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All other web news articles are listed below in order of when they were posted.
In observance of Christmas and New Year’s <em>Civil Engineering</em> online will be on hiatus from December 23 through January 3. Look for a new update on January 7, 2014.
Research Examines Joplin Tornado
An investigation by NIST found that many factors contributed to the single deadliest tornado in official U.S. records and presents recommendations to bolster resiliency.
Bay Bridge Demolition Begins
A demolition team is using building information modeling and a rich historical record to dismantle the east span in the reverse order from which it was built.
<span style="FONT-STYLE: normal">Civil Engineering</span> online takes a break this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Our next update will be Tuesday, December 10.
O’Hare Completes Widest, Higher-Strength Runway
With the completion of the first of a series of east-west runways, the O’Hare Modernization Program has reached a milestone in its effort to streamline air traffic, increase capacity, and accommodate larger aircraft.
More Slow Growth Anticipated for 2014
New economic forecasts for the construction industry call for residential construction to lead the way in a continued sluggish recovery hampered by uncertainty.
Tacoma Art Museum Expands With New Entry, Gallery
In designing a new entryway and gallery wing for the Tacoma Art Museum, architects drew inspiration from the existing building as well as local history. As a result, the new elements are integrated, yet distinct.
Greenhouse Gas Levels Reach World Record
The World Meteorological Organization releases data revealing that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reached record levels in 2012, and 2013 is likely to rank among hottest years on record.
Transit Plan Reconnects Parts of Connecticut City
The development of retail, office, residential, and parking structures around a busy transportation center in Stamford, Connecticut, will reconnect portions of the city that have been cut off from one another for decades by transportation infrastructure.
Red Star Line Museum Opens in Antwerp
A new museum in Antwerp, Belgium, interweaves a modern immigration museum among three historic buildings that hosted immigrants bound for North America almost a century ago.
Plan Melbourne Lays Out Development Options
In the Australian state of Victoria, the premier and the minister for planning have announced an urban renewal and development plan that plots the state’s next 40 years of urban growth.
Breaking Down Walls By Building New Ones
An impressive new structure on the campus of the Cedars-Sinai Health System blends research, clinical, and procedural functions to create seamless functioning within the healthcare complex.
Chicago to Add Nutrient Recovery to Largest Plant
One of the largest water recovery plants in the world, located near Chicago, is planning to add a process that will remove phosphorus and nitrogen from its side streams in a form that will be marketable as fertilizer.
GSA Issues Recommendations On Green Ratings Systems
The U.S. General Services Administration has singled out two green building rating systems as being the most useful in evaluating the performance of government buildings, though some federal requirements are higher.
FHWA Launches Broad Innovation Website
The Federal Highway Administration has launched a consolidated website as a one-stop location for information on innovative highway design and construction.
Army Corps Trains Middle School Students in STEM
A new program will feature U.S. Army Corps of Engineers volunteers going into middle schools for family members of the Department of Defense to present a concentrated STEM curriculum that will culminate in a building project competition.
Bus Rapid Transit Can Boost Local Growth
Bus rapid transit lines can be economical to build and stimulate just as much local development—and economic growth—as other forms of mass transit, according to a new study.
Sanitation, Waste Institute Opens in Ghana
The Institute of Sanitation and Waste Management will officially open in Ghana next week to train a new generation of sanitation and waste engineers in Africa and support one of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.
Robotic Blocks Offer More Than Meets the Eye
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have created magnetic, robotic blocks that can spin, jump, and lock together to form larger shapes—with no external moving parts.
IDEAStudio Works on STEAM
The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth opens a new studio to facilitate collaboration between engineers and artists.
Crystal Palace Plans Announced
Local government leaders in London have welcomed the announcement of a £500-million investment that includes rebuilding the famed Crystal Palace, in the park of the same name.
Sewage Plant Undergoes Dramatic Transformation
New owners have completely overhauled the treatment processes of a once-dysfunctional wastewater facility in New Jersey—in half the time that was expected. The sparkling new facility now meets all applicable standards.
Waterfront Park Replaces Rail Yard in Milwaukee
A new park featuring trails and a trio of pedestrian bridges is providing improved access to economic and recreational opportunities in Milwaukee, while at the same time collecting and storing storm-water runoff.
Young Workers Shift Approach to Career Prep
A new Georgetown University report has identified a structural shift in how young adults are preparing for the workforce and the age at which they reach economic self-sufficiency.
New Study: Wind Cheaper Than Coal
According to a new study published online last month by the Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, building new “clean” energy systems to generate electricity is cheaper than traditional coal-based energy systems.
Experts Seek to Decrease Concrete’s Carbon Footprint
The next frontier in sustainable construction may be a process known as carbon accounting of concrete—the method of developing standards for measuring the carbon footprint of concrete and developing strategies to reduce that footprint.
Freight Rail Bypass Project Opens in Chicago
Part of an extensive program to improve rail service in the Midwest, an $81-million rail project that added a third line to one of the worst bottlenecks in Chicago’s congested rail system opened last week.
Annual Skyscraper Awards Announced
The two towers forming part of the complex Absolute World, in Mississauga, Ontario, have been named the winners of the Emporis Skyscraper Award.
San Francisco Plans Billion-Dollar Biosolids Upgrade
Design work has begun on a $1.6-billion upgrade to the aging solids-handling processes at the Southeast Treatment Plant, the largest wastewater treatment plant owned and operated by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.
L.A. to Treat Contaminated Groundwater for City Use
Faced with dwindling water resources, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will construct an extensive system of wells and treatment facilities to pump and treat water from a superfund site in the San Fernando Valley.
U.S. DOT Announces 2013 TIGER Grants
The U.S. Department of Transportation has announced the names of the 52 recipients in 37 states that have received a share of $474 million in Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) money in 2013.
Dubai Tower Will Shade Itself
A new tower planned for the Dubai skyline will offer a strategic cutout, as well as stone louvers, so that it can provide shade to the interior while offering unparalleled views of the city.
Shanghai Launches Medical Support Center
In developing a master plan for a new medical campus in Shanghai, China, designers conceived a shared facility that will bring the surrounding hospitals’ service functions under one roof.
San Diego Airport Expands with Style
A significant expansion of the busy airport includes state-of-the-art curbside baggage handling, iconic sail-like canopies, and an easily identifiable surf-and-sea motif.
Zurich’s “Europaallee” Expands
Amsterdam-based Wiel Arets Architects has won a design competition to develop “Site D,” a location in the master-planned urban sector surrounding Zurich’s main rail station.
Underground Gym Creates Courtyard ‘Hill’
A high school in Hellerup, Denmark, has recently completed the installation of a sunken gym topped with a curved timber roof designed to give students a wooden hilltop to enjoy.
Climate Change Poses Risks To Energy Systems
A recent U.S. Department of Energy report warns that rising temperatures resulting from global climate changes could damage the nation’s energy infrastructure—and calls on the public and private sectors to address the issue.
Crucial Aquifer Is Rapidly Depleting
New research indicates the Ogallala Aquifer will be depleted by nearly 70 percent by 2060, presaging consequences for the rich agricultural area that draws upon it for irrigation.
Stream ‘Daylighting’ Offers Benefits, Challenges
A new report reveals that the process of daylighting buried rivers and streams as part of urban renewal efforts has gained momentum, and a database of best practices would further encourage the practice.
Southeast Asia Most at Risk From Climate Change
A new research report reveals that Southeast Asia, southern Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa are most at risk from the rising temperatures and extreme weather conditions associated with climate change.
New York City Gem Sparkles Anew
The Corbin Building, once the tallest in the city at nine stories, undergoes a $67.4-million renovation to incorporate it into the Fulton Center mass transit project.
Monitoring of Colosseum in Rome Extended
A road that curves around a portion of Rome’s Colosseum was closed to private traffic earlier this month, providing an opportunity to extend an important monitoring project.
Sleek Bascule Bridge Unveiled in New Zealand
The new crossing of the lower reach of New Zealand’s Hatea River that opened late last month pays homage to Maori cultural traditions while offering a sleek, earthquake-resistant design.
Report Assesses Global Assets
A new report compares the largest nations by their built asset wealth, drawing an interesting picture of the changing global economy.
Miami Beach Convention Center Design Selected
Elements of the winning design include a new hotel placed atop the adapted existing structure, realigned traffic patterns, and a hilly, landscaped park concealing the loading docks and parking structure.
INDOT to Test Quieter Road Surface
The FHWA has awarded a $2-million innovative technology grant for a project in Indianapolis that will use a concrete finishing technique designed to improve grip while reducing noise.
St. Louis Medical Campus Stands Out
A new research facility at the Washington University School of Medicine that brings together multiple areas of study offers flexible spaces, open views, and plenty of opportunity for interaction.
Girder Bridge Replaces Aging Maine Swing Span
The Maine Department of Transportation will build a bridge across the Kennebec River offering 75 ft of clearance above the navigation channel to replace a dysfunctional movable bridge.
Calgary Tower Offers Pixilated Appearance
A 700 ft tall tower in Calgary, Alberta, that will open by 2017—or earlier—will seamlessly go from being a sleek office block to a whimsical residential tower as it rises.
Solar Photovoltaic Market Grows as Prices Fall
A new report projects strong growth for solar photovoltaic systems in Asia and emerging markets as system costs decline, making them a cost-effective solution in areas with high electricity costs.
City Services Building Designed to Survive
The new public services center in Salt Lake City is designed not only to survive a 2,500-year earthquake, but to remain in operation in the event of such a dramatic event, all while using no more net energy than it generates.
Famed Rose Bowl Stadium Expands
Renovation work at the Rose Bowl—home of the UCLA Bruins and football’s famed New Year’s Day Rose Bowl playoff game—is nearing an end.
Concrete Protects Marseille Museum
On the occasion of its designation as the 2013 European Capital of Culture, the City of Marseille, France, has unveiled a spectacular new museum on the Mediterranean Sea that is protected from exposure to saltwater by ultra-high-performance concrete.
Ecodistricts Shaping Sustainable Cities
A new urban planning movement, centered on rezoning and infrastructure that supports environmental sustainability is gaining converts across the United States. One of the most recent of these "ecodistricts," as they are called, is being developed in San Francisco, where public-private activism is the key to achieving a successful result.
Statue of Liberty Reopens
The Statue of Liberty National Monument, and the 12-acre island that houses it, have reopened to the public once again.
Glass-Clad Pavilion Showcases Whale Skeleton
The Museum of Natural History of Los Angeles County has added a 65 ft tall glass-enclosed pavilion to showcase one of its most awe-inspiring finds: a 63 ft long fin whale skeleton.
Washington State Seeks End To Mudflows on Rail Lines
Each time a mudflow covers the train tracks in western Washington, commuter trains are sidelined for 48 hours. After a record-breaking rainy winter, state and local governments, as well as rail operators, have identified six areas in need of improvement.
Solution Found for U.K. Spoil Heap Slip
Four months ago, a landslide at the Hatfield Colliery, located near Doncaster, United Kingdom, wreaked havoc with a 250 m stretch of rail line. A solution has now been selected.
Path for Bay Area Tower
An office tower that is being constructed in coordination with the city’s new transit center will become the tallest building in San Francisco.
In Utah, Historic Facade Saved with Stilts
The brick façade of the Provo Tabernacle, originally constructed between 1883 and 1898, is currently sitting on stilts as the new Provo City Center Temple is built beneath and within it.
USGBC Beta Tests LEED Version 4
Ahead of the new LEED standards coming later this year, the USGBC is obtaining feedback from nearly 100 volunteer projects on the implementation process.
Reading, U.K., Station Redesigned, Expanded
Engineers and builders are separating freight from passenger rail and significantly expanding the capacity of the Reading station, west of London—all on a very tight schedule.
Norway Prepares for First Ship Tunnel
Norwegian officials are asking their engineers to combine their seafaring and tunnel-building skills to construct what may be the world’s first tunnel designed expressly for ships.
Chicago Navy Pier Design Progresses
The Navy Pier in Chicago, one of the most popular attractions in the Midwest, will soon get a makeover with both modern and historical elements.
Brazil Plans High-Tech Antarctic Research Station
Less than 18 months after a fire ravaged Brazil’s 30-year-old Antarctic research station, the Brazilian navy is moving forward with plans to construct a high-tech station at the same site that will blend sustainable design with sustainable living.
Weaving Together a River And a City
A new landscape master plan for Nanjing, China, will connect historical sites, ecological features, and the city ahead of the 2014 Youth Olympic Games.
Construction Spending Outlook Strongest in Years
With key indicators pointing up, economic experts in the construction industry predict steady growth if energy and commodity prices remain stable and political fallout from debt ceiling debates is minimized.
The Gift that Keeps Giving
The phased restoration of New York City’s historical Public Theater marks a milestone with completion of facade and lobby improvements.
New Office Banks on It
Gensler’s Newport Beach Office, a dramatic repurposing of a former bank, features an innovative floor plan that encourages collaboration.
Biome Canopy Walk Nears Completion
The Eden Project has commissioned a walkway at the canopy level of its Tropical Biome with a platform that will be modeled on the elaborate nests of weaverbirds.
Phoenix Opens Elevated Light-Rail to Airport
The first segment of the eagerly anticipated PHX Sky Train, which gives Phoenix the distinction of having a mass transit system that extends above an airport taxiway, has opened for service.
Sediment Diversion to Rebuild Wetlands
Contracts were awarded recently on two projects to divert flow and sediment from the Mississippi River to offset the dramatic loss of coastal wetlands in Louisiana.
College, Industry Partner For Sustainable Future
Hartnell College, a community college just south of San José, California, is expanding the educational opportunities for its engineering and construction students by developing renewable energy sources on campus.
Baltimore Implements Climate Action Plan
The City of Baltimore has begun to implement its Climate Action Plan, which includes reducing energy consumption, increasing transit-oriented development, and a host of other measures.
Lightweight Building Unfolds On-site
A new composite building that unfolds—expanding by a factor of as much as 6.8—traces its origins to a civil engineer’s experiences as a child in Peru.
Dutch Engineers Unveil Bladeless Windmill
The bladeless windmill’s developers believe their creation may offer a more palatable alternative to conventional wind turbine farms, which the Dutch public has rejected because of their operating noise, blade shadows, and aesthetics.
Chicago Unravels Vexing Traffic Knot
A nightmarish intersection of several significant highways just west of Chicago’s Loop will be reconstructed for the first time in nearly 60 years, and the improvements will benefit both commuter and freight traffic.
German Structure Goes Green, Literally
An innovative new apartment complex in Hamburg, Germany, employs bioreactor panels containing microscopic algae to shade the building and generate energy.
Dutch Museum Reopens After Celebrated Makeover
After a challenging renovation that included underground construction conducted well below the water table, an expanded and updated version of the Netherlands’ cherished national museum has reopened.
U.K. Rail Station Project Reaches Milestone
The Birmingham New Street redevelopment project, which began in 2010, has reached its halfway mark. Next week will mark the grand opening of the first half of the new concourse.
Passenger Rail is Quietly Growing
A new report by the Brookings Institution notes that passenger rail is on the verge of a renaissance after Amtrak capped 10 years of steady growth in 2012 by setting a passenger record of 31.2 million.
Severe Storm Surges Projected to Increase
Researchers have developed a new model for predicting the effects of climate change on hurricane storm surges and they are expecting outsized surges to become more common.
London Redevelops South Bank Waterfront
Architects and engineers are planning a complex refurbishment to a decades-old, multibuilding arts center that will improve access and create a permanent festival atmosphere along the banks of the Thames River.
Kazakhstan Commissions High-Speed Rail
When complete in 2017, Kazakhstan’s two largest cities will be connected via a 1,000 km line that traverses harsh terrain and crosses one of the largest lakes in the world.
SF Subway Project Shifts into High Gear
It’s been more than 10 years since the Federal Transit Administration approved the preliminary engineering for San Francisco’s Central Subway project. Tunnel preconstruction started last March, and a nearly billion-dollar grant last fall paved the way for construction to ramp up this spring.
Debris Diversion Program Gains Traction near Chicago
Cook County’s ordinance requiring that 5 percent of debris from construction and demolition projects be reused and 70 percent be recycled may be one of the country’s most progressive—and after five months it has plenty of support.
Oregon Urged to Plan for Earthquake, Tsunami
A new report to the Oregon State Legislature details the risks from a powerful earthquake on the Cascadia Subduction Zone, and outlines a 50-year plan to build infrastructure resilience.
WHO Report Calls for Safer Road Infrastructure
A new World Health Organization report says that infrastructure improvements must be made to protect all road travelers, particularly pedestrians and bicyclists who account for 27 percent of road traffic fatalities worldwide.
NSF Issues Updated Minorities Report
A new report by the National Science Foundation includes a wealth of data detailing the participation of women, minorities, and persons with disabilities in science and engineering.
Tappan Zee Replacement Finally Ready to be Built
After more than a decade of delays, the New York State Thruway Authority and the State of New York are preparing to kick off construction of the replacement for the Tappan Zee Bridge across the Hudson River in upstate New York.
Domino Sugar Plan Redefines A Waterfront
A revised plan to redevelop a former manufacturing plant and construct several other inviting structures along the East River in Brooklyn will help bring vibrancy and commerce back to a flagging waterfront.
Diagonal Tower Turns a Corner
A dazzling tower slated for a new business district in Seoul, South Korea, employs diagonal columns for strength and efficiency.
East 180th Street Station Renovation Complete
New York City Transit has restored a historically important administration building and the adjoining East 180th Street Station in a way that preserves the character of the two structures.
Cancer Center Puts Patients First
A new center for cancer research and treatment in Rio de Janeiro focuses on making the patient experience easier and more uplifting.
Smithsonian Planning Major Upgrades to Renwick Gallery
The Renwick Gallery, which is part of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and attracts approximately 175,000 visitors each year, will be closed for two years for its first comprehensive renovation in more than 40 years.
District of Columbia Plans Ambitious ‘Green’ Path
The District of Columbia plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, implement sustainable storm-water capture and treatment systems, and ensure that its buildings meet stringent environmental standards in the years to come.
Another CREATE Crossing Begins
The Illinois Department of Transportation moves forward with a project to improve the flow of train and vehicle traffic in Chicago, the busiest rail hub in the United States.
Separated Lanes Help Cyclists Navigate Cities
Groundbreaking research is under way on a new generation of protected bicycle lanes that its advocates as well as transportation engineers believe will improve roadway design to accommodate a burgeoning number of cyclists in urban settings.
Art and Film Museum Given Modern Makeover
The University of California Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive is being seismically upgraded and architecturally improved with a modern addition that makes the community the star.
Columbia University Plans West Harlem Development
A 17-acre mixed-use academic development under way in New York City by Columbia University will include parklike areas and retail and dining options that will be available to students and the public alike.
Florida’s Outdated I-395 to Get Safety, Visual Upgrade
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has big plans to rebuild an outdated section of I-395 to bring the expressway up to current safety standards and improve its aesthetics, including the addition of an impressive new signature span.
Update of LEED Program Scrutinized by All Sides
The update of the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program, originally scheduled to be released last year, is still being debated by everyone concerned.
Tacoma Bridge Is Reborn
Tacoma marks the 100th anniversary of the Murray Morgan Bridge by unveiling a rehabilitation that gives the span a new lease on life.
Aesthetic New Bridge to Replace an Icon
Work begins on a vertical lift span bridge that will serve as the replacement for an Art Deco bascule bridge that once connected the Massachusetts cities of Quincy and Weymouth.
Redesigned D.C. Pavilion Breaks Ground in March
The Gateway Pavilion was touted as the launching pad for the reimagining of the east campus of St. Elizabeths hospital late last year. Now that changes suggested by various review boards have been made, it may fulfill its mission.
Surprises Abound in Hong Kong Cultural Center
The winning design for the new $350-million Xiqu Center in Hong Kong, the first of 17 new cultural venues planned for the developing West Kowloon Cultural District, features an elevated globe.
Careful Redesign Transforms Midwest Library
Architects, engineers, and constructors doubled the available space in the Beaux-Arts Central Library in St. Louis by dismantling portions of a storage area and reconstituting it as a more robust but light-filled space.
NBCUniversal Plans Massive Transit Investment
NBCUniversal’s Universal City, in Los Angeles, is evolving, and through its ongoing development of the site is planning a $100-million investment in the local transportation infrastructure.
New Master Plan Opens Additional Bay Views
The winning design for the Fort Mason, San Francisco, master plan competition centers on protecting the legacy of the site while planning for a future that extends more than 100 years.
Kennedy Center Plans Expansion
The famed arts center will add rehearsal and education space while seeking to better connect the site to the Potomac River and the nation’s capital.
High-Rise of the Future Thinks for Itself
A conceptual framework for the way buildings might be designed and constructed by the year 2050 includes everything from algae-covered facades to self-healing building materials, and from heat-sensing walls and windows to flying maintenance robots.
WWII Museum Pavilion Salutes Nation’s Strength
The National WWII Museum’s newest exhibit space combines innovative architecture and engineering to create a dramatic setting for artifacts from land, sea, and air battles that narrate the uniquely American story of the war.
Windmills Planned for U.K. Among World’s Tallest
Resembling massive propellers unmoored from a gigantic aircraft, some of the world’s tallest wind turbines may soon be spinning above the boggy midlands of Ireland, generating electricity to be delivered via undersea cables to the United Kingdom.
New Bridge Crosses Canada’s Longest River
Decades in the making, the Deh Cho Bridge is the first bridge to be constructed across the Mackenzie River, connecting the Northwest Territories, Canada, to the rest of the continent for the first time.
Streetcars Make a Comeback
Cities across the country are investing in streetcar systems as a relatively inexpensive way to relieve congestion and spur economic development along specific urban and suburban corridors.
After Sandy, New York State Examines Resilience
After Hurricane Sandy roared through the eastern seaboard, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo established a commission to examine the condition of the state’s infrastructure and its preparedness for the next extreme event. The report recommends a number of changes in approach.
PHX Finalizing Sky Train
A new automated people mover will carry about 2.5 million riders per year to the nation’s ninth-busiest airport, easing curb congestion.
Chicago Hospital Raises the Bar
The Center for Care and Discovery on the campus of the University of Chicago features a patient-centered design that lifts the equipment—and the lobby—off of the ground floor, challenging the engineers to control vibrations.
Iconic Motel Lobby Repurposed for Museum
The iconic, triple-arched lobby of the La Concha Motel in Las Vegas was disassembled, moved, and rebuilt to serve as the entrance to an outdoor museum of the city’s famous neon signs.
Toronto Waterfront Transformation Advances
An expansive project seeks to revamp Toronto’s waterfront into a tree-lined, pedestrian-friendly space that beckons both tourists and residents to enjoy the shores of Lake Ontario.
A River Runs through It
The Kallang River is freed from a concrete canal in a project designed to better integrate the body of water into Singapore’s Bishan Park.
Twists and Turns Challenge Museum’s Designers
Shaped like boxes twisted and stacked one upon the other, and infused with glass panels and cantilevered spaces, a new art museum in Richmond presented significant structural challenges.
New Mexico Adapts BIM Technology for Roads
The New Mexico Department of Transportation is currently configuring software so that it can use building information modeling (BIM) in transportation engineering projects.
Engineering Critical to Avoiding Global Risks
The new edition of the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report has identified the top 50 global risks of the next decade, and many of them can be alleviated—or exacerbated—by civil engineers.
Depot’s Historic Renovation Took a Fast Track
Restoring the Union Depot in St. Paul, Minneapolis—shuttered and neglected since the 1970s—so that it could become a modern multimodal transit center took painstaking effort by architects, engineers, and builders.
Canadian Cities Embrace Skyscrapers
Developers are working on bigger and taller building projects that will bring residents back to the urban core of Toronto and other major cities.
Hospital Designs Reflect Focus on Patients, Brands
New hospitals in the UAE and the Republic of Korea take health care facility design to the next level with edgy architecture that makes a statement, maximizes functional efficiency and creates a healing environment for patients.
War Education Center Planned for the Mall
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., has broken ground on a mostly subterranean education center that will explain and honor the sacrifices of all U.S. soldiers.
Earthquakes Will Affect West Coast Sea Levels
A National Research Council report published last week reveals that regional and local factors—including earthquakes—will affect sea level rises along the West Coast for many decades to come.