground in NorthSide Regeneration Development appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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A new way of protecting concrete from fire damage using materials recycled from old tires has been successfully tested by researchers at the University of Sheffield. The team used fibers extracted from the textile reinforcement commonly embedded into tires to guarantee their performance. Adding these fibers to the concrete mix was shown to reduce the concrete’s tendency to spall – where surface layers of concrete break off – explosively under the intense heat from a fire.

Using manmade polypropylene (PP) fibers to protect concrete structures from damage or collapse if a fire breaks out is a relatively well-known technique. Many modern structures, including large scale engineering projects such as Crossrail, have used concrete that includes PP fibers for protection against fire spalling.

The Sheffield study is the first to show that these fibers do not have to be made from raw materials, but can instead be reclaimed from used tires. The results are published in the journal Fire Technology.

“We’ve shown that these recycled fibers do an equivalent job to ‘virgin’ PP fibers which require lots of energy and resources to produce,” explains lead author Dr Shan-Shan Huang, in the Department of Civil and Structural Engineering at the University of Sheffield. “Using waste materials in this way is less expensive, and better for the planet.”

The fibers melt under the intense heat from a fire, leaving networks of tiny channels. This means that moisture trapped within the concrete is able to escape, rather than becoming trapped, which causes the concrete to break out explosively.

“Because the fibers are so small, they don’t affect the strength or the stiffness of the concrete,” says Dr Huang. “Their only job is to melt when heat becomes intense. Concrete is a brittle material, so will break out relatively easily without having these fibers help reducing the pressure within the concrete.”

Protecting the concrete from fire spalling means that steel reinforcements running through the concrete are also protected. When the steel reinforcements are exposed to extreme heat they weaken very quickly, meaning a structure is much more likely to collapse. The Liverpool Waterfront Car Park suffered this kind of damage during a fire in 2017, leading to the entire structure eventually having to be demolished.

Collaborating with Twincon, a Sheffield-based company that develops innovative solutions for the construction industry, the researchers have also developed technologies for reclaiming the fibers from the used tires. This involved separating the fibers from the tire rubber, untangling the fibers into strands, and then distributing them evenly into the concrete mixture.

The team plan to continue testing the material with different ratios of the fibers to concrete, and also using different types of concrete. They also plan to find out more about how the materials react to heat at the microstructure level. By scanning the concrete as it is heated, they will be able to see more precisely the structural changes taking place inside the material.

The post Researchers use reclaimed tire fibers to improve fire resistance of concrete appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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Conshohocken, Pa. — ASTM International will sponsor Kaitlyn Bishay, a senior civil engineering major at the University of Alabama, for the prestigious Washington Internships for Students of Engineering (WISE) program. This announcement coincided with “Girl Day” of Engineers Week, which encourages girls and young women to consider careers in engineering.

WISE is a competitive summer program in Washington, D.C., offered annually to about a dozen engineering juniors and seniors interested in public policy. The program provides housing and a stipend.

Bishay is pursuing a degree in civil engineering with a minor in educational studies. She is particularly interested in civil and environmental engineering policy, specifically related to water. Bishay’s activities include leadership programs like “Beat Auburn Beat Hunger,” an annual food drive designed to end food insecurity in Alabama, and clubs such as the University of Alabama Asian-American Student Association and Crimson Clay.

After an internship with John Labib & Associates, Structural Engineers in Los Angeles, Bishay’s interest in policy developed, stemming from what she calls “a belief in a greener tomorrow,” and “the intersection of public policy and the public good.”

DiscoverE’s Engineers Week (http://discovere.org) recognizes the many contributions engineers make to society. The WISE internship is one of many scholarships and grant programs ASTM International provides to student members. Students can join free (www.astm.org/studentmember). For more about the WISE program visit www.wise-intern.org.

The post ASTM Selects Civil Engineering Student for Washington Internship appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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Research Triangle Park, N.C. — For the second year in a row, the International Society of Automation (ISA) — through its Water and Wastewater Industries Division (WWID) — is supporting an initiative designed to demonstrate the value of intelligent water systems, smart water technologies, and leveraging data for improved decision-making.

The 2019 LIFT Intelligent Water Systems Challenge is a competition that encourages students, professionals, and technology enthusiasts to develop innovative solutions, particularly those using advanced sensing and/or data technology, that can be applied to water and wastewater collection, treatment, and distribution.

The Challenge is a joint effort of The Water Research Foundation (WRF) and the Water Environment Federation (WEF). Serving as supporting organizations are: ISA, the American Water Works Association (AWWA), the Cleveland Water Alliance, the Water Council, the WaterTap Technology Acceleration Project, and the Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN).

“We’re pleased to again welcome ISA, a technical association that works to advance the use of automation and technology in the water and wastewater treatment industry, as a supporting organization of the LIFT Intelligent Water Systems Challenge,” states Lisa McFadden, Director of Integrated Technical Programs and the Associate Director of the Water Science & Engineering Center at WEF. “Last year’s Challenge prompted a lot of interest and ideas around intelligent water systems and we’re expecting great things this year as well.”

The Challenge kicked off earlier this month and will run through September 23, 2019. Teams will have until April 22, 2019 to submit a Challenge Plan and until August 2, 2019 to submit a Challenge Solution. Judges will award a top prize of $10,000. Recognition will also be given to innovative approaches and to outstanding contributions from students or young professionals. Get more details by visiting the Challenge website (http://www.werf.org/lift/docs/IWS_Challenge/LIFT_IWS_Challenge_2019.aspx).

“ISA’s Water and Wastewater Industries Division is pleased to be a supporter of the 2019 LIFT Intelligent Water Systems Challenge, as it is a flagship program that brings out the best of what people and automation technology can do in the municipal water/water sector,” emphasizes Graham Nasby, a long-time leader within ISA’s WWID and a widely recognized expert within the water/wastewater community. “ISA is committed to helping professionals in the water and wastewater industries improve safety, efficiency, and operational performance through automated controls, instrumentation, and other advanced technologies.”

Nasby says that for well over a decade ISA’s WWID has collaborated with WEF and other professional associations to conduct an annual symposium to showcase the value of automatic control applications, sensors and instrumentation, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), and engineering best practices to the treatment and distribution of water, and the collection and treatment of wastewater.

In 2019, ISA as part of its goals to serve the needs of municipal water/wastewater community, will be rolling out an all-new event, the ISA Energy and Water Automation Conference, which will be held August 7-8, 2019 at the Omni Championsgate Resort in Orlando, Florida. The conference will combine ISA’s popular power and municipal water programs into a single, two-day gathering with additional content on industrial water applications. Topics of emphasis include data analytics, IIOT, Smart Cities Initiative, and cybersecurity.

“ISA has a strong history of supporting the needs of automation professionals in a wide variety of industries, including the municipal water/wastewater sector,” Nasby says. “With its new ISA Energy and Water Automation Conference in 2019, ISA hopes to further advance its goals of creating a better world through automation, by encouraging the sharing of information and ideas between the electric power and water/wastewater sectors. I encourage you to find out more about this event as details are released in the coming months.”

For more information, visit the conference website at https://www.isa.org/events-and-conferences/from-the-world/2019-08-07-isa-energy-and-water-automation-conference. More details as well as online registration will be available soon.

The post ISA announced as a supporting organization of the 2019 LIFT Intelligent Water Systems Challenge appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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The title of the MIT Concrete Sustainability Hub’s (CS Hub’s) next webinar poses both a challenge and a question. “Fix My Road: What can YOU do (with your smartphone) to make OUR Infrastructure Great Again while addressing Climate Change?” will propose a new, crowdsourced way to assess the state of infrastructure.

Using acceleration data from a smartphone mounted inside of a vehicle, MIT researchers say they have developed a method to assess road roughness properties. This method can also be used to map the aggregated excess fuel consumption, associated environmental footprint, and “health” impact due to these road conditions, they say.

The one-hour webinar is offered at no cost and is scheduled for 11 a.m. (EST) on February 28. Registration is required for all participants. The webinar will be presented by Dr. Franz-Josef Ulm, MIT Professor, and Faculty Director of the Concrete Sustainability Hub.  The webinar was developed collaboratively by the researchers at the CS Hub and several other universities.

Register for the webinar at http://tinyurl.com/y47thnsl.

The post MIT Webinar Previews Road Roughness Method appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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Richmond, Va. — Virginia Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine, Audi of America, and Traffic Technology Services (TTS) announced that more than 1,450 traffic signals in the Northern Virginia area now share real-time data with Audi’s Traffic Light Information (TLI) technologies, including Green Light Optimized Speed Advisory (GLOSA) and “time-to-green.”

Through data sharing, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) provides real-time traffic signal information to Audi vehicles that are equipped with TLI. With time-to-green, the information sharing between VDOT and Audi can lead to improved operations and enhanced safety on arterial roadways. TLI lets drivers stopped at a red light know when that light will change to green and GLOSA provides speed recommendations to drivers to minimize stops at red lights.

In 2016, Audi worked with TTS to launch Traffic Light Information, an Audi feature that allows the car to communicate with the infrastructure in certain cities and metropolitan areas across the U.S. VDOT’s support of the TTS vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) service through its SmarterRoads portal makes the agency the largest single data provider in North America for this system. TTS continues to work with VDOT to expand the capability into other regions throughout the Commonwealth.

“VDOT’s collaboration with Audi, TTS, and other innovative companies leverages the Commonwealth’s data and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications, preparing us for more connected and automated vehicles on our roadways,” said Virginia Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine. “We are committed to improving safety, reducing congestion, and exploring opportunities to partner with the private sector.”

“We’re excited to work with the Virginia Department of Transportation to continue to bring industry-leading connectivity and mobility solutions to Audi drivers in the community near our Northern Virginia headquarters as well as to our customers across America,” said Mark Del Rosso, president, Audi of America. “Not only do vehicle-to-infrastructure technologies like GLOSA benefit drivers today, they’re also the critical steps needed as we continue toward an automated future.”

“The industry needs more agencies to lead the way like the Commonwealth has with their SmarterRoads portal.  It takes visionaries on both sides of a connected vehicle technology to make a system like this possible,” said Thomas Bauer, TTS chief executive officer. “VDOT and Audi are true pioneers that are advancing the state of the industry, and we are proud to work with both.”

Time-to-Green

Traffic Light Information, an Audi connect PRIME feature available on select 2017, 2018, and newer models, enables the car to communicate with the infrastructure in certain cities and metropolitan areas across the U.S.

When one of these select Audi models approaches a connected traffic light, it receives real-time signal information from the traffic management system that monitors traffic lights via the on-board 4G LTE data connection. When the light is red, the TLI feature will display the time remaining until the signal changes to green in the instrument cluster in front of the driver or in the head-up display (if equipped). This “time-to-green” information helps reduce stress by letting the driver know approximately how much time remains before the light changes.

Future iterations of V2I technology could include integration with the vehicle’s start/stop function, optimized navigation routing, and other predictive services. All of these services are designed to help reduce congestion and enhance mobility on crowded roadways.

GLOSA

Audi is the first manufacturer to launch Green Light Optimized Speed Advisory (GLOSA) in the U.S. GLOSA uses traffic signal information and the current position of a vehicle to display a speed recommendation that allows drivers to pass traffic lights during a green interval, in order to reduce the number of stops at red lights. The distance to stop, the speed limit profile for the area, and the signal timing plans are all used to calculate the speed recommendation displayed to the driver.

For more information, visit www.media.audiusa.com.

The post VDOT, Audi, and TTS Bring Traffic Light Information Technology to Virginia appeared first on Civil + Structural Engineer magazine.

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Boise, Idaho — The Bureau of Reclamation issued the final Environmental Assessment (EA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the Cottonwood Creek Daylighting Project in Boise, Idaho. The EA follows the WaterSMART grant awarded in 2017 to the Boise River Enhancement Network, who proposed to restore the natural function of the last 440 feet of Cottonwood Creek. Cottonwood Creek drains an 8,000-acre watershed in the Boise front, which enters the Boise River at Julia Davis Park.

New, instream habitat created by the proposed project would support additional spawning, rearing, and overwintering fish habitat, all of which are currently limited in the Boise River fishery. Completion of this project will create 0.35 acres of riparian and wetland habitat, providing new habitat for native wildlife and improving water quality through the capture, filter, and removal of pollutants.

The EA analyzed two actions: No Action Alternative and the Proposed Action, implementing the project as described above. A No Action Alternative was evaluated to provide an appropriate basis by which the other alternative can be compared. Based on the analysis, the Proposed Action was selected.

The final EA and FONSI were prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and are available online at https://www.usbr.gov/pn/programs/ea/idaho/bren/index.html. For more information or to request a copy of the final EA and FONSI, contact Rochelle Ochoa, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Reclamation, Snake River Area Office, 230 Collins Road, Boise, ID 83702 or by email at rochoa@usbr.gov.

For information about the WaterSMART program, go to https://www.usbr.gov/watersmart/cwmp/.

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