Backing the Electric Infrastructure

The electric grid and infrastructure necessary to create, carry, and distribute the electric power countries depend upon has been stressed more than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic as people stayed home and used more electricity. Winter ice storms and other natural events have played havoc on aging infrastructure, as well. The Congress is working on an Administration sponsored bill to invest billions of dollars in infrastructure upgrades, replacement, and new construction. Some companies are ready to hit the electric highway and rebuild America.

As an example, SQUAN, a design/build services company for telecommunications network infrastructure with offerings in fiber, engineering,

Taking LEED on the Road

Hotels are seeing more traffic as travel restrictions are being eased in a reaction to the COVID-19 vaccination efforts. The American Hotel and Lodging Assn. estimated that COVID-19’s impact on the travel industry in 2020 was about nine times of that from 9/11. In anticipation of a better year, hotel construction is resuming in many areas.

The U.S. led the world in new hotel and room openings during the first quarter of 2021, according to data from STR, a hospitality research firm. Its AM:PM platform showed the country’s construction activity continues to decline in comparison with pre-pandemic levels, however, as over the three-month period,

[VIDEO] Baubot, the Robot That Wants to Be Trade on the Jobsite

Baubot, via YouTube // Baubot

While still new in the construction industries, robots are typically designed to perform a specific task in a highly precise and efficient way, like the rebar tying robot, Tybot or the brick-laying robot Hadrian X. More recently, though, robots are being imagined as platforms for 3rd party companies to develop hardware and accessories to attach to the base robot, like the Boston Dynamics robotic dog, Spot. I recently came across a new robot, called Baubot, which hopes to one day perform tasks using every tool on a typical jobsite.

Baubot, an Austrian-based

East-West Battle of the Heavy Lifters

A staple of construction for centuries has been lifting machinery, from A-frames to cranes, human to mechanical operation. As requirements for height and lift weight have gone up, companies across the world have responded with new and more powerful equipment. Now, the claim to being the biggest, most powerful crane is being fought from opposite sides of the globe.

In China, XCMG introduced its XGC88000 crawler crane in 2013, setting the hoisting record of 2,155 tons by hoisting and installing a Fischer–Tropsch process type reactor. With a rated capacity of 4,000 tons, it has set a new hoisting record on April

Want to Walk Off a Construction Job? Do These Things First

One of the toughest things to deal with on any project can be the relationships between owner and general contractor or the general contractor and subcontractor. In the worst case scenarios, tensions between those relationships can sometimes lead to one of those parties packing up their tools and walking off the job before it’s complete. But that action may make the situation a little hairier than you might expect, if you don’t do it the right way.

In a recent post from The Lien Zone, a great source for construction law related advice, Patrick Barthet offers some steps to

Taking AIM at Zero Carbon

Governments around the world are taking a closer look at what contributes to CO2 emissions and its impact on climate change. In the U.S., several agencies are involved in internal research and funding of outside projects on the topic. One is the Federal Transit Admin., and its AIM (Accelerating Innovative Mobility) initiative to support transit mobility and innovation. Congress also enacted significant tax breaks in various laws, so the IRS is also involved, tangentially, in CO2 emissions regulation.

An example of funding available from the FTA AIM initiative is a $1.5 million grant to Houston METRO to pilot one of

Personal Data, Jobsite Safety

Many pieces of equipment have been developed to prevent or mitigate the severity of injury caused by incidents on the jobsite. Helmets, harnesses, steel reinforced boots, mesh gloves all help.

But incidents still happen.

According to OSHA, 5,333 workers died on the job in 2019 — on average, more than 100 a week or about 15 deaths every day. About 20% (1,061) of worker fatalities in private industry in calendar year 2019 were in construction – accounting for one in five worker deaths for the year.

The top 10 most frequently cited OSHA standards that were broken in fiscal year

[VIDEO] How Balfour Beatty is Handling COVID-19 Safety on the Jobsite

via Balfour Beatty // YouTube

Even though we’re over a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, the virus is still threatening the health of construction’s workers and taking a toll on project timelines.  It’s likely that your company has already determined the best course of action to help mitigate the risk of spreading the virus on your jobsites, but it’s never too late to learn from another contractor.

Balfour Beatty, one of the world’s largest construction companies, has recently uploaded their COVID-19 Safety Orientation Video on YouTube in both English and Spanish. The 7 minute video explains the

Report: 7.3% of America’s Bridges are “Structurally Deficient” in 2021, Down Slightly YOY

via ARTBA

Each year, the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) puts out their annual Bridge Report, which highlights the general state of America’s bridges. Their recently released 2021 report shows a slight decrease in the amount of structurally deficient bridges versus their report in 2020.

There are currently 618,000 bridges in the US, according to the ARTBA report, and roughly 45,000 of them have been rated as “structurally deficient,” which is a 1,140 bridge decrease versus last year’s report. The term signifies that there are “one or more structural defects that require attention.”

At the

Georgia [Infrastructure] on My Mind

In Georgia, historic buildings bump shoulders with modern ones in large cities and small towns. And like many locations, large cities grow larger as they attract business and companies looking for talent and economic benefits. But small towns tend to grow or disappear.

Canton, the county seat of Georgia’s Cherokee County, is located about 40 miles from Atlanta and dates from 1834. In 1864, when the Union army under General Sherman burned the town of 200 citizens to the ground, it effectively disappeared. However, unlike other destroyed towns, Canton rebuilt and eventually prospered. As of 2020, the city had an